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    The Man in the Calico Dress

    So as you guys all know, I go to physical therapy two days a week. I go to the Wells House in Johnstown and I have a great therapist named Robin. It was Monday October 31st, Halloween for those of you not paying attention, and I am in PT waiting for Robin to finish with her last patient.

    There was this person dressed as an old woman complete with face mask who seemed to be leering at me. Herman was with me that day, but he was off doing his own exercises. I started to get uncomfortable as I wondered why this person was staring at me. Finally, the masked person approached me.

    Although the person didn’t say anything, one of the other therapists named Sue was walking by and casually said, “Hey, Don, how you doing?” Well, that gave it away. It was my friend Don McCoy, who often comes to chat and be helpful during my physical therapy sessions. He may be in his late 70’s, but getting dressed up like this shows he’s really young at heart.

    I hadn’t seen him in quite awhile, as I go on Mondays and Wednesdays and he comes to visit the Wells House on Fridays. But he had come especially to see me (among others, I suppose) and to give me a bit of a scare as well. He is very helpful when he is at the Wells House. Often he assists PT aides and residents as well.

    When Herman saw it was Don in the dress, he asked, “Do you only wear a dress on Halloween, or is this one of your regular outfits?” But that’s Herman for you.

    Physical therapy went well that day, and Don was good at distracting me as Robin was stretching my legs and arms. This isn’t always a pleasant experience, as my muscles have a mind of their own. So Don’s distraction was a welcome one.

    The reason I hadn’t seen Don in awhile was that his wife Ginny had had a hip replacement and he’d been busy helping out with her. He is always helping someone it seems.

    Halloween has always been a bit iffy as a holiday for me. Not just the marauding kids looking for candy, but grownups dressed oddly at work on that day seems a bit strange. But maybe we all just need to lighten up. I know Don helps lighten things up for me at PT and I hope you have someone like that in your life too.


    Kathryn Spira, a native of Cleveland who pursued an acting career in NYC and Los Angeles, now pursues free lance writing from Caroga Lake in Fulton County. Previous columns may be accessed at her web site www.kathrynskorner.com