Have you ever had a day that
started at midnight with such a nuisance about it that, sure as the world,
the time from then on would have to be filled with so many annoying
happenings it was for sure it would be twelve at night again before it all
ended? Wednesday of this week was that day.
“When I’m calling you-oo-oo-oo-oo-oo.”
She sang and the clock said it was twelve at night.
“Then I’ll answer too-oo-oo-oo-oo-oo,”
he replied. Two crickets were singing Indian Love Call to each other. One
beside my bed, somewhere, and the other was down the hall.
I threw something from off my
bed stand at her and there was blessed silence for a few minutes, that is,
until he called to her again.
The amorous pair continued
and I debated about whether I should move the heavy piece of Lane furniture
where I was sure she must be hiding.
On sang the crickets who were
so in love. Between their calls to each other I could hear Mother rattling
about the house, coughing quietly.
“She has this pneumonia bug I
had,” I’m thinking as I desperately longed for silence and sleep. Someplace
in between one oo-oo-oo-oo and the other there was blessed sleep and then I
was to be awakened early by the pair on the floor who were desperately
wishing to be together.
Through the morning my
daughter is trying to focus on study for an exam while I and my other
daughter concentrate on keeping her toddler from harm’s way. No little task.
My concern is that the neighbors do not believe I’m as inebriated as he
seems to be while we both stagger about the yard, me with fatigue and he on
legs of inexperience.
The little one and I come
through the house, down the hall, he is slipping and sliding for some reason
and I notice as I step on each tile, water comes up through the cracks.
“Is this a crisis? Should I
call my husband, or not.”
Fortunately my daughter had
not the duet of two love sick crickets during her night so she easily makes
“Dad, there is water coming
up through the tile? How can that be since you have a cement floor?” I hear
her ask and I’m realizing she has a better way of communicating with him
than I have.
“The vibrations of the
crickets must have caused an earthquake last night and the house is coming
apart!” may have been my analysis.
Later, much later, while I
sit in the waiting room of the hospital with Mother who has over-dosed
herself with Robitussin DM I’m learning she is not having a heart attack
after all. She is not incoherent and drunk for the first time at 93 but is
just “high on a narcotic” in the cough syrup, (the doctors words, not mine).
“What day is it?” someone
asks, and I answer, “Thursday.”
“Strange!” My brother says
and points at the calendar that tells us it is Wednesday. I ignore the smug
look on his face which suggests I’m as senile as someone else in the room.
After all, he doesn’t know about the Indian Love Call, the water I left my
husband with as he was tearing out the wall to get to the plumbing, the
puncture in my diabetic foot from something coming up through my barefoot
sandal while I had staggered around the yard with a one year old toddler who
is more exciting than an ,otherwise, predictable lover.
My duty is to appear to be
the pampered housewife as I stand in the emergency room in my slick, pressed
pant suit and coiffed hair, somehow managed from watching Carol Channing’s
“do” years ago. I patiently listen to their woes about how the
air-conditioning isn’t working so well in their offices,” and I know, oh
yes, I know, deep down they are secretly despising me for my sheltered life.
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