The woman who once staffed our Princeton post office, the pivotal citizen in the gathering place of our country town, is gone. Anne Mason, postmistress to a generation, was days ago struck down by an ugly, fast attack of cancer. Annie was a woman of her times, a subtle force for feminism and power-point for motherhood. She more than earned her keep, guiding her children through twentieth century vicissitudes to productive adult lives, her strong husband at her side. And in the Yankee tradition of summer getaways, she took them all yearly to an island place offshore to learn more about the joys of a simple life. There’s a fading snapshot in my mind of sighting her across Cuttyhunk yards. She’s shaking out laundry and spinning around excitedly to respond to my call across lots. We were a surprise drop-in from MVY across the sound. Time for iced tea and a good catch-up.
The family dogs adored her. There is a memory chain of large handsome German Shepherds flopping and panting exuberantly about her feet on the antique floor of their home.
Our children were schoolmates, in a time gone by long ago. This summer we were in New England visiting family. Something kept nudging me to call her. Life being what it is, I never did. Now I have to live with that omission. God that makes me sad.
Annie enjoyed my writings. This one is for her, with hugs.