It was lunch. I was standing over my kitchen counter eating a bowl of corn flakes when the phone rang.
"Will you take me to Wal-Mart?" my mother asked. "I don't think I can drive today."
"Sure," I said apprehensively with my mouth still full of and chewing on milk and corn flakes. "I'll pick you up in a minute. I've already had a shower and am dressed."
As we were driving down, I asked mom what we needed.
"Coconut for ambrosia," she replied. "Your father is making it this afternoon for Christmas."
I don't get dad sometimes. Here, lately, he has been saying my mother needs to slow down. That she is on a high and spending lots of money. On the other hand, he sends her on these Don Quixote like goose chases and she is shaky mentally. She sure sounded shaky as we drove and talked - like she was manic and out of breath.
Well, we found the shredded frozen coconut. Mom will just walk up to any old soul and ask, "Do you work here?" It drives my social anxieties crazy and I will hang my head low and slowly pace trying to calm down. Aren't we just the pair? Mom and I?
Wal-Mart was gang busters. I thought we would never get out of there. "I am never gonna get home," I thought as we stood in line to check out. "I am going to be dust and bones before all this is said and done."
Well, I made it home. As I drove into mom and dad's driveway, I sighed and lit a cigarette.
"You okay?" mom asked. "I almost had an anxiety attack!"
"Me too," I replied. "Me too."
Mom thanked me and it was so good to come home to Maggie. She was so glad to see me and made sure I was properly sniffed to see where I've been. I wonder if some people thrive in such busy environs - the happy, social, maniacal people that so mystify me. "Good to be home after all that," I thought again as I melted into the couch, turned on the weather channel, and lit another soothing smoke. I was home....