Well…things did get a little rough on Sunday as I wandered around my place trying to figure out what to do with myself to occupy the long hours before Silas would be home again. But I managed to make it through by…well, you know, I stumbled around in my bathrobe and talked to myself and I read the same chapter of my current book over and over until I felt comfortable enough to actually put it down. I did, however, manage to stay home and not spend any money on newspapers or food, which is nice. Especially since it seems that I’m about to become the victim of a sinister and lascivious extortion plot. But that’s a story that we may tell later. Or not. The best part is that my normally overweening thirst for whiskey was held at bay even in spite of recent legal developments here in our bucolic paradise that now allow liquor sales on the Sabbath.
But the upside is, I picked the Boy up yesterday and we built another fort and played with his new toy telephone. I showed him how to pull it along by the string so it would make noise and the googly eyes would wiggle and then I showed him how to work the rotary dial so the little bell would ring. It dawned on me then that he has never seen anything like this in actual use and he’ll probably never associate it with a telephone. All he knows are cell phones. Pity that. But he had a good time once he got the hang of sticking his little fingers in the holes and twisting the dial.
After he got bored with the phone we wrestled around and tickled and he crawled in and out of his little fort and growled at me. It was fun all the way around.
I also realized that all of my fears about, and concerns with, the outside world just vanish when we’re playing like that. It’s just the two of us and nothing seems to matter. I can really use that kind of therapy right about now. We crawled around and examined every inch of the floor and then he stood at the dish washer and banged on the door for a while. (Maybe I should’ve let him take a crack at the dishes. You never know, right?)
He ate chicken for the first time and he seemed to like it okay. He laughed pretty hard when I made clucking sounds at him to show him how good it was. (I bet he thinks I’m the silliest person who ever lived…and maybe I am…but I don’t care as long as he knows who I am and that I love him.) He finally went down for the count after he had a bottle and I carried him to bed about 9:50. I settled in for a little peace and quiet.
But it didn’t last long…my phone started ringing. (I wish that my phone made funny noises, had googly eyes and would make bells ring when I turned the rotary dial. No such luck.) I didn’t answer it the first time but it kept up the rattle. I answered the next call which was from my nephew to let me know that the term paper I had written for him received an A when he turned it in. Sure, it’s dishonest I know, but it’s still groovy to know that I can score that highly on college level work after all this time. Not to mention that the subject matter of the paper in question was not my forte. He was very happy with the result and I felt a lot less guilty about taking money from him for it. I really thought it would bomb.
The phone rang a few more times but I was very busy drifting in and out of a hazy doze that had me pinned to the couch (along with other assorted ghosts) and decided that, if it was really important, they’d come and get me.
Well, (NAME DELETED) did just that. I hadn’t seen him in a while but he banged on my door and wanted me to head out to open mic night so we could make some trouble and down a few drinks. I told him I couldn’t make it…I had the Boy. He asked where she was and I had to lay the whole trip on him.
“You idiots,” he said. “It’s obvious to the whole world that two freaks like you guys should lock yourselves away and realize that you must belong together because nobody else can stand you.”
“It’s not that simple,” I told him. “Things have changed.”
He still tried to get me to go along, insisting that we could just let the boy sleep in the car. I just shook my head and pushed him out the door. He’d never get it. He didn’t have a son and he didn’t understand. It was typical.
I settled back on the couch and thought about all those other freaks out at the bars on a Monday night and all the Bad Advice they dole out like they’ve really got the wisdom to talk to anybody about Life. I sure don’t; but I know enough to know that you never, ever, screw around when somebody’s kids are involved and especially if you’re just some loser hanging around in a bar. I know…I’ve been there.
About two hours later the boy woke up fussing and I had to fetch him a bottle.
I smiled at the irony as I realized that, not so long ago, I would have been fussing for my own bottle at about the same time.