Hey guys. How’s it going out there?
Here, it’s been a little crazy.
Like – I stopped buying liquor at the Rite Aid.
I didn’t, really – but I’ve received some feedback from avid fans (read: my friend Autumn) that I’m talking too much about my fascination with the drugstoreliquor stuff so I should put a stop to it. (Just last night though: red wine, antibiotics, pharmacy counter. You just can’t beat it.) Really, I need to stop being on antibiotics because then the thrill of the purchase will be gone – because that’s what it is, you guys – it’s not just that you can buy it, it’s that it feels somewhat rebellious to be holding the label that clearly states you must not have alcohol while on the drugs, while holding the alcohol – the eye contact we make, the pharmacist and me – she, wondering if I’m going to drink it, me, wondering if she’s wondering if I’m going to drink it – it’s just too good. Like buying condoms as a teenager, maybe?
Me, writing about it later and thinking I really need to find better outlets for my need for acts of rebellion.
Here’s the real (vacation) week in review:
We took care of ourselves: Anna went to my folks last weekend to kick off vacation, and I stayed here. She shopped and watched and got love from my parents. I ran and slept and read and slept some more. Drank good coffee, wine and had good food, and good love. Stayed inside – because our new space is soooo cozy. I checked my oil, and organized my closet and shopped too long at stores and went to see a movie.
We Western Massed: Anna returned from the land of yes midweek, and we went to Western Massachusetts to stay with friends and ski. I never liked skiing, but did it anyway, being a northern NH girl – but when we walked into the lodge and got in line for rentals, all that little girl stuff came rooting back up and I thought, “I will never, ever ski again.” But then she loved it, which I love so much, so I’m reconsidering my silent promise. Beyond the skiing – Western Massachusetts is just so. lovely. Peaceful and slow and creative and warm and organic and fair trade and solar everything, all set to the backdrop of a river and a train track – and all of that, this time – with the company of people both of us love so much.
With really good coffee.
We said goodbye: When we got home from Western MA they were fine – but this morning Ocean seemed a little lethargic – and that turned into morethanlethargic, and maybe on his last leg – so in the midst of Anna on the floor in tears, I called the emergency vet, and we hauled him in. When the vet saw him in Anna’s hands, she quickly took him and said he needed to put under oxygen. When she came back, leaving him in the care of the techs, we talked through the possibilities of what might have happened – but before we managed too much conversation, the tech came back, opening the door – looking at me, then the doctor, and then me again, and slowly shaking her head. As if she’d been stabbed, Anna dropped to the ground in sobs, while the vet talked to me about the need for an autopsy.
Because she suspected foul play.
She did want to rule out anything that could affect Lemon, though – and while I agreed out loud that it was important to understand what happened, it was the same as when I agreed out loud that giving the birds anesthesia so we could determine if they were male or female was important. As in, not at all agreed. Although she offered cremation, we declined and decided to take Ocean home with us. While I dug in the backyard, Anna went to check on Lemon, who seemed to be in the same state of decline – and soon after, he passed away too.
And my little animal-lover has spent the day torturing herself for losing her birds, all wrapped up on the couch now watching a movie and occasionally talking about the emptiness of the house and how things will never be the same.
And while there have been moments in the midst of the passing – (like when they said ‘oxygen’ and ‘autopsy’) that I had to hide my immediate reaction, I do think we’re learning big stuff today. It gave us an opportunity to talk about how different people cope with losing ones they love, to figure out how we’re going to cope together (or in reality, how I’m going to cope with the amount of coping that needs to happen), what happens and where the birds are now, and to give each other some love.
If you want to take care of yourself, send your children to your parents house (or mine?) and stay home, read and sleep and eat and sleep some more. If you want all the same things with the added bonus of a low-key mountain to ski on surrounded by open, warm local-folks, go to Berkshire East by way of Shelburne Falls. And if you find yourself losing someone you love, come over. We have sage, good comfort food, wine, and lots of love.
RIP, Lemon and Ocean. You were loved.