June 5, 2020

Exeter, Devon, England


My father’s youngest sibling, my Aunt Daphne, still lives at home with her parents. I don’t know exactly how old she is, but her age is closer to my own than to Daddy’s. I think she must have been a late-in-life surprise blessing for my grandparents. Daphne is quite comely, but she’s strange. She hardly ever speaks, but keeps entirely to herself. I used to think she didn’t like me. Now, I believe that she is just painfully shy and somewhat depressed. I wonder if maybe she once had a love affair that went terribly wrong and she has not yet recovered from the experience.

No. That is probably just romantic nonsense on my part. I know better than to make such wild, unsupported speculations.

In any event, I told Daphne last night, after everyone else had gone to bed, that I wanted more than anything for her and me to become good friends. It took a lot of nerve for me to be so bold with her, I can tell you that.

Okay,” she said without much enthusiasm.

One of my mother’s best girlfriends in Mexico City,” I confided, “is an English expat named Daphne, Daphne Trent. I have always thought Daphne was the loveliest of names.”

Aunt Daphne smiled a little at my remark. “Is that why you wanted me for a friend?”

Yes,” I said with a straight face. “I was jealous of my mother. Now, I can say that I too have a girlfriend named Daphne.”

For the first time I can remember, Aunt Daphne actually laughed aloud. Who knew that she had such a delightful sense of humor. We really are going to be good friends. I can already tell.