Uncle Sal brushed a bread crumb from his vermilion bowler hat and looked across the table at his sister. "Whatsa matter, Evelyn? You barely touched your pickled pigs feet."
Mary Evelyn sighed audibly and said, "It's one of the girls at the convent. You remember the one I told you about, with the noises coming from the room?"
"Course I remember."
"Well, thankfully, those noises have stopped." She kissed her crucifix and continued. "But now, she just seems so unhappy."
"Course she's unhappy. I mean, she had to stop..."
"Sal! It's more than that. She doesn't seem interested in anything now. She doesn't want to come to any meals. She doesn't want to pray. And Sal, you should see the look in her eyes. I don't think I've ever seen anyone so sad. I just get this feeling that she wants to leave the convent and go back to life outside. I guess if that is God's plan for her...that's fine. It's just, she's really a good and decent member of our group. It would be a shame to lose her."
Uncle Sal had tuned out when she started talking about the convent, but realized he needed to say something to fill the silence. He opened his mouth and Mary Evelyn continued, "She doesn't even want to play our weekly canasta game. She's the one that said she wanted to learn. And she's great. I love having her as my partner. We've tried to find someone to take her place, but no one has jumped in yet. Sal, what do you think we should do?"
Uncle Sal took a bite of bread and chewed deliberately as he tried to think of what to say. After swallowing the bread, he said, "It sounds to me like you don't have much choice. You'll have to forsake play while the nun pines."
This episode featured:
Dewey Swenson as Uncle Sal
Olga Ho as Sister Mary Evelyn
Jellybean Merengue as the pickled pigs feet
Tune in next week when Uncle Sal says, "Don't call me Shirley."
[25 March 2008]