The terrible news came via a call from my brother, Larry: Jack Bihlmier died yesterday morning. What a blow to our family, but especially to Larry. He and Jack had been best friends for, incredibly, more than eighty years. They met as toddlers on Newport Avenue in Ventnor, went to St. James and graduated together, did the same at Holy Spirit, joined the military at the same time (Larry, army, Jack, navy), and graduated from Villanova together. We knew Jack was in the hospital and very ill, but--to have him gone. Losing him is like losing a or parent or sibling--you understand that they're gone, but you can't grasp that they're gone forever. Betty called after Larry; he'll fly up from Florida for the funeral and stay with her.
As for my ordinary day: I walked Kimball, then did some chores, then went to Dudley House, which is an historic house here. I wanted to donate some needlepoint, which I gave the woman who seems to run the place. I also filled out a form to be a docent--seems like fun, as you have to dress in costume and impersonate one of the 1890's residents of the house.
Went from there to town and got my other walk in. Sidewalks and stores were jammed, of course, being it was the weekend before the fourth. I enjoy that; it seems so much more festive.
Got my new patio chairs in, thanks to my neighbor, Gil, Dad of adorable six-month-old Ethan. He, Danielle, and baby live across from me and I was grateful he offered to carry them for me. I also met the wife of my upstairs neighbor, Janna (pronounced "Yahnna"; he's from Finland). Her name sounds like "Ayn-ya" and boy, what a gorgeous couple they are. He's about 6'2", blond and handsome, and she's a tall and slender, very pretty brunette.