MRS. SCHMIDT

1/29/2021

She arrived Friday evening around 6:30PM, just after the restaurant’s customer rush. She was seated at a table for 2 in the middle of the dining area where she became highly visible to the crowd who came for their ritual Friday fish fry. Smartly dressed, but not too fashionable, she drew the attention of the diners who were well into their cod cuisine. After 5 minutes, it became obvious that this woman of 70-plus-years was going to be dining all alone. For a man to be in this situation, no one at all would have paid him any mind. People would have speculated that this man was by himself because he was personality challenged and was a stone prick to other humans, hence his singular stance. But for an elderly woman to be all alone without any middle-aged children or a female friend of her own age to sit together for a meal, this was rare. Mrs. Schmidt (her real name is unknown) merely sat down and placed her order as she patiently waited for her food. Glancing around the room, she spotted a couple nearby who were a decade beneath her. With a German accent, this woman started her tale as the polite couple listened as they were about to leave. She knew her audience were pressed for time, so she got right into it. She spoke of her dead husband who died of dementia 2 years ago, but 2 years prior to that he pushed her hard for a divorce. After 44 years of marriage, it was difficult for her to fathom why he would request this painful termination to a lifelong love. Without her saying anything further, the pieces came together. Her husband of German descent knew he was dying of a dreaded disease and didn’t want his life savings taken away from his wife. He spent hundreds of dollars to push for this divorce to protect the thousands he had saved for her. With today’s laws, dying is just a business. Her husband stripped her of her title as his wife, but in doing so, he guaranteed her future comforts in life. Love comes in many flavors including sour, subtle sadness. 

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