Saturday, September 24, 2011

Six Word Saturday

*My contribution to the project:

Pummelling the pull of potato chips.

*Found via a blog I read. 

Friday, September 16, 2011

September Eleventh, Twenty Eleven

On this date in history, in addition to recollections reverent memorials and extending warm birthday greetings,   I will recall the first conversation I'v had with my father in . . . I don't know how long. It would have been long before Katrina, for he called sometime after, but got my machine. I called him back, getting his machine and from that moment to this, SILENCE.
He'd called me way back when in (delayed) response my my reaching out to him in the aftermath of Katrina. The various (and as it turns out, unreliable) reports were of little comfort and I sought to communicate with him directly. That effort added yet another chapter to our storied history.

Slowly churn to September, Twenty Eleven. In the round-about, circuitous, in-direct style of communication that has become an Olympic sport for my Aunts, Uncles, Cousins, Brothers, and Mom. I discovered my dad has lung cancer.

I did the only thing this only daughter could do, I contacted my younger brother and asked for our dad's contact information. And then I called James. As it happens he wasn't home. His mother-in-law volunteered (way too much, imo) information and to take a message. The exchange between she and I, who have never met was a bit like the Costello's "Who's On First?" routine.

When she asked which daughter I was I admit to having my heart shattered in a million different pieces. Later, after thinking it through I rationalized that there wasn't any reason to expect her to know he only has the one and for that one to be on the phone on that given Saturday. But still, I'd decided my next attempt at communication would not be via the telephone.

On Sunday, September Eleventh, Twenty Eleven my dad called me. His opening line, "do you know who this is?" mended the million shattered pieces to some degree. Our conversation was easy, considering the history  and we talked for as long as his energy would allow. He was direct and frank about the onset of the disease, the treatments, the side-effects, and his resignation to what is and what will be.
He signed off with professions of love and promises to stay in touch. We may or may not talk again and I think I may be fine either way because I do now have September Eleventh, Twenty Eleven and it shall be woven into the fabric that is the story of James and his only daughter, Deborah.  

Saturday, September 03, 2011

End of Season

Someone in my building or someone (at the very least) with access to the front hall of the building sliced down more than half of the sunflower stalk growing, flourishing out in the front yard. I'd left my pruning shears sitting on one of the tables (holding my indoor plants) planning to use them at some point during the week to touch up some of the shrubbery following some aggressive growth following all the rain we've had. 

My usual practice is to put all the yard tools away in one of the various storage nooks that populate the first floor of the condo building. But since I was planning to do some (light) weekday work, I'd left the shears at an easier access point. I'm trying not to take as a coincidence that the chopping down occurred during or just after  Moe, Larry, and Curly of twenty-first century plumbing were in the space to replace a blown water heater. THAT, is another tale. 

To say that I'm incensed over the incident is putting it mildly. I'd said a few of these: 

upon leaving for work Friday morning and seeing the mutilation of my stately sunflowers.

Our small, nine unit condo building is self managed. I get a break on my assessments for caring for the common areas; sweeping, mopping, wiping down the halls and caring for the grounds. I shovel snow and clear ice in the winter, care for the yard , and keep the rear court-yard clean.

I tend to every plant and shrub (most of which I purchased out of my own funds) weeding, watering, and pruning as needed. I never maintained a yard before moving into this building. I've been an apartment dweller (mostly surrounded by concrete or yards "hands off" to tenants) my entire life. This little patch of earth was a new, exciting experience for me. I work diligently to clear trash, reset stepping stones, eradicate weeds (and mushrooms) and generally keep the area as appealing as possible given the limitations of time and budget.

For someone to rudely attack my work, my investment is beyond mean and it makes me want to

 I did scream. Ask Neta, she'd called early Friday morning as I was leaving for work. I walked outside, saw the mutilation and . . . yeah, WTF'D all over the place. 

I'm better now, though. It is September and soon the thoughts will turn to preparing the ground for winter, planning for next year, buying and burying bulbs. And yes, marking the spot of the current sunflower yield and devising a plan, for electrocuting anyone who touches protecting them, as well as, other yields from the savagery of neighbors? or their kids, or the friends of their kids. 

In the meantime I will enjoy what is left of  the summer, left of the various colors of our my yard.