“An Aunt and an Ort, 5”

The last time I saw Aunt Cary was in February of 1969. My paternal grandmother had died and a service was held in a New York City funeral home. The service was void of any meaning since the presider had no information about her. The only attendees were my father, his brother my uncle, several cousins, me and Aunt Cary. This grandmother was tolerated rather than loved, and there was not much grieving going on.

As we stepped out of the gloom of the stark room onto West 43th Street, Cary exclaimed, “Let’s all go to Sardi’s and have a drink!” It was the perfect suggestion to cap off a dreadful early afternoon. We walked over to West 44th, pushed a couple of tables together, and all had a drink. No one goes to Sardi’s on a non Broadway afternoon, so we had the place and the autographed caricatures to ourselves.

I will always remember that afternoon as Cary brought our sorry group out of the secret guilt we all held from our lack of grief. Laughter, a drink, jokes, and tales about everything except Gran redeemed the time.

19 thoughts on ““An Aunt and an Ort, 5”

  1. This is just wonderful, and ‘very Cary’. She knew how to bring bring people together and NYC was her town. I would dearly love to have had cocktails with her at Sardi’s. Is Cary still living?

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  2. Elizabeth, I have been reading all these posts about your Aunt. She comes so alive in your memories of her and I wanted to read and continue to sit with her. I can understand why she was important to you. What a grand farewell in New York, especially coming off a rather difficult experience for your family. I hope she had some level of happiness and peace. Thank you for the touching remembrance and thank you for sharing it with us.

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  3. I’ve read each of these posts and am fascinated by it all, in a sad sort of way. I usually don’t like this line of stories but am struck by this one. Must be your hood writing. Sardis sounds fun.

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  4. What a precious aunt was Carey! You have told us so much in five short pieces. I found the story moving me greatly. I think about what you must have meant to your aunt, too. I’ve seen how hugely important an aunt can be to a child, especially if they happen to have no child of their own.

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