Home At Last: At 3 P.M. yesterday our daughter called, joyful the power was on in her Ridgefield apartment so the gal was going home. Whew! Now that was timely, as our son had reached me moments earlier from our house to say our generator was “fried.” Darn, the guys were right, keeping it on all night to accommodate friends’ schedules broke this 25-year-old warhorse of blizzards, hurricanes and ice storms. Now we had to turn to others for charity; cup of water please, only it takes buckets just to flush a toilet.
The Apartment: Shortly after our daughter’s call the moms and staff gathered in the red couch living room to plan out the completion of the apartment decor: area rug, curtains, runner, coffee table, tiny kitchen table with 2 stools and some repairs. I did feel some worry when our residential coordinator who deals with the landlord said there had been tension about a cabinet door that had come off. It was shoddily put on, without screws, just thin staples, so of course it lasted but a moment. Her response was “Are your people destroying my apartment?” I found the remark so unfair as the absolute opposite is the case, and insulted for the girls. As the lease is just for a year, they could be booted out or leave. The young ladies are on two affordable housing lists in Ridgefield, and though these places are not as charming looking or convenient, they may be the next stop in adult independent living.
Starry, Starry Stench: Home to no water, relieved son is in NYC and daughter empowered in Ridgefield, we bedded early. At 1 A.M. Waggy started barking and panting at the window. Must be a deer, let her run at it. Door opens, Wags lunges down the steps (lunge is a generous term for the movement of a canine with 3 legs) and two minutes later I see her whirling about and flinging herself face first into the evergreen shrubs by the newly painted front door. Then I smelled it. Skunked right in her face. For this one I had to wake the hubby. With nary an operative water supply in sight we grabbed the remnants of a late June birthday party of club soda and Bloody Mary mix and poured it over the poor pooch’s face. Then we shuffled the Tabasco-peppered pup through the garage door to purdah in the tile floor basement below, where she remains until further accommodation can be made. We’re thinking white vinegar and water; my sister suggests a soupçon of milk to the mix.
Female Visit: Meanwhile our daughter had one of those “darn women things” that occur annually and her staff were bringing her to the appointment today. I was torn between attending, bringing her myself or just letting her go as the “independent adult” until, while perched on the red couch together yesterday, she asked if I were coming to the appointment. “Do you want me to?” “I don’t care.” So of course I go today at 1:30 in the midst of a stinky, skunky, waterless Wednesday workday only to be snubbed by her when I get there. Not allowed in the examination room, bumped. Did I pick up the wrong message here? Or is this just the dance of adolescence I describe to my patients about their adolescent daughters who one minute curl up on the couch and cuddle and the next treat you as either their handmaiden or some embarrassing relative from the old country.
Complicated Twenty-Four Hours: But at least the paint job which started over a month ago is done . Our entire home has an exterior resembling poured cream over a three story Wedding cake with a yummy slate colored candy roof and a front door of a licorice-like graphite gray. And if you breathe too deeply, a hint of Eau de Skunk over V8 on the rocks.
© Jill Edelman, M.S.W., L.C.S.W. 2011