I thought, as I reached my ‘golden years’, that I would have less to deal with. Sadly, another myth gone up in flames. But I guess I asked for it by offering refuge for my adult children when they asked for a place to stay. When they were out on their own, it was possible to ignore phone calls, pretend I’d missed the email (always plausible since they know how incompetent I am with computers and technology generally), or forgotten the task I’d been asked to do (blame it on Alzheimer’s’ — althoughI don’t want to overuse this one since there may come a day when I actually am demented). But with L’il Sis and Crazy D right here, I can’t ignore much.
A couple of weeks ago, Gill was trying to do some paper work relating to her new job and new UK visa. Since she was here, she personally searched for documents in what used to be her room but is now L’il Sis and The Pig’s domain. Specifically, she needed her PhD diploma and her M.A. certificate. She found the PhD easily. But the M.A. was problematic.
“What kind of idiot employer asks for your M.A. when they have a record of your PhD?” I railed. “Last time I looked, the PhD trumps everything else.”
“Ma, I didn’t make the visa rules. I just try to follow them. Let me put it this way, if I don’t get this visa and hence this job, I’ll be back at yours within ten days. That means you will permanently be sharing your bathroom with six canaries.”
“Say no more. . . I see where you’re going with this.” The second we ended the conversation, I went trolling in what is now her sister’s room for the documentation. I found it on the first go! But of course, the UK government needed it yesterday. I raced to the post office, addressed the envelope and mailed it to Gill.
I returned home to discover a notice from Purolator that they had tried to leave a package but couldn’t. I could take the notice (but not until the following day) and retrieve the item. Didn’t know what it was, who it was from, or who sent it. Dutifully, the next day I schlepped to the outlet to get said package. It was a huge box — from Crazy D to himself. Turns out it was his clothes (dirty, I’m sure) — the ones he had worn to take the plane to Calgary to begin his bike ride. Basically, all he is wearing for the four weeks on the bike is his special riding gear. I know how dirty and foul-smelling that gear will be when he’s done. That begs the question: what will be wear to get home on the plane? I feel certain none of the other passengers will want him on the plane in his gear. Is he planning to fly naked or hit a Walmart for jeans on the way to the plane?All I know is I don’t want to be involved.
The following day, L’il Sis warned me to expect a package. She has taken to buying stuff on Amazon. She believes the convenience of buying, paying, and having things delivered with the mere click of a computer key is the ultimate in civilization. Of course, she isn’t the one waiting in for the package, signing for it, or taking it to the post office when it doesn’t fit. She’d do it herself, of course, but she’s too busy working to pay for The Pig’s (her beagle) kibble…the kibble that is really only a supplement to the homemade chicken soup I make every day for her, when I’ve walked her and tried, with my best psychiatric technique, to console the Saddest Beagle Ever for being ‘abandoned’ by her ‘mommy’ during the day.
I admit that I’m a softie. But I have come to realize that there’s a reason I don’t accomplish much for myself during the day. It came to me during a walk with The Pig. After being constipated for two days, she finally squatted, let rip and produced a gigantic poop — which I, as a conscientious citizen, picked up. For me, it was an epiphany. And a symbolic shit. I’m too busy dealing with other peoples’ shit to tend to my own. I can’t fit myself in. At least I’m not constipated.