I did not know that her mother had beaten her exquisite skin for losing her virginity to a member of the Hindu Untouchable class. I did not know that she loved blueberries. Muffins, pies, anything.
I did not know how she would leave this planet, or in what way her atoms would be reassigned to something other than Maria Fallon.
I tell you this now: Maria Fallon dies in World War Three.
And: I forgot to meet Laurel for brunch. Two restaurants were the same distance away.
May she stop getting shortchanged.
May her atoms rearrange exactly as she would like them to.
Unable to decide, I went straight to my hotel and sought refuge in the ground floor restaurant.
When I was of the age for passionate pursuit of just about anything (girls, money, peace, love, stamps) someone told me that I had to think certain thoughts and be absolutely sure of them, so that at the very end of it all my atoms could rearrange themselves back into me.
They assured me that after this I would never have to worry about anything ever again. Everyone who succeeded would have a White Christmas forever and ever.
Now that I'm here at the end of it all, I look around, and I can't see a single person having anything even close to Christmas.
Hopefully they relocated. To the moon, or the Triangulum Galaxy.
Maria my love stay away! It's the same! It's the same! It's the same!