G upgraded us to first class on the train. Room out the wazoo! Mom’s and my room (and our view) on the 40th floor (!!) at the Marquis in Times Square, the 8th floor lobby (!!), view to the top, delicious vegan dinner and dessert at Candle 79 at a cozy second floor table, breakfasting together in one of the Marquis’ several lounges, The Booth Theatre’s production of The Elephant Man with Bradley Cooper and Patricia Clarkson across the street from the hotel (!!), elaborate holiday decorations inside and out, Radio City Music Hall where we saw their Christmas “Spectacular!” (Mom’s wish; I liked it except when they used real camels and sheep for the Nativity scenes at the end; signed a petition against it a while back to no avail), 30 Rock, the famous tree at Rockefeller Center, and ginormous ads making it eerily daylight 24/7 in Times Square and as if every ad agency on Madison Avenue upchucked on the buildings. I silently begged Santa for a remote control to hit the “OFF” button when the novelty wore off within minutes.
Still, stories’ high screens, rain, wind and cold didn’t dampen my spirit. Mom falling on her face crossing the street by our hotel? That did. Fortunately she sustained only a scraped knee and bloody nose, and a stranger and two cops offered help along with G and me. Seeing her motionless on the pavement, not knowing how injured she was and hearing her soft cries to go home? Ditto. All at once I sensed her mortality. And with a steady stream of unsubtle statements about her boozer husband during her visit, I realized she, my sister, and I married versions of our fathers. Losers. It’s such a cliche, but true. Thankfully, I’d been released. Let go. Would they?
At the airport today we hugged, said I love you’s, and I let Mom go. Let it go.