I flew to Washington, D.C. — my hometown — with my nurses, Jeff and Ceazar.
They are strong, smart Filipinos who help me because I hurt my knees some years ago and still have trouble walking through airports. When I got to my apartment at the Watergate, my jaw dropped. I have so many memories of President Richard Nixon with me, and with my parents, that for a millisecond I thought they were all still alive.
Of course, they are not, and I felt crushed. That night, Ceazar sat next to my bed, in a chair my mother had bought about 60 years ago, and listened to my childhood stories until I passed out.
He said I called out for my parents all night long. The next day we had a gala for The American Spectator. I heard speeches and conversation from incredibly brave men and women fighting against the modern horrors of mass abortion and normalized gender reassignment surgery.
They have been assaulted by Gestapo-like federal agents, imprisoned, threatened — and yet they persevere. These are true heroes. As we were leaving the Trump International Hotel, a small crowd of very loud demonstrators were marching on Pennsylvania Avenue, holding anti-pipeline signs and banging drums.
The stupidest people on Earth.
The next day we drove to my favorite place on the East Coast, Maryland’s Talbot County, on the Eastern Shore of the Chesapeake Bay.
We stopped at a McDonald’s near Bay Bridge. I ordered a cheeseburger with lots of salt.
A beautiful woman behind the counter with eyelashes an inch long said, "Lots of salt ain’t good for you." "I know," I said. "Thank you."
We drove to Oxford, Maryland. I’ll say it out loud: It’s the most adorable town in the world. Small, all old houses. No neon. No billboards. Just friendly, sensitive men and women living on their dividends and State Department pensions.
A magnificent restaurant called Salter’s serves a spectacular chicken liver parfait.
Another fabulous restaurant, Doc’s Sunset Grille, has a huge deck overlooking the immense Tred Avon River (pictured) where it intersects the glorious Chesapeake Bay. It serves a magnificent cream of crab soup and sushi.
To be sitting on that deck watching the sunset is magnificent.
Then, back into our SUV to get to the Watergate. Checking my emails, I came upon a letter from an old fraternity brother. It contained a link to an obituary from about a year ago for Scott Skinner, Esq.
I was simply staggered by it.
For 50 years Scott had been the loyal, devoted husband of Mary Just Skinner, Esq.
She had been an extremely close friend when I was in college at Columbia, and then for some time after that. Words fail me in trying to describe my admiration and aff ection for Mary. She was tall, beautiful, stupendously intelligent, well-dressed.
Her kindness and devotion to me changed my life.
Mary and Scott had a glorious marriage for five decades. They both were successful lawyers in Vermont. Both were in politics and public service their whole lives.
Both attained high office in Vermont and made the lives of Vermonters better.
He died about two years ago. I had not known about it until that email.
My heart breaks for Mary, one of the fi nest women on Earth. An exemplar of integrity to all. All night long — Ceazar, my night nurse, told me — I kept saying: "Mary, Mary, Mary, is there anything I can do?"
I don’t know what happens to wonderful men like Scott Skinner when they enter immortality. I hope it’s a lot like being in Oxford, Maryland.
This column originally published in October's Newsmax Magazine.
Ben Stein is a writer, an actor, and a lawyer who served as a speechwriter in the Nixon administration as the Watergate scandal unfolded. He began his unlikely road to stardom when director John Hughes hired him as the numbingly dull economics teacher in the urban comedy, "Ferris Bueller's Day Off." Read more more reports from Ben Stein — Click Here Now.
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