So, I had this particularly shitty start to my day. I went to the dentist, which wound up turning into a painful visit to an oral surgeon, and a second visit to the dentist. It ate a huge chunk of my day, which in turn made me ultimately call out sick.
But actually, it was kind of yay. After I was done with my Daily Dose of Dental Devastation™, I was on my way home to take a nap, when I decided to call Frankie instead. I wanted to check up on him. I'd been worried about him since Andrea's passing away last week.
We spent hours talking to each other on the phone.
This is something we used to do all the time. We had fallen out of the habit of it in the past several years, for several reasons. One of which, he observed, was that Andrea was sort of his "local mako" doing the same sort of mindful processing right there with him that he and I used to do remotely.
Today, I was his "long distance Andrea", helping him do a bunch of processing like she used to do with him. We both got a good long laugh out of it.
Plus, we talked about this video game we both love, and which Andrea did too, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild.
This is where the shrine part comes in. I lamented to him how I was well and truly stuck on this one particular shrine, the Shora Hah. It's finicky and challenging, requiring puzzle solving skills and some degree of precision targeting and quick reflexes.
It's horribly annoying is what it is.
Frankie gave me some tips, and we talked about how much Andrea loved the game too, and how they would sit and discuss the game together, try to look at things in it differently, see the problems from different angles.
We had this moment where we both got very quiet, when we realized we weren't talking about the game anymore, but rather how Andrea did pretty much everything.
Just a few minutes later, I got past the part I'd been stuck on for days, and then, keeping that facile, open perspective ideal in mind, quickly solved the rest of the shrine, and got all the way to the end.
I worked on the very last puzzle, and Frankie told me, laughing, how he had been STUMPED on it, and Andrea had made this simple suggestion that turned out to be the answer.
(It's to stand right in the center, and do a spin-attack.)
I said I'd tried that, but it only got half the torches. He told me to step back a bit, to "center myself more".
I said, "Center myself. Right. Thanks, Andrea."
We both laughed together. She's still with us.