Mary Lu W11D5

Week 12 – Tuesday

Welcome to SeniorVu’s daily ‘flash fiction’, with the continuing saga of Mary Lu at the Vu. Mary Lu is a 78-year old fictitious resident of a fictitious senior living community called Hickory Hills View (a.k.a. The Vu).  Every night, while her husband Bobby (he’s fictitious too) sleeps next to her, she sends her sister Carolyn (yup, fictitious) an entertaining email updating her on the day. These are her stories. We hope they become as addictive as your morning cup of coffee. 

Disclaimer: Even though these stories may sound familiar to your community, the story, all names, characters, and incidents portrayed in this series are fictitious. No identification with actual persons (living or deceased), places, buildings, and products is intended or should be inferred.


Jackie’s back in town and we decided to talk strategy while I sat under the hair dryer at the salon.

She wants to change tactics in hopes of finally learning which of our neighbors spent 16 years in prison. We’ve been doing quiet background checks and sifting through old police records. That’s needle-in-a-haystack stuff. Instead, she suggests using a whisper network among some of those we’ve ruled out in the hopes of generating clues.

“I don’t know Max Jones on the top floor, but maybe one of his neighbors does,” Jackie reasoned. “Maybe they know about his past.”

It seemed risky. If the whole point was not letting the guy know that we’re wise to him, asking around is a sure way for him to find out.

“The whole point is to know whether someone you see every day might be dangerous,” she said. “And I guarantee you, we’ll know faster this way.”

I was reluctantly convinced. We’ll start quietly asking questions this week.

JoBeth came over with a mirror and it was time for the reveal. I had Jackie close her eyes. I closed mine, too.

“So,” JoBeth said. “It’s certainly… different.”

I eased my eyes open and looked. My gray had given way to a honey brown. I’d had JoBeth give me my first dye job since the end of Bill Clinton’s administration. It was a little jarring. I wasn’t sure I liked it.

Jackie had never seen me without the gray.

“What the holy heck did you do that for?” she asked.

I explained that an old high school nemesis was meeting me for lunch on Wednesday and I didn’t want to look like an old hag.

“How do you know she doesn’t look like an old hag?” Jackie asked.

That hadn’t even occurred to me. Anna was always careful about her appearance back in school, so I assumed she’d aged well. But maybe not.

Jackie searched Facebook and Google for pictures of Anna Aaronsen and Anna York, but we couldn’t find her. I guess I’ll just have to be surprised.

Bobby was surprised, too. The look on his face went from shock to happy, like a trip back in time. (I think he was a little turned on.)

“Don’t get used to it,” I told him. “It’s a one-time deal.”

“I like it,” he said, smiling and offering his hand.

He instructed Google Home to play Sam Cooke’s “You Send Me,” a song we danced at our wedding.

We danced all night.

More tomorrow,

LuP.S. To catch up on all of my previous Mary Lu at The Vu posts, click here to go back to Day 1.