Counting Her Blessings
The cat died in Ben's arms. "I took Spike from him, and Richard found me
on the couch the next morning. He said, ‘The kids understood and went to bed,
and you're still sitting here holding a dead cat.' We wrapped Spike in a
beautiful scarf, and we had workmen dig a grave," Vieira recalls.
"Nobody explained to them who the grave was for. They thought it was for
Richard and made it way too big. We put ‘Circle of Life' on, and danced around
it, and everybody wrote something for Spike and put it in. I spent hours
filling in that grave."
The Spike story is vintage Vieira: funny and moving, with a journalist's eye
for detail and a mother's eye for italicizing a pivotal life lesson that the
kids will remember. I'm trying to decide if I'd rather be her best friend or
her child when I hear her use the words "roots and wings." I think
she's back to her Thanksgiving menu, but no, the phrase turns out to be what
parents are meant to give their children. "I can't take credit for it,"
she says. "We heard it when our kids started nursery school. It's
bittersweet." And delicious, and healthy. Just the sort of recipe that
works best for Meredith Vieira.
Originally published on October 10, 2007
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