And the third letter—well, the third one is from my health insurance. It contains a medical bill. Right away, something about it stinks to high heaven.
My previous bills would list procedures taken to keep me alive, dating back to the time I was in coma. But no, that’s not what’s in this bill. I recall that Linda had a mastectomy recently. With my own eyes, I saw the scars on her flat breast. So I prepare myself for seeing a phony charge for that procedure. But no, that’s not it, either. The procedure I’m being billed for—get this!—is a vasectomy.
I rub my eyes, look at it again, laugh out loud.
This is clearly a mistake. It should be the easiest thing in the world to prove wrong. First thing, tomorrow morning.
Utterly exhausted, I park for the night at UCI campus, in a secluded spot shaded by trees. Through the branches, I have a partial view of the apartment I used to rent just before the pandemic hit. Someone else lives there now. Someone else has just turned off the light.
I snuggle down in my sleeping bag. The moonlit scene, this dreamy image of my past, seems both familiar and alien to me now. I close my eyes and, despite the lack of certainty in my future, feel as if in the end, everything will be all right. Somehow.