Greetings, my old blogger friends. It's been so long since I blogged that it took me a few minutes to figure it out, but I think I have it now. Use it or lose it, I guess.
Anyhoo, after much urging by certain family members and friends, I have decided to share a little of what's shakin' in my life these days.
Several years ago I began keeping a diary. Not your typical diary. My diary is an extensive compilation of what I do each day---not just what I do, but also what I am thinking. This exercise takes up quite a bit of time, I suppose, so I gradually found I had less and less time to blog. I guess you could say the diary won out over the blog, although I do miss the blog and my old friends.
Whatever. But sometimes things happen to me that are just so suited for a blog. The following is such a case:
My mom is in her mid-90s and is living the good life in a retirement community in Georgia. From my home in east Tennessee, I go visit her several days a month. I usually squire her around to various places she needs to go---grocery store, doctor, dentist, cleaners, drug store, beauty shop, you name it. We have a good time.
This retirement community is a sprawling development of hundreds of houses and apartments on hundreds of acres. There are hundreds of retired folks living there. There are activities galore. The food is excellent. The huge staff is courteous and efficient. In short, I cannot think of a better place for my mom.
Last month Cindy and I went there for a visit. After a day of taking mom around to her shopping spots, we relaxed in her apartment. It was decided we would go to "The Pub" (an on-site bar) for some liquid refreshments. The pub was crowded. We discovered that the crowd was unusually large because a show was planned. The entertainment was a resident who spins old 78 records and makes comments about the music. Sort of an octogenarian disc jockey. Music selections were from the 1940s. Not exactly my kind of music but if it makes people happy, fine.
So we go in. find an out-of-the-way table for the three of us, order a drink and sit back and begin to converse. Then we decided to have another pop and we also ordered some dinner.
As we were enjoying the conversation, we were approached by this attractive lady who said, "I would appreciate it if you do not talk during the "show" and also please remember to applaud after each record has been played---the disc jockey has worked very hard on this".
As she haughtily moved to the next table to tell them the same thing (she went to all twenty or so tables in the Pub), I realized that we were experiencing a bully at work and I do not do well with bullies. Never have. So I said in a loud voice, "Lady, we will be talking when we want to."
I could see that she did not like being confronted but she kept going around to all the tables, pissing people off. Most folks don't like to be told what they can do and when they can do it. And besides, did you ever try to tell people in a bar to stop talking after they have just consumed several alcoholic bevs?
Well, the woman goes around the pub and on her way back to her table she made a snide comment to me. OK, I thought, let that be the end of it. But no---after the first record was spun, she made a point of clapping in a wildly exaggerated manner, all the while looking at us. She was harassing us. In our space. My blood was now beginning to get up, and I could not help myself when I firmly said, "Lady, mind your own damn business."
With that, the gentleman sitting next to her began to turn around to appraise the developing situation. As he turned I said to him, "You want in on this?" He returned to his former position. Now I grant you that there is something unseemly about two old geezers gettin' it on in a retirement home bar, but the affair was defused, so all's well that ends well, I suppose. But it was an upsetting few moments for my mom, who just wants to get along.
Fast forward to this month when we visited mom yet again. On our way back to her apartment after errands, we approached the automatic entry gate--- a wrought-iron contraption that opens when a car approaches with the proper ID. There was a car in front of us at the gate. As is customary, when the gate opened, I drove behind the car in front of us to enter the grounds.
As I got just inside the gate, the car in front of me suddenly stopped. I thought to myself, "What the heck is going on?" Here I was---stopped and trapped at the gate entry, and there was now also a car behind me waiting to get in. I was stuck between two cars. I threw up my hands in bewilderment.
A lady emerged from the car in front, yelling at me and approaching our car with glaring eyes. "You are not supposed to follow the car in front of you! YOU ARE SUPPOSED TO WAIT UNTIL THE GATE HAS CLOSED AND THEN ENTER ONE CAR AT A TIME!!"
A spirited verbal exchange began when Cindy blurted out, OH MY GOD!---IT'S THAT PUB LADY!" Now my blood was up again. Here she was, once again entering my world in the most unwelcome of circumstances. And what are the odds that we would be accosted not once, but twice by this nightmare of a person---sort of a latter-day Barney Fife. Here she was, blocking the roadway illegally. As she continued her rant, I told Cindy to call the cops. She heard me say that and she then got back in her car and drove off.
I told Cindy that these things seem to only happen to us. Don't tell me God doesn't have a sense of humor....