~~ She wondered if I could lend her $5 until she saw me next. I replied that I was sorry, but I didn’t even have a single in my wallet. “Oh,” she says, “you’re one of those cash-free people?” I regretfully told her that I was in another category: cashless.
~~ Every time I see a particular person, she tells me her tales of woe. She fell, she broke, she strained, she sprained, she coughed, she sneezed, she ailed, she was surgically repaired. I saw her the other day and again inquired after her health. “Oh, you know,” she semi-whined, “I’ve been better.” I probably gave her a Mona Lisa smile as I wondered when the hell was she better?
~~Dementia-ville had its moments, as usual. The patient griped and grunted, and it smells like a place even seagulls wouldn’t want to linger. Each time my spouse went into the tiny village, the caretaker demanded one thing or another. She insisted he replace the plain bottled spring water he bought because it was “too sweet.” Later, she held up a full carton of soup and brayed, “Get more soup!” He’s a very even-keeled guy, but he just couldn’t stand it anymore. He told her that unless it was an emergency, she should write everything on a list and he’d take care of it once or twice a week. She laughed and then scowled. He asked for confirmation that she understood and would jot down whatever was needed from now on. She shook her head no and then yelled, “Buy paper!”
~~ This same aide approached my son in an agitated manner. “The refrigerator [in Dementia-ville] is broken!” He went to look and determined that the bulb was burnt out. Twice more that day she wailed that the fridge was busted, even though everything was cold and the motor was humming along. “No, no, it’s broken, I can’t see anything!” I guess the window directly next to the appliance, the overhead light, and the flashlight on her ever-handy cellphone did not provide enough illumination. Because she was so beside herself, my husband immediately bought her a new refrigerator lightbulb just to buy himself five minutes of peace.
~~ I needed a break from reality, so I went onto my library’s website and searched for humorous fiction. Discarding all the books about sexy cowboys and seductive billionaires, I came across five e-books I devoured over the past two weeks. I thoroughly enjoyed the “Professor Dr. Moritz-Maria von Igelfeld Series” by Alexander McCall Smith. The titles are:
The professor doctor is a self-absorbed scholar who wrote the definitive tome on, yes, Portuguese irregular verbs. He’s an egotist for sure, but a bumbling, affable, totally transparent status seeker with colleagues that either detest or worship him. He gives lectures, he receives awards, he’s confused with a famous veterinarian and ends up amputating the wrong legs of his rival’s dachshund, and he somehow becomes the president of Columbia (the country). What an absurdly entertaining series!
Next up, another novel with grammatical roots. Love in Lowercase by Francesc Miralles is unlike the previous books, and yet there’s a bit of Professor Dr. Moritz-Maria von Igelfeld in Samuel, another professor painfully aware of his loneliness. You know the butterfly effect? This story has a series of life-changing characters (starting with a stray cat and including a potential time traveler) that all lead Samuel to acknowledge his only true moment of passion — a butterfly kiss when he was six. If nothing is a coincidence in Samuel’s life or mine, then I read this cleverly deep, reason-to-live book for a purpose. Perhaps it was so I could recommend it to you?
~~ Oh, yeah. Reality intrudes:
LET’S GO METS!