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The email read, “…as you all know, Leslie is planning to retire at the end of the academic year.” My eyes stopped at the end of that sentence. Retire? I didn’t know she was planning to retire. I immediately began to worry. How could Leslie retire? What about conference presentations, data collection, Sociolinguistics class? Then I thought about it for another minute and started to smile. “Yeah,” I sighed, “I guess I can imagine it.” Leslie peering through binoculars at birds, hiking with Bruce in national parks, and delving into Native American arts. Good-bye staff meetings, deadlines, paperwork, committees, and email. In my mind’s eye, however, I see the door to Room 317 slam shut, and in the darkness, I start to reminisce about the many years I spent in that office as a student, assistant, and in the end, a friend.