Wednesday, July 13, 2016

A Day Outside

If you knew how deeply my summer hibernation goes you'd understand how newsworthy my leaving the house is. My mission is to renew prescriptions for blood pressure medicine, but, says the pharmacist, I've used up all my renewals and she has to call the doctor. My mission is to get my hair buzzed short enough that I can shave my head, but i am getting cold feet. My mission, says Jack in the Box, is to avail myself of a two-for-one deal on Buttery Jacks, and so far, in this alone have i succeeded.
A reminder i set for next time i come into this shopping center fired to remind me there is a place here where I can get tea & scones, a subject of much discussion after I published the biscuit and tea blog last week.
By the way, I recommend the Buttery Jack w/bacon and added jalapeƱos ($0.40 extra).
Yesterday my mother knocked on my door and asked when the burial was. This is a tough question anytime, especially first thing in the morning.
"Who died?"
"You haven't heard?"
"No. Who died?"
"Can you find out when the burial is?"
"Who died?"
"Jane died," she says. Jane is my cousin, her niece.
"How did she die?" At first I'm taken in by this—well, 90% of the way anyway.
"She was in a car crash."
I have Jane's number because we're in semi-regular contact. Scarcely a week goes by that we don't exchange a volley of text messages, and once a month or so we grab lunch somewhere—tacos, hamburgers at Top Notch, which tends to figure in Linklater movies, though that doesn't help their burgers, or Chinese. Her mother, my mother's sister, had dementia too, so she's a big source of information. It would be a deep loss to lose Jane because she's the closest I have to a sister. We grew up together. We survived the insanities of our parents together.
I am flashing on the time that the Basque Separatists set off a bomb in a crowded car of a commuter train in Madrid. The authorities had to set up a temporary morgue, and the people who worked there talked about how eerie and sad it was that the friends and relatives of the dead were calling to see if they were OK. So one hand I'm pretty sure my mother has been vividly dreaming again, but on the other, in the off chance that something has really happened, I hate to inflict that eerie Madrid sadness on anyone.
I text my brother who knows nothing. Far less sensitive to things that happened in Madrid, he says to call Jane.
So at 8:14 a.m. I text Jane. Even if she is ok, there's only a slim chance she'll answer because she's a night person too. "Are you ok?"
But only three minutes later she answers, "Yes." I'm almost expecting a But clause but none comes.
"My mom thinks you're dead. Can you call her?"
Jane, having been through dementia before, takes this in stride. "Oh no. I'm fine. I'll be coming to see her on Friday   yes I'll call her on the house phone?"
But my mother has let the battery in her phone run down. So I call Jane on my cell phone.
My mother recognizes Jane's voice, but she figures I am tricking her, which is the sort of thing computers are for. She keeps asking Jane questions to trip us up, but Jane gets all the answers right. Finally she realizes Jane, who says she's coming to visit on Friday, probably is alive and well, so she wanders off.
This Jack food has been a lot, so I will pass on the tea & scones here. Guess I'll move on to Walmart to hunt for walking/cycling shorts. There's a Teahaus that I like nearby, though I don't recall scones on their menu.
Writing a blog on my phone like this is a bit of an experiment. How much of what I now do on my desktop computer—the blog, the podcast, videos—can I do from this phone? I believe in traveling light, not just on the road, but on the journey through life. The 100-thing challenge fires my passions. I note even now, since I've been a hermit, that things are piling up. So a blog written seated at Jack in the Box is a light test of the challenges I'll face on the road.