Saturday, May 16, 2009

Making Music, Mundane Days, Birthdays, and Losses

Yes, the guitar was still there on Monday afternoon. Now it is resident on Kealaolu Avenue. My fingertips are very tender, but the calluses are coming back. The fingers have memory -- for the tunes I favored as lullabies for my children -- those same children who are currently parents of teen-agers. No matter. It's music. It's practice. It works. I can lose myself for as long as my fingertips can tolerate the pain. Hurry, calluses! Now to find a book of favorite hymns in Hawaiian, with music and guitar chords.

The Event of the Week was my mother's 95th birthday, celebration of which extended over 2 days. See my brother's blog for story and photos of Thursday evening. On Friday, the Real Birthday, she did only what she wanted. She had a danish pastry for breakfast, a piece of birthday cake for lunch, and take-out Chinese (her favorite) for dinner. No time spent in the kitchen. No time in the yard, either. Lots of time on genealogy. And you wondered where I caught the bug?!

Otherwise, life is mundane. **Rake leaves. We have two "mechanically emptied" garden waste cans, big guys marked not to be filled with more than 300 lbs of waste. I can easily fill both of them in just a couple of days of leaf raking. The leaves only fit (we're talking quantity here) if they get tamped down regularly in the filling process. Once the cans are filled, all yard word has to stop until the 2-week interval for emptying has passed. I think we really need a 3rd can. **Do laundry. Mostly my father's. Mother doesn't want anyone doing hers. I don't know whether it is stubborn or pride or both. **Wash dishes. Not a task I have adopted with grace, as Ray had no patience with my dishwashing skills. But it needs to be done, and who else will do it? **Chauffeur my mother, mostly to the post office, bank, market, copy center and doctor. I would love to take her to some other activities, but she no longer has the stamina to walk the distances required for craft fairs, rummage sales and general shopping adventures. **Other routine housework, another one of those tasks I never learned to do gracefully. The whole chore is minimized as 2 of the 3 bedrooms in the house are now filled with Her Stuff and should be posted with "Do Not Disturb" signs.

Another co-worker passed away this week. He left too early. Although we did not communicate regularly, I will miss Fred. He was a plumber who loved classical music. He was a cancer survivor and a heart attack survivor. He must have bought his Harley when he turned 60. The last time I saw him was in a pet store in Sonora. In his retirement, he trained a therapy dog and took her to visit patients around Sonora. He was a good, caring friend. We didn't worship in the same style, but Fred's church was just as important to him as mine is to me. Although you never saw it on the job, he was really that kind of a guy. Give thanks for Fred's life. Pray for his widow, children and grandchildren.

Reach out. Hug a friend. Let someone know you care. Don't forget to pray.

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