Tuesday, June 26, 2007

10 snapshots of my "vacation"

I believe Alanis Morrisette should have known about this. In later posts you will see my mom's house. If I'd shown you those first you'd never believe that this post-it note is on her microwave. Aunt Rena put it there 17 years ago when she came down to take care of mom during her chemo. Yeah, a paper towel is going to help. Uh huh.

I have been harboring my guilt for many years on this one. I thought that some house guests had stolen this camera about 7 years ago. It was a huge gift when I was a tween and I loved it and used it faithfully and I was crushed but also, even at 38 years of age, afraid to tell my parents. On my last day of work last week I noticed a box flap open and peeked inside. My camera! It needs a serious cleaning and I have no idea if the film inside is any good but I'm going to finish the roll and see what happens.

If you didn't know any better you might think that the step ladder there is for the cat to climb up to his bed. It is, to be sure, but it's also something that mom uses to load things into the washer, which is completely blocked by all the crap upon which the cat bed is resting.

This is the last kitten, Maria (Mah-rye-ah), from the set of kittens that also spawned Elvis, Anna, Pinto & Max. She's also the only girl of the 6 cats with indoor privileges at mom's house. We may not have done her a great service by sending her to the country like that. She lives on the upper levels.

Mostly this is what I saw all last week. No room to sort things inside so I'd haul it out to the curb and mom would sit on a kid's chair (the only type of chair we could extract) and sort things, touching every single item. I would provide her with "save boxes" and trash boxes and tote the contents of the trash boxes to the trash pile as they got full. But mostly I stood around being the silent observer. It's like with civil disobedience, sometimes the simple act of observation is what forestalls the violence. Sometimes not.

The panoramic view of the outside of mom's house. She likes to garden. She likes it more than cleaning. I refused to garden this week. She was not impressed.

Since I don't live back in my hometown I tend to read all the signs and check out all the attractions and stuff. So, as we were driving through town on Wednesday, I noticed that an insurance company sign announced a celebration of the 55 year anniversary of Auntie Blanche's retirement home...the next day. So I went. Here's Auntie Blanche checking out the flower pots she donated to the home when she moved down there almost 3 years ago. She planted them up specially in time for the celebration.

Weirdly I didn't take any pictures of the massive construction going on at the Bee house. As you can see from this shot, though, it's taking a toll on the poor pooch. Ally's only getting 6-10 naps a day and it's killing her.

The ladies at the celebration. Mom, Auntie Blanche and Miss Judy.

I didn't plan the order of these photos but it's fiting we should end here with the cat who, most likely, gave me the disease. If you made a list of all the cliched hateful things about cats you could check each one off for this cat. He's arrogant and a bully but also petrified of loud noises or fast movement. He requires attention almost constantly but entirely on his own schedule and he's not shy about letting you in on the schedule. The one time I moved his fat ass off of something last week he then proceeded to lie down in every tiny path I needed to use to get more stuff out of the house. You know me, you know that I'm willing to house and shelter even the most neurotic and broken animals and yet this cat I would willingly give away.


  1. You know I just love your writing. Always have. Silent observer. Hysterical.
    Yours is writing I am most likely to steal or quote or whatever.
    The microwave paper towel bit... I still ask that people do that.
    Cover your food people.
    I am Coo coo ka choo crazy about your Mother's Garden.
    And I know, the house clearing... not so fun.
    But every so often there is a treasure... a memory stolen from the past. Resaved.
    Get well soon.

  2. Man, there is a circle in heaven for you.

  3. I still like to imagine the week pantless.
    Sorry you're diseased, but I sure do love a yellow cat.