Published November 17, 2006

Almost Painless leaderboard

 Illustrations by Dana Peters and Kimball Paul

Like a bubble about to burst on the shiny surface of a pancake, is how she imagines it. She is eighty-two or eighty-three years old. She can never quite seem to get it right. When she wants to be certain she has to do the math, every time. She was born in 1921. That makes her – goodness, it can't be, she thinks.

The night is finally over and she should be getting out of bed. It is the day when everyone leaves. She should make them a nice breakfast to send them off. Once again, she has passed the night going in and out of a fitful sleep, rehashing her long life in her mind, stroking her losses, her regrets, like her dog, Amato. Poor Amato with his swollen belly hanging almost to the ground, the limp in his left hind leg from the time he was run over by a car, gone blind just before they had to put him to sleep.

Story Copyright © James Ogle