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Late Bloomers

“When you’re traveling to a foreign country for an extended period, it’s best to learn the language.”
              The Seasoned Traveler’s Guide to Tuscany,
Delta Jordan

Chapter 1


I feel like a hot house tomato somebody jerked out of the pot and stuffed into the ground, then forgot to water.

I thought I was doing fine, all dressed up, finally back on the piano bench at Smithville Baptist Church playing the prelude.
Then Laura McCord, the town’s failed opera singer and chief busybody, leaned over and said, “Pssst, Emily. Your shoes.”

Good lord. One blue and one black. That’s what I get for trying to be a Nancy Reagan kind of widow who glides gracefully through grief instead of what I am – a slightly hysterical, totally clueless, recently bereaved woman who doesn’t have the foggiest idea how I’ll get through the rest of my life with Mike Jones.

I don’t think I should get out of the house again for about six years.