My neighbor stood in my front yard, talking on her cordless phone. Who knew why, but she had the person on the other end on speaker phone. While she remained her usual cold and stoic self, the woman she was talking to was sobbing in French, and I concluded that it must have been her sister. I had recently been informed that their mother had been diagnosed with a rare and inoperable form of brain cancer, and so I assumed that that was what they must have been talking about, but why she was in my front yard, and why she had her sister on speaker phone, for everyone to overhear, whether or not they understood French, I had absolutely no fucking idea. She seemed oblivious to the fact that I was sitting, in plain sight, on my front step, reading a book, less than ten feet away from her. Of course, I couldn’t understand what her sister was saying, but the anguish in her voice was universal – unmistakable – and it was only after a smiling woman walked past and greeted us both with a heartfelt "Good afternoon!" that she decided to continue her conversation in private.