I am little nervous about going away by myself. More accurately, I’m a little nervous about leaving Steven alone by himself. (New readers, check out my June and July posts “Steven Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest – Parts 1 & 2). I don’t actually think he’ll Baker Act himself again. He’s a fast learner. But I am worried about his ability to survive in Smalltown U.S.A. by himself. Surprisingly, if I was marooned on an island with no other signs of life, I would want Steven there with me. In a situation like that, he is amazing. We’d have food, beverage and shelter before nightfall, and some kind of attention getting device to attract rescue. It’s just ‘normal life’ that trips him up.
Before I embark on the latest Adventure With Steven, I have to tell you that I had a nasty fall getting out of the shower a few weeks ago. Let me digress for a moment to reflect. As we get older we:
- Don’t react a quickly as we did when we were younger
- Don’t bounce like we did when we were little
- Don’t look as good sprawled out naked on a floor as we did in our prime
It was a simple move. I overstepped the bath mat with a wet foot, slid across the tile, like an Olympic skater, knocked over the dogs’ water bowl adding another 2 quarts of water to the floor, and then successfully performed a triple toe loop into a a double salchow transitioning into a Hamill camel before landing in a Cirque du Soleil split. It was an unfortunate accident that I got to witness in my vanity mirror, knowing that I couldn’t stop it and that it was going to hurt like hell when I landed. I thought I was going to need a rush trip to the Emergency Room to remove the bath mat from my uterus!
I made a loud thud and screamed for Steven, but when he slid open the bathroom pocket door and my upper torso melted into the floor of the bedroom, I immediately knew that this, as Seinfeld would say, was a “bad naked.” I landed like I should have been a chalk outline on a police drama. And I was hurting and numb at the same time. He NEVER laughs at me in a dangerous situation…until that day. So I knew I looked hideous. When he tried to help me up I still couldn’t move, so I just had him cover me up with towels so I could hide the hideous. And I made him drag me off the tile on to the bedroom carpet…which left rug burns on my ass. It was ugly…I still cringe with pain and embarrassment when I reflect on the moment.
But now, let’s focus on Steven. After I was dried off, clothed, propped up, iced up and medicated I realized that my afternoon activities were supposed to include some grocery shopping. Unfortunately, I’ve been a little depressed about this ‘job losing’ thing and I’ve been neglecting a lot. Groceries just happened to be one of those things.When I met Steven he was a real bachelor. He had a refrigerator that usually had some kind of cake or pie for a late night snack and some milk to go with it. And French Vanilla Coffee Mate for the mornings…and a light bulb. He ate out every night, every lunch and when he left home in the morning he would stop at the bagel shop for breakfast to go. He has not been in a grocery store since we were married. A lot has changed in 15 years.
So back a the ranch, I gave Steven the debit card and told him to just go to the store, get some milk, Coffee Mate and, this is where I threw him the curve, some soup. We’d have a light dinner that he could just warm up and it would go perfectly with the muscle relaxers he was feeding me.
Publix has been remodeled in the last 15 years. He didn’t know where anything was. Prices have gone up in 15 years. A gallon of milk used to cost $1.00. And Coffee Mate only came in one brand in one flavor…PERIOD. His head almost exploded just trying to find the items. He was sure he was being scammed by the prices and when the checkout girl had him swipe the debit card, I know he must have looked like a deer in headlights. When it asked for the PIN, he was sweating, but took a guess. After 15 years, he did know what I would use. But just when he thought he was safe, the cashier asked him if he wanted cash back. And he freaked out. His question to her, me and everyone within ear shot was, “Why would YOU give ME cash back, if I’m buying something from YOU”?
And now, I’m going to Arizona for 3 days at the end of the month. Steven will be in charge of the house and the dogs when I’m gone. I’m worried but excited. I expect to learn a lot at Cancer Treatment Center of America. I also expect that Steven will provide some entertaining blog posts for us all. Let’s just hope that he’ll try to be a little smarter…than the dogs!