41. AmbulanceIt had started off as such a nice day, Lilly thought as they loaded her into the ambulance.

Her daughter had said that they should go for a walk in the park, it being such a nice day. Lilly wanted to stay inside and be an old lady, but her daughter had been insistent. “Mom, you need some fresh air,” she had said. “You’re gonna dry up and blow away in here all day every day.”

Truth be told, that hadn’t sounded half bad to Lilly. Her best friend, Fay, had been laid to rest two days before, officially making Lilly the last of her peers standing — an honor she didn’t want. Her daughter and her family were kind, certainly, but there was no one else who remembered things they way she did. Blowing away to join her husband and their friends didn’t sound unpleasant at all.

Her daughter was worried, she knew, and was only trying to help, so Lilly decided to let her. She put on a sweater — it was a warm spring day, but Lilly always ran a bit cold these days — and they went to the park.

As they walked, her daughter slowing down to Lilly’s natural speed, Lilly had to admit that the sun on her face did feel good. Her mood started to lift, despite herself.

Then, she started to feel faint, and felt a pain under her left shoulder blade, and the reality of blowing away became different from the thought of it.