Last night I called my sister to find out how things were going in Puerto Rico, especially about my apartment that is up for rent. Anyway, it turns out that the realtor had not fixed the sofa that is broken in the apartment. Why would a realtor be fixing my broken sofa? That is a long story worthy of a rainy day and I will probably write about it when I get the apartment rented again. Anyway, my sister is renting it for now. I have a cup on my desk, and I happened to glance at it and it has a Bible verse, "Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving, present your requests to God." Yes I will do that not only for the apartment but also for the situation I was going to address. One of my most beloved aunts, Titi Georgina, "Georgy," as Mami calls her is very ill in the hospital.

Our relationship was always a reflection of my mother's own closeness to her. My mom was Evie's godmother even though Titi Sarita stood in her place at her baptism. The point is Mom and Titi Georgina have always been close and as a consequence I have many enduring memories of visiting Titi Georgina. Titi was married for a short time and had a daughter, Evie, who is only a couple of months older than me. Whenever we were in Puerto Rico on vacation while Daddy was in the service, we frequently visited Titi Georgina. I had my first pancake at Titi Georgina's house when she rented Titi Carmen's house. While she rented Mom's house in Puerto Nuevo, I listened to Frank Sinatra, croon, Fly me to the Moon, and other classics. Later, Abuelita (Mamita as mom would call her) went to live with Titi and of course it meant even more visits. Finally when we moved to Puerto Rico when I was thirteen, Evie and I, became quick friends and of course we were "primas hermanas." It is a closeness not reflected in the term cousin. The literal translation is cousin sister, but I like, sister cousins since we were almost sisters. As I look back, I think Titi was a little wary of this anglosized niece who came into their lives, that she never allowed Evie to spend the night at my house but I did spend many a night at Evie's sharing a twin size bed. Eating an orange while listening to my elders carry on a conversation while I stared at the brown japanese pattern painted on the wall with a roller trying to count how many lines there were or finding any twisted mistake in the pattern, later talking to Evie about books sitting on the cool terrazo floor in the then open front porch which was shaded by a tree with big roots that deformed the sidewalk, babysitting Abuelita and learning to play briscas over and over again since it was such a complicated game for me compared to fish and casino, going to the back terraza and learning about plants from Titi, under the canopy of a blossoming pink studded acacia tree. Memories, scattered and bundled together. And Titi facilitating in such a kind manner so many of the things I enjoyed. Of course, not all was pleasant, it wasn't easy for Titi to carry such a load but she did it with grace, and I will always be grateful to her. Titi was Abuelita's caretaker until she went to heaven when Annie was a baby, and now it looks like Titi is about to join her. Recently, in Puerto Rico, knowing her health was failing, I visited her twice and last night I got to talk to her by phone and told her I loved her and she understood. Now it is time to practice Philippians 4:6.


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