It’s June, and the political world is at DEFCON 1. Almost everyone at the White House is under investigation, from the plumber in the basement to the milkman at the back door. Some say they saw the lawn man being held at gunpoint after his mower backfired. That’s totally, 100 percent unconfirmed.

Meanwhile, Mrs. Trump, Melania to Donald, FLOTUS to the press and “Muse” to the secret service, and her son, Barron, after having retired from their exciting fun life in the golden towers of Manhattan, are coming home to take up residence on Pennsylvania Avenue.

Some of the lawn helpers thought they already had seen FLOTUS or “Muse” knocking on the back door as son Barron stood by with the luggage.

A few camera-toting tourists outside the almost impenetrable fence claim they saw a White House gardener, now released by the Secret Service, rushing to help FLOTUS, but he was stopped by Capitol Police and arrested. Again, none of this has been confirmed by MSNBC.

Here, on a beautiful, tree-lined street in beautiful Waterville, a similar situation, no less important but unreported by the press, is occurring. She is coming home. There will be no fanfare, no Secret Service code names, gardeners, milkmen or armed guards to welcome her. She will arrive at the end of the day, not in a huge black SUV, but in her new, white Prius.


This morning I was awakened at 8 a.m. Kay Devine, known to me and my readers as She and unknown to the Secret Service, was prepping to go in for her last few days as a teacher before she officially and fully retires and moves back full time, 24/7, forever, permanently into the house.

As is her habit, She kissed my forehead, reminded me of several tasks and errands I was to complete, and then paused at the bedroom door.

“Just think,” She whispered, “these are my last full days as a teacher and three-quarter financial provider to the family. From now on, I’ll be back in the house to spend every minute of the day forever and ever, 100 percent without a break and into eternity, with you and the dog and the bird. Are you excited?”

I mumbled something and then fell back asleep for a few more minutes. Suddenly, after I heard the white Prius pull away, my eyes snapped open with a click so audible that Jack the dog barked and Ms. Kramer the bird screamed.

It’s not like I’ve been unprepared for this juncture in our decadeslong voyage together. I could see it coming. For over 50 years from Los Angeles to New York to Maine, She, my partner in life and love, has played the role of master teacher.

Each day she has arisen an hour or two before me, eaten a quiet, leisurely breakfast, dressed in one of her 1,001 carefully selected outfits, and gone to her life as educator and provider, a role she has not only enjoyed but was required to hold on to to keep the various wolves from the door.

Without complaint or any visible signs of joy, she has been counting the hours, minutes and seconds leading up to spending the rest of her life, each day from sunrise to sunset, with the man she loves, the emotionally damaged pretend writer who prepares her meals, drives her new car and cares for her beloved dog. I jest, of course (with fingers crossed).

All in all, we will find a way to re-embrace the magic glow of our years that has never really gone away. Those hundreds of Post-it notes on the fridge will be replaced by whispered commands given with a smile.

In many ways it’s a good thing.

The house will return to glowing neatness. Jack, comforted by her constant presence, will stop growling at me when I enter her office, and the bird will be fed on time.

I’ve done my best over the years, manning the wheel while she generously provided immeasurable amounts to our slender income. And now perhaps the grim specter of penury will draw us even closer together. One hopes.

Meanwhile, back on Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington, FLOTUS (”Muse”) has come home for good and all to spend, forever and ever, permanently, 100 percent, into eternity, each minute of every day in the living quarters with POTUS, aka “Mogul,” aka 45. More breaking news at 11:00.

J.P. Devine is a Waterville writer.