Saturday, February 25, 2006

How fast things can change

Cherie and I went to the park. It was a brisk day and the wind was coming and then going with a random vigor. Sometimes it would blow through the tops of the trees, making them sway back and forth, then it would come down and gust through at ground level, stirring up little vortexes of leaves. It would spin them like a miniature tornado, only to vanish again, letting the leaves fall lifeless back to the ground. I wish I could convey the wonder, the feel of the forest that is full of life despite appearing dead in this winter season. There was so much sound. The wind could be heard coming like a jet aircraft in the distance. I was fascinated to watch the tall leafless trees swaying in opposite directions with the tops moving ten or fifteen feet back and forth.

You could hear them creaking and whining like rusty hinges of a door swinging in the wind. Each tree with its own distinctive voice repeating its cry over and over. And you could hear the sound of trees colliding with each other. On top of all that was the occasional plaintive cry of different birds and the scolding chatter of a squirrel.

We walked, enjoying the feel of the cold wind but glad we had warm coats. I was carrying the camera and had to switch hands regularly to put one in my coat pocket to warm it up. Took lots of pictures as you can see. We walked one of our favorite trails and as it came out of the woods we saw two deer who noticed us at the same time we saw them. Cherie said “Oh look, I didn’t think we would see any deer”. I set the camera for the shot and we quietly kept going towards them. These deer are so used to people that we have sometimes been able to get to fifteen feet from them. Not this time. The two bolted and with that about ten other deer we hadn’t seen also started. I snapped a shot but you really can’t see them clearly in it.

It was exciting regardless. We continued our walk, hoping to see the deer again but they were long gone. It is so good to be in love, not the emotional infatuation kind of love you have as a teenager but the kind where the two of you are one. Life is shared and what one of you enjoys the other does too. Alright, enough mushy stuff.
(Can you see the birdie?)
As we walked I couldn’t help but think how much I will miss this part of the country when we move to Texas. We headed back to the car and Cherie called Nate because he had picked up a washer and drier set from Lowes that he said he would give us a good deal on. I heard Cherie say “What! I didn’t get a message. When did that happen?”. I could tell right away something was wrong. She shut her cell phone and I asked “What’s wrong”. Her mom had just been in a car wreck involving three cars at Detroit Ave and Dorr. Cherie said something about running home but I said “Get in the car. We’re going straight to the wreck site.”

I got us there a bit quicker than I should of. Detroit was closed off and I could see the cars in the intersection. I pulled up to the barricade and we got out. They were just loading a white pick up onto a flatbed and we could see Mom’s white mini van with the front end smashed. Cherie went to talk to the officer taking a report and I took pictures of the three cars involved. Getting back to Cherie we learned they had taken her mom to St. Vincent’s hospital so headed straight there.

We were directed to her room at the emergency room reception area. Going in Cherie’s mom, Patsy, was hooked up to the standard vital signs machine and talking with a police officer. He was reviewing the accident with her and trying to determine what happened. He asked if the light was red when she went through the intersection and she said “I’ll be honest with you, I don’t know. I really can’t remember”. I listened carefully to see what had happened but also to try and make sure she wasn’t going to get cited if it wasn’t her fault.

She was heading East and the pick up she hit was going south. The impact launched the truck into the air and it landed on a Mercedes that was stopped at the light heading north. The driver of the Mercedes said he had come to the light and stopped but he didn’t know if it was still red when the accident happened cause he wasn’t paying attention. When the cop asked Patsy if she was going fast I had to joke “Are you kidding? She pokes around so slow she drives me nuts”. That brought some laughter into the situation. If nothing else I can make people laugh.
We were the first to get there and Patsy was glad to see us to say the least. Fortunately she wasn’t too badly damaged. I talked with the officer a little about the upcoming increase of the police force and my son’s desire to transfer from the sheriffs department to the Toledo Police. We also talked about Iraq and some of the political issues. With that he had to go and we began to visit with mom.
There was much to talk about but she started off with this “God must not have wanted me to go minister at the nursing home” crap. She visits nursing homes as part of her church thing, which is fine, but she spiritualizes everything. I told her not to talk like that cause God isn’t about to cause a wreck just because He didn’t want her to go visit old people. That got her back to a form of reality for the moment but I knew it wouldn’t last.
I did get a chance to talk to her about things that have been on my mind ever since I became a part of the family again. A big part of that is to get her to realize she needs to make some long term plans because of her and Ted’s age and failing health. Also about how her grandson needs learn how to be a man. He has gotten to where he runs the house and basically intimidates everyone including his mother. He’s a good kid and smart as a whip but I think he has gotten so used to getting his way he doesn’t even realize how he treats everyone else. The house is trashed. Not only does he just lays out greasy tools and stuff on the couch with no regard for others but there are windows and doors he has broken and not repaired. It’s pretty much at the level I have seen in the ghetto with crackheads and winos.
There is no discipline or accountability. If Patsy says to not do something she is ignored. I talked to her in a way she could accept or at least understand. I asked her “If you have a child and don’t ever spank it what do you think will happen?” I had to answer for her “That kid will just run wild and will end up in a bad way”. I explained that by allowing things to continue she is going to make it worse. “Nate needs to learn how to act right and you need to help him do that. That is your house. Not his”. Patsy told me that she is helpless and can’t do anything. Plus she said that Ted wouldn’t allow it. “Patsy, Ted has had several strokes and can’t get around. You know he is scared of being alone and helpless so he clings to everything he can” I told her. I also said that at some point she needed to take charge cause Ted’s ability to make good decisions is deteriorating. Patsy also said that Ted is starting to have temper problems that are getting out of hand. I asked if he was getting physical and she said not yet but it was getting close.

I talked to her about getting out of the neighborhood before it was too late because of the increasing gang and drug activity.
It came time to leave so we excused ourselves. Cathy and her son Nate had brought Patsy’s husband Ted up. We talked of lots including us moving to Texas. My pain level got pretty high so I couldn’t stand or sit long. When all was done I took Cherie to a nice restaurant where we had steak because we deserved it. Then we came home. I tried to do something with the pictures I took but the brain was freezing up and I gave up in frustration. It’s a bitch to have once been tested with an IQ in the low end of the genius range and now to get confused doing some simple things. Enough whining. Good night. Oh Yeah. Can’t forget this. Ran into a blog called “SHARE BEAR EXPRESS” That I thought has a good spirit. She directed others to this site so am returning the sign of respect.

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