Monday, December 03, 2007

Unsettled In Longview

When I posted my poem for the Poetry Train Sunday at noon, just as I was leaving on a 300 mile trip to spend two weeks with my Mom, I sincerely expected to be able to start visiting other poems no later than noon today. But it didn't work out that way. By the time I got online here in Longview, WA Sunday night I was just too exhausted. I had spent most of Saturday packing and preparing for the trip. Then Sunday morning Ed and I went out to breakfast with my Mom and sister and her son. It was Mom's treat in honor of our 29th anniversary which was Sunday. As soon as we got back from the resteraunt, I got on my laptop and posted my poem which I'd prepared in draft the night before. Meanwhile Ed and my sister were dragging my bags out to the car. Moments after leaving my comment at Rhian's my laptop was hibernated and slid into its bag along with power cord and I was out the door.

The trip north was one long gab fest between two sisters and their mother. My sister and her son live with my Mom but I've not seen either of them for a year. And the last time I was here at Mom's house was two years ago when I came to say good-bye to my Dad who was loosing his battle with cancer. My Mom and sister have been living in this house without Dad for two years. For me it is as if he is going to walk in the room any second or he is just in the other room. At this moment I am sitting at what used to be his desk in his office. It was disconcerting last night when I first got here. I expected that but hoped it would be easier by tonight.

We stopped in Portland Sunday evening to visit my brother's family for a couple of hours before heading on to Longview. It was after eight by the time we got here and then my sister spent a couple hours unloading the car. By the time she was able to help me figure out how to get my laptop hooked up to their DSL box, it was nearly eleven. I had remained hyped that whole time and still expected that I would spend a couple of hours surfing and commenting on poems, Friday Snippets and TTs. But I didn't even manage to finish reading my email before I lost the hyped state and I crashed hard. I didn't fight it. I slept hard and woke about nine-thirty this morning with a head full of mud and muscles as sore as if I'd been wrestling an octopus all night.

My nephew was on their computer and online. My sister said all I had to do was ask him for a turn but I hated to do so until I was sure that I would be able to make good use of the time. He had been away from all his computer fun for ten days after all. Surely I could wait a few more hours.

I spent the day visiting with Mom and my sister, working on the laundry, having combined mine with theirs. They had been on a ten day road trip and I had let my laundry slide the last two weeks of NaNo so had packed mostly dirty clothes. I also read Bridge to Tarabithia, a novel belonging to my nephew which my sister said I simply had to read while I was here because she was sure I would like it and because my nephew had started to write a sequel to it which she wanted to show me but I had to read the book first. I had started it Sunday night while she was busy unpacking the car but had read no more than twenty pages. I finished it this evening just before my Mom served dinner. It is a good coming of age story. One of my favorite kind of stories since I was pre-teen myself.

I was in the middle of the hankie-honking final scenes when my nephew's cat, Bradley, jumped up in my lap under the book and turned around to push his butt in my face. What is it with cats and butt-presenting anyway. My cat Merlin does it too but not nearly as aggressively as Bradley did. My cat Gremlyn never did, nor her sister Shekhinah. Gremlyn though used to butt her nose against mine and nip it. She would also groom my face and drink my tears.

Anyway. While eating dinner, I got started in the movie that started before we finished eating and sat through it with the rest of the family. I made a token effort to work on this post in draft while watching the movie. I brought my laptop out to the living room on battery power and tried to start writing but I sat without striking a key or touching the mouse pad for so long it went to standby and I never bothered to wake it up again until I brought it back to Dad's office. By the time I was online I was once again too tired to care.

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