REPORT A PROBLEM
Beltane. Tanz in den Mai. May Day. And Ė a full moon! Admittedly, I missed it this year. Entirely. I had the thought on arriving home on Friday night that I had made it home in time for Beltane - hurrah. It was a rush of things over the weekend: the house, to unpack, to get ready for work. And in the exhausted elation of completing the kitchen selections yesterday meant my brain just shut down last night. Today, however, it is a beautiful, warm spring day. And never mind work, I went out to lunch with a friend to catch up.
The goal of commercializing something is to make money, right? Why would we ever give away to every.single.user something of real value, and which itself is the primary driver of our cost of doing business? Honestly, four separate people didnít understand that this is what they were doing? Or no one thought to mention it, because it was the CEO and the Director who said ďdo itĒ? I am beyond shocked and appalled, whatever that state is. This action completely undermines the licensing concepts weíre developing - and theyíre surprised that Iím upset about it?
I think Iíve missed our peepers. I heard them the first day or so I was back, but I donít know if the heat got to them or what, Iíve not heard them since. The frogs in The Woods were nice, but they were more substantial than the delicate peepers I remember from last year. I didnít make note here in this space of when that was. Iíve been thinking about trying to use this space as more of a garden / nature diary. It would seem to be a better use than ranting about work.
Friday Nite! Knit nite! I do so prefer the Friday gatherings. I know, Iíve said it before, but this is how knit nite is supposed to be. When it is on Thursdays I get completely discombobulated at work, ending up overwhelmed at all the stuff that is supposed to get done by the end of the week. . . wait, Iím going to knit nite, so that means it is all due NOW? It always takes me some time to realize I have one more whole day of working Ė which is why the pile always seems overwhelming at 4:00 PM.
We almost missed Derby Day. Donít care that it is also Cinco De Mayo, the Kentucky Derby is what is important in our household. After spending several hours in the garden, watching the Derby was a treat, even if it wasnít Hot Browns for dinner this year. For a while there, I was almost afraid to watch the Triple Crown races, too many horses hurt. But to have such a good race on a muddy track, with no mishaps, no bad outcomes! A clean race with a strong finish by a favorite Ėand the trainer now a 5 time winner!
Presto! Magic! Change-O! Like that, the new dishwasher is purchased and scheduled to arrive on Tuesday so it is here for the big install on Wednesday. Iíve been waiting for this new dishwasher since we moved into the house. And as countertops are to go in this week, and final plumbing & electrical work as well, I am hoping next weekend we can start putting stuff into cabinets. The tile wonít be here for two more weeks, but we can start using the kitchen without the backsplash. Can it be that the end of the renovation is finally in sight?
I am so glad I found a massage therapist who knows what sheís doing and has a medical massage background. She listens to my body, and I always feel so much better after seeing her. If I am good and careful, that feeling will last several days, but sometimes I ruin it within a day. My appointment was more than a week after coming back from my parents, so I did work out some of the knots and kinks on my own. I just wish her schedule had more than just Mondays available, but Iíll take what I can get.
So the big install will now be Thursday. It seems like there is nothing but stalling, stalling, and more stalling on the kitchen renovation. It has been two months since we packed up the kitchen and moved the small appliances and the cat food bowls into the knitty room. The amount of crap and debris accumulates in a week is somewhat concerning. Thereís no room to turn around or put anything down. We are both tired of living in the chaos, but we should have sink and stove back in just a few days, which will be a big help.
The news could have been better, but it could have been worse. Thatís the way to think of it. There is a mass of some sort. It may still be the pneumonia. It may be some other infection. It could be pleurisy, which sounds like some old-time disease that surely has been eradicated with modern medicine, but clearly / sadly, that isnít the case, if it is on the list of possible suspects. No one is (yet) talking about worse alternatives. And itís a week of waiting for the test.
Iíve been back for two weeks now and Iím still trying to catch up at work. Never mind actually getting ahead of things again. And I think whatever motivation I had to try and keep up at the office has left me. Temporarily or permanently, I donít know. But thereís a whole lot of ďI donít careĒ going on in me right now. I canít be bothered to chase things down right now, thereís more than enough to do with adding to the pile. Iím still tired, and frankly, concerned about Michigan. Dad doesnít seem to be getting truly better.
Dad is in the hospital. There was no waiting back on the tests, he was in so much pain they went to the ER and they immediately determined he needed a tube to drain the lung. The thought is maybe five days and heíll be out. Mom seems like sheís got this, so I am not immediately heading out; if heís in fact better and out in five days, my presence will not add any real value. But if heís not better in a few days, then I need all the time I can get to prep for another trip.
The garden is really beginning: iris are showing buds everywhere, and the peonies are covered with small tight balls that will explode into the fragrant blossoms I love so much. Violas are beginning to take off and my summer perennials are starting to grow. The Lemony Lace elderflower Iíve wanted for so long has finally arrived, and himself really is digging the foliage. Of course, I bought some more plants to fill in the gaps; the ďnewĒ lavender doesnít look like it has survived. If it would stop raining long enough to get the plants in the ground. . .
In hindsight, sending mom one of her mothersí day present so early this year was a very good idea, she did have an opportunity to take a look at the book before the current wave of crisis hit. And Iím so glad I did not order any flowers for delivery to the house, since sheís still sitting with Dad at the hospital. As others post photos with family gathered, I am glad I was so recently there. This was a rough day for Mom, and Iím beginning to think I may be headed there soon, unless something changes very quickly.
I spend the day trying to prepare the ship to be abandoned. Mom hasnít asked for help, but I donít think she can hold out much longer. So I do the essential tasks, pull together information, print out what is needed, and put the office on alert that I may be needing to travel again soon. I really donít want to go, thereís so much going on here and now. But I donít really have a choice, this is the down side of my being an only child. I keep hoping for a last minute reprieve, courtesy of modern medicine.
Dad is still in the hospital, the tube isnít working, and Momís exhausted beyond her ability. There really is no way of escaping the fact that the only relief she will get is from me, being there. I am not up for another $600-plus airfare and shuttle to the airport, so I will be driving. I donít have to worry so much about packing, and perhaps I can bring home the Telefunken radio. Again, I can hear the relief in Momís voice when I tell her Iím coming out, even though she still hasnít asked for help Ė she needs it.
When I got the call yesterday that the tile was in, I was astonished. Making a decision about the trim tile was not as bad as I thought, and the grout was easy. Hey, something about the project has to be easy, right? I have to hope that in the next week or so while I am gone, the kitchen will be done. The tile can now be installed; that will leave the way clear for the final floor screening. There are only a few days of work left, so it should easily be done the time I am back.
As dismayed by I am at the necessary re-routing into local roads Ė which takes at least an hour, once I even figure out what to do in the wilds of New Jersey Ė it is clear that a major accident has happened and that someone is having a far worse day than I am. When my circuitous path takes me on an overpass above the actual scene of the accident, I am stunned by the number and variety of emergency response vehicles. I still have no idea what actually happened, but I can only hope that someone was only one person.
Arrived at the hospital at shortly afternoon today. I was able to find dad and mom and was able to organizing ordering a late lunch from Panera. Mom said dad ate more than he has since being in the hospital, which is a week now. After spending the afternoon with Dad, who is both better and worse than expected, I finally head for the Woods sometime around 8 PM, knowing that I'm will need to find something for dinner on the way home, since the house has been essentially empty for a week. Target seems to be my best option.
I am sleeping in my parentsí bed. I am honestly too tired to be too freaked out by that fact. Mom is sleeping in the chair at the hospital. Even though they wonít be giving Dad any more of the medicine that made him forget everything, she wonít leave him alone, not for a minute. She is exhausted and moving pretty damn slow herself, and her treck to and from the parking ramp each day is about the only exercise she is getting. We are covering Dad in shifts, with about an hour or two of overlap in the evenings.
Today is their anniversary. It was a good day: with only a little bullying, I got dad to take a bit of a walk about. It was a bad day: They didnít much like the special dinner I brought in to the hospital. It was a good day: the nurse thinks that Dad will be released before sheís back on shift in 3 days. It was a bad day: we are sooooo very not ready for dad to come home; thereís still no bed downstairs, the carpet clean hasnít been scheduled. Today is their anniversary Ė it was a good day.
As the rain began to fall, the four radio guys arrived. All of them at least dadís age, and one is on this third pacemaker, but they get the desk apart and out the door in short order and out into the truck before the heavens completely open up. And then the credenza is removed, and the sofa and suddenly theyíre packed up and gone in a flurry, after mom's phone call stating theyíre leaving the hospital now. Without saying goodbye there's no trace of them left behind except the fax machine still sitting on the dryer, forgotten and forlorn.
Find a bed was incredibly easy. The sales guy was from Vermont originally and had an aging mother in Syracuse he was worried about this past winter, so there was a common ground established rather quickly. But our success in finding a bed in 30 minutes was short-lived, when it became apparent that the carpet was not going to be salvaged by a stretch and clean. It would make the carpet more of a problem than just leaving it as it is now. This news causes mom almost to break down, but dad has already proven he will sleep upstairs.
Woody schmoozes with me happily now, going walkabout on my shoulders. And Maddy, scaredy-cat that he is, was so desperate for attention and brushing amidst the chaos of people coming and going at all hours, and furniture in and out, strangers in and out, that he allowed me to brush him tonight. And it wasnít just a few quick strokes but a serious brushing. One that requires me to empty out the completely full brush out not once, but twice. I probably wonít be able to pet him in the morning, but this was a sweet interlude with the Anti-Boo.
Dad is improving daily, but it is slow going. Some of his focus is returning, but thereís still daily repetition of the same questions from him. I donít know if the short term memory issues stem from dementia, or from issues related to all the drugs and pain heís experienced in the last few months. Or maybe it's because heís not using his oxygen at night; that seems to have fallen by the wayside since his return. It doesnít really matter right now, as there's not really a lot to be done until he sees a real doctor next month.
I have begun to seriously wonder where we will end up in the next few years. I honestly don't know if we will stay in our current house once I am no longer working, due to the expense, which is primarily the taxes. And given everything going on with my parents and elsewhere, I think I need to retire sooner rather than later. If I wait until I am 62, he will be 70, and Iím afraid that will be too little, too late. I want some good years gallivanting about the country with him. Life is too damn short.
I havenít heard the turkeys on the ridge in the early morning, this time around; it probably happens pretty early at this point. We did see them on display in the driveway on late morning, parading, strutting, fanning their tails. I saw a few deer at a distance. One afternoon, there was fox, running through the woods one afternoon, startling to see at that time of day. Today, we were dive-bombed by a turkey on the way back from getting plants. Iíve never seen a turkey in flight before, but suddenly it was gliding low directly in front of us.
I honestly don't know if I've ever driven the road before. Many houses are clearly new in the last 30 years. There are a few very old farmhouses which may or may not still be part of working farms, it is hard to tell. One particular farmhouse with strong Federal style lines, with beautiful landscaping, seems somewhat out of place. It would be right at home on the east coast. Neither one of us wants to live surrounded by plowed farm fields on three sides, but I am sure at 10 PM on a night, there is still light visible.
Memorial day in Island City was really, really hot. It must be at least 35 years if my math is correct since I was here for Memorial day and I have no memory of that earlier time. I did get to see at least one, maybe two hummingbirds flitting about the hummingbird feeder. We planted flowers in the porch railing boxes so that summer color can come to the Woods. And there was ice cream at Plainwell Ice Cream: ice cream sundaes for everyone although we all had different flavors, we all had whipped cream, no nuts and no cherries.
Sitting with dad at the kitchen table, before starting the long drive home today, dad says he does not remember the hospital at all. While that may be a bit of hyperbole on his part, it is scary if he doesnít remember eleven days in the hospital. I hope the real doctor he sees next month will be concerned about dadís memory function. Dad also is sharing memories that are totally inaccurate such as his shenanigans with the hose, and when we were planting the flowers, which is perhaps more concerning than the absence of memories that he should have.
After traveling for ten hours at 70 miles an hour, I still felt as though my body were moving, hurtling through space as I laid in bed last night, trying to get to sleep. I clutched the bed and tried to snuggle deeply, but it still felt like my body was floating, or bobbing about on water; it was most disconcerting. I don't remember feeling that way driving out, perhaps because there were so many times when I was barely moving due to traffic and construction sites. This time there were hardly any delays from construction and I made excellent time.
Home. It is so very nice to be home. I soaked in a hot bath last night and started a new paperback novel. Waking up in my own bed was very, very nice, even if a bit earlier than Iíd wanted. Having coffee with my husband, sitting comfortably on the couch and slowly greeting the day was delicious. Iíve got different clothes to choose from today, and I didnít have to sit on the floor to find them1 OK, perhaps that was a bit mean spirited, but Iíve spent a lot of time digging through suitcases on the floor lately.
The Tip Jar