Almost three weeks ago, I rushed out of my apartment to catch an early morning flight to Chicago for an evening wedding. I had been out at a party the night before, and would be back again in less than 24 hours (I assumed, and so thought I knew this to be true), and took with me a red silk evening gown, a pair of gold evening shoes, and a fur coat. The next day, I barely made the last flight back to New York, but too late to return to my apartment before the evacuation order was issued. I plan to return this afternoon. At one point, I lost a set of borrowed housekeys and wept on a park bench until another woman in a fur coat stopped and tried to help me. I hadn't cried in three years. I realized that one never has any real sense of what another person is going through. I learned that words are not enough. I found out that more people cared about me, far more than I ever would have known in my life otherwise. My unshakeable faith in spiritual matters and astrology is gone, replaced by what I can't quite say. In some ways, I woke up from a kind of slumber that might have otherwise lasted forever; a beautiful dream but it was only that. My long-held hopes for a holiday will have to be deferred so that I can save up to move when my lease is up in the spring. This year, in truth, has been altogether bruising, and yet I have received so much. I saw my brother briefly and at one point, he observed that my sister interrupts herself when she expresses dismay and says, "But I'm so grateful for everything." I said, we live together. That's how we talk; and we are, beyond measure.