I just bumped into a man walking his two dogs. The nicest guy, married to the nicest woman I’ve known now for 25 years.
He’s the one you would have killed to settle down with…handsome, sweet, smart, successful, a keeper ten times over.
It was September 11th, 2001 when I saw his wife, pale as wax, running up Madison Avenue because their daughter worked next to the towers. She said Rob had run down there to get her.
In the days and weeks ahead, I didn’t see either of them when normally it would be almost daily.
I was convinced Rob and his daughter didn’t make it out. But then a worker at the Nectar Coffee Shop said, he had seen Abbey who appeared fine, but still no Rob.
Neither one of us could bring ourselves to ring their bell to ask. It was like that then…too much bad news, so if you were smart you didn’t look for it…you waited, hoping it would never find you.
Suddenly it was spring. I was in New Jersey working deciding to treat myself to a ferry ride home.
While sitting outside moved by the view aware of the crippled skyline, who’s running to catch the boat before it pulls out…
It was like a vision.
“Omigod,” I said, full of emotion, “I can’t believe it’s you.”
He gave me that million dollar smile and said, “Since 9/11 our offices have been moved here while we rebuild.”
I tearfully told him I thought he was no more.
“See, I fooled you, he said, visibly touched.”Still here wheeling and dealing.”
He gave me his handkerchief I asked to keep.
We then sat in silence as our city came closer across the Hudson abbreviated, but still ours.