My accidental on-purpose sucker fish. His name is Bob. Skeletor, the skeleton fish, approves from behind the bubbles. I think.
Did I tell you that my big sucker fish died about a month ago? I scrunched my nose as I used a forklift to get him out of the tank. Okay, slight exaggeration but as heavy as he was in the net, it felt like a forklift might have been a better option. Once I got him out, I figured I’d let the tank get ookey and the rest of them would die off, at which point I would take the tank down.
I found myself using the razor blade thing the other day to get some of the algae off the glass, at which point I knew I wasn’t going to watch the demise of Skeletor, the skeleton fish (okay, proper name: glass fish), and the quadruplets (I don’t know what they are but there are four of them and they are basically identical). In my many travels today, one stop was at the Pet Emporium (interesting name for a shop that might be about two and half times the size of my house at the largest estimate) to get a new sucker fish. I decided on a small one and as soon as the gentleman put him in the bag, I knew his name was Bob.
He is out of the plastic bag and on the bottom of the tank right now. The Emporium has a 14-day death policy: if the creature dies within 14 days, bring it and the receipt back to the store for a one-time replacement.
We all only die once, right?
I made at least 17 almost-trips out and back today.
My prayers for the food ministry have been answered: my friends are still at the park. They just dash in quickly and dash out, hoping not to be spotted by the police. Miss Viv was there, as were Robin, her husband, and their pit bull, who fell down on my feet and stayed there upside down while I rubbed her belly. I didn’t see Gorta but I saw her human mom and dad, just didn’t get a chance to ask after the now not-so-small pit bull. I didn’t see Miss Pinky and wonder where she’s gone. A woman who comes regularly and who also goes to the same church that I do told me that her and her husband were now separated. She asked for prayer. She hugged me about three times before she and her stepson left. I prayed while I drove away. The son of my friends who run the food ministry was home from his rotation (he’s a podiatrist in training … still in residency) this week, so I got to see him as well.
I left there and stopped to get a car wash and pick up some money; I was planning to also stop to pick up the prescription the pharmacy didn’t have yesterday, but knew there was a store I needed to go back into downtown for that didn’t open until 10. I went there and then to the Emporium, where I got Bob. Back at the pharmacy, they still didn’t have what I needed. The tech called the next closest one and they had it. I ran home, dropped off something at my neighbor-friend’s house, and went back into town (this was trip #3).
Random thoughts as I drove:
I passed an Amtrak and decided I’d like to ride it up and down the coast.
I realized that I worried more about my dogs than my house and other belongings if, while I was out, something happened to me.
I considered taking a nap later today.
I wondered how much work I would do on a weekend that I decided I wouldn’t do any.
There were more, but I’ve lost track of them now.
In my mind’s eye, I could see my uncle’s wife. When I was about 12, early on in their relationship, she’d called me eccentric.
Yeah, guess I am.
I am unlike anyone else in my family, other than by looks. I am a good mix of my dad straight away and my Mom-mom (my mom’s mother) as I get older. In personality, my son has some of my traits. Or quirks. Take your pick. But beyond that, I don’t think many of them know what to make of me.
This morning’s excitement before I left for my volunteer was that I found the hose splitter. I had the plumber here to fix a leak in my shower yesterday and for some reason when he turned my water off, he unhooked my hose out front. That gave me the bright idea to put the splitter joint in before reattaching the hose. It took at least four trips into the garage and around the house, nosing in different drawers and across shelves to remember where I’d seen it last. However, I found it and it worked wonderfully.
No one else in the family would have been interested, much less excited by that. It made my morning.
My car smelled like three different kinds of fermented vegetables until about an hour ago; my friend gave me a bag of multiple goodies before we left the park — some hot curry, cooked rice, and three small but different types of kimchi. I made buffalo chicken last night so I have more than enough food to not cook for several days.
I’ll get to see my son tomorrow; it’s been since he was in hospital in the spring that I saw him last. It was late winter/early spring the last time I took him out for lunch. He’s making his own way in the world, sort of. So am I.
The word sounds about right for both of us.
Most people don’t believe the story of our lives when I tell it.
I remind them that these are the early chapters and to stay tuned, because more is coming.
My son’s friend, the one who lives in the group home, calls me at least twice a week. We talk about things that she should have talked to her mom about when she was like 14 or 15. She’s 27 now, will be 28 in December. She said it was sad that I lived by myself, that Christopher had died. She remembers talking to him a long time ago. The fact that I have dogs, a cat, and fish does not make it any less sad for her that I live alone. She can’t imagine it. Being alone scares her.
I have never lived in the same confined space with more than a total of five people: when Christopher’s dad was alive, it was him, Christopher, our two children, and me. I am an only child and the first time I had to share a room with someone (at summer camp — oh, was that a nightmare in real life!) I was mortified.
It took me I don’t know how many days to actually go to sleep when I had to share a room at university with one other young woman. Again, mortified.
It took me more days to go to sleep when I first lived with the first husband. Probably the smartest I was during that time …
I stream Chillhop music most days, randomly chair-dancing when a particular favorite tune comes on. The dogs enjoy it, I think — both the Chillhop and the chair dancing.
I did those things when Christopher was here, so I can’t stop now. I guess he was eccentric, too.
My Sputnik lays next to her bowl and picks her food out, piece by piece. She puts it on the floor between her front paws and eats it a little at time.
Anyone would probably have to be to share this little sanctuary. I could tell you stories about Woola, who is part fruit bat and PJ the cat, who is neurotic and lives in the garage.
And it’s just fine, because we all have our own brand of weird.