an ample woman, she shimmied her way to the pillow on the floor, smoothed the ruffles of her clothes and with the rustling settled, she looked as comfortable as always. she had a smile on her face that would have been haughty if i didn't know her well enough that mostly it was curious mischievousness.

she had never had ethiopian food before. she had never eaten with her hands. but even with (her then) 70 plus years behind her she was game to try.

that was my aunt B. fearless. audacious. and more fun than i could have ever anticipated.

she left me today. and as sad as her passing is, my memories of her are so joyous. so raucous. so full of laughter and joking and warmth.

i saw her on friday. the previous time i'd seen her she'd slept the whole time – not like her at all- and it upset me. but friday she was lucid. she was giving me a hard time, mock anger that melted to acquiecence when i prodded her on why she was mad. we laughed. we watched tv. and when i left i kissed her on her neck the way my grandmother – her sister- always did me growing up.

i told her i loved her and left smiling.

i like that vision as my goodbye…she was an amazing woman – i hope to embody the best of her as my life moves forward…

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