windinthemaples: A lane of red maple trees in riotous fall color. (ocean heart)
I didn't get my brother's phone calls, I was sick and had turned my phone to silent. Yesterday afternoon, though, I got an email from Daniel that I needed to call my brother. I called him and he said, "Oh, hey Rachel. How are you doing?" and I said, "I'm alright, sick though. Is something wrong?" and he said, "Yes, something is wrong. Dad passed away."

As I understand it, staff at the assisted living facility he's at found him yesterday morning, having died in his bed. The coroner expects it is a cardiac issue, and given my father's medical history that is very likely. He was 69 years old.

My father weathered (and at times miraculously survived) a series of health crises. He has been code blue and resuscitated, on ventilators and then revived. We have sat at his hospital bed, in vigil, more than once and in more than one city. It is just unbelievable that he is gone, truly and irrevocably gone, and we didn't even get a phone call as warning. It feels like there has been a mistake. I didn't know that our last phone call was going to be our last.

He was really down last week. He only picked up my phone call because I left a rambling message that began with "Dad, are you there? If you're there, pick up! Pick up, pick up, pick up! Well, I'll tell you about me..." He hadn't seen much of my brother and was isolating himself in his room. He was having all his meals delivered so he didn't have to get out of bed or socialize with anyone. I bullied him, albeit good-naturedly, to take a shower, put on fresh clothes, and to take his next meal in the cafeteria with the rest of the residents of the assisted care facility. He said something about how he had nothing in common with those old people, those infirm and forgetful. I lashed back, in disbelief at his snobbery, saying he had everything in common with those people--he also had trouble moving around, needed care, was in poor health. (It turns out they all outlived him.) He said he had to go to the bathroom and he'd talk to me later. He was cagey, never promised to get out of bed, and I said, "Okay, well call me back if you want to talk."

Those were the last words I ever spoke to my Dad. His spirits did improve, though, and he went to dinner at my brother's mother-in-law's house on Saturday and then ran errands with my brother on Sunday. Things were fine, we never expected to lose him this week, no matter how fragile we knew his health to be.

I wish I'd been kinder, in my words and in my thoughts. I wish I'd known the last time we talked was going to be the last time. I wish he'd gotten to see our new home, the one we'd be staying in here in Florida. I wish he'd been able to go to Disney World with us, to experience it with his grandchildren after so many adventures there with his children. I wish his life had been better and more fulfilling. It is tragic that he died after decades of waiting for renewed health in order to live. The tragedy wasn't his death, as that was something he yearned for as a perfect respite from suffering, but in the waste of his life and his potential all the years before. What a shame, what a shame, what a shame how much mental illness stole from us all.

I was digging through boxes of old photographs, looking for something appropriate for the obituary or the visitation. A letter from my father, written on the back of a piece of church bulletin dated July 15, 2002, fell out onto the table and was overlooked until I'd repacked the rest of the box. His scrawled handwriting leaps off the page. It wasn't one of his cruel letters, but one of his kind. It says, in part,

"You are very special and a wonderful daughter--I am proud of you! If you get a little discouraged, just get healthy and think of Michener's quote on character!!!!"

(Which, with a little Googling, I believe is this quote from my birth year--"Character consists of what you do on the third and fourth times.")

He went on to say, "(never give up, you have great genes) (you have Viking and Scottish Highlander blood--great potential) (not to mention Irish grit and determination) (BRAINS +)".

He wrote about Vietnam after that before closing:
"LOVE,
FOREVER,
DAD."

It was kind of an extraordinary find yesterday, a letter I never remember receiving saying everything you'd want a Dad, forever gone, to have said.

He was so sick, so, so sick, and yet I know that he loved me. He really did.

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~*~
I had no idea how devastating his loss would be. I couldn't have imagined that I'd be surprised when he died, that it'd be so sudden, so unannounced, so final.

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windinthemaples: A lane of red maple trees in riotous fall color. (ocean heart)
On September 30th, [livejournal.com profile] mermaiden and [livejournal.com profile] willow_cabin had their marriage formally and legally recognized by the state of New York. I'd missed out on their first wedding with Graeme as a newborn, so it was an honor and a joy and an unexpected second-chance that I was not only able to witness this (amazingly beautiful and sparkle-riffic) ceremony but to also participate as a bridemaid. Graeme, their goddess-son was asked to be the ring bearer. Summing the experience of this past week in a post is nearly impossible!

I realized on the plane ride home that watching Jenn and Sarah marry is the happiest day of my life. At my wedding, though I was a being of lightness and joy and sheer glowing and giddy euphoria, it still couldn't match how I felt when the minister pronounced, by the power invested in him by the great state of New York, that my dear and beloved friends were legally wife and wife. My wedding was a given. When I met Daniel, that first date, I knew I would marry him. No outside obstacle could keep the two of us apart once we'd found each other in the world. There's a calm serenity and certainty in that. With Jenn and Sarah, there were no such guarantees. They grew up in a country where same-sex marriages did not exist and even today, what they were granted is possible in only six states. It feels like a miracle, Love walking in the world, and a weight whose strain I didn't appreciate is gone from my shoulders. I do not have to worry about them anymore. What my friends, my dear family, that beloved beloved pair has now cannot be levered apart from the outside. They can spend the rest of their lives dreaming what to do together instead of daring to hope they can even be together. I'm flying with joy for them. Their wait for justice and acknowledgment is over.

I have very few photos from the festivities. Some gorgeous photos have been coming out from Laura Vasilion ([livejournal.com profile] twelvepetals) of Vasilion Photography who was the official photographer of the wedding. For example, she took this one!

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~*~

That said, onto the details of the week, the ceremony and more photos behind the cut! )

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Sarah and Jenn, I wish the two of you a long lifetime of love and shared dreams and bountiful blessings and endless possibilities together. <3 <3 <3
windinthemaples: (kind)
For the past two years (2009 and 2008), I've spent time looking back over my journal, my photographs, and my calendar to remember just what it was the past year delivered into my life. It is a recap and an act of acknowledgment and gratitude. This year I have just as many things to be thankful for. Thank you, 2010, for delivering all of these moments of unexpected clarity, unconditional love, challenge and perfectly imperfect existence to me and allowing me to spend this year with those who enrich my life so thoroughly. But seriously, 2010, you kicked my butt and raked me over the coals and while I wouldn't want to trade these experiences, I'd rather not repeat them. Okay? :)

January

January was such a difficult month. We'd driven down, over the Christmas break, to South Florida to begin our experiment in snowbirding for the winter. I got food poisoning on the drive down and we were forced to cancel a trip to Disney World. Once ensconced at my mom's vacant condo, that food poisoning morphed into the worst illness I've ever experienced. I was sick for weeks and nothing seemed to shake it. We realized, a bit too late, that Daniel realistically had to travel 5 days a week to keep up with work demands, so we got to spend very little time with him. My aunt and cousin, who became our new neighbors, never wanted to visit (especially with me being mysteriously ill), so I was profoundly alone. And sick.

A few weeks in, I woke up with the worst back/ovary pain of my life. I was pretty sure I was dying. Thankfully, that was Daniel's night of the week to be with us and he got me to the emergency room where I was diagnosed with a severe urinary tract infection and a kidney stone about the size of a marble. Clearing up the UTI eliminated my pain and I didn't have the support I needed to go about surgery for my kidney stone, so I stepped firmly into 'necessary denial' and went about my life as best I could. I hoped maybe the stone would magically disintegrate or lie dormant for years. (It didn't.)

There were pluses to a month in Florida. Graeme flourished under the warm sun and wide horizons of a suburban, outdoor existence. We played at the beach and the park. He rode his tricycle along the palm-lined sidewalks. We went to visit the animals recuperating at the Busch Wildlife Sanctuary and the Loggerhead Marinelife Center. We taught him how to play tee ball in the yard (our first experience with a yard!) and he got a baby bed and slept alone for the first time. Everything about him glowed. His vocabulary began to accelerate dramatically. He was deeply happy.

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I tried, in vain, to get myself untangled from a mess with PayPal over my inadvertent use of a "Donate" button to raise money to buy pajamas for The Pajama Program. It never worked. I couldn't escape the red tape but in the process my efforts to collect and donate 500 warm pajamas was derailed--deflated. It was an emotional defeat I just didn't get over easily.

A Month-by-Month Recap with Photos Under the Cut )

What in the world will 2011 hold?

I can't imagine.
windinthemaples: A lane of red maple trees in riotous fall color. (Default)
On Sunday, we spent our morning dodging raindrops at the Palm Beach Gardens Green Market, where we bought some homemade donuts and guacamole. In the afternoon, while Graeme napped and I visited the craft store (where I fell off the not-buying-wagon to the tune of $30), Sequoia and her Grandma went to see Date Night at the local theaters. I guess that was embarrassing, despite the PG-13 rating, because of the sexual content and jokes and the, well, sitting next to your grandma part. Both were mortified at the end of the show. We drove down to Darbster for a late lunch and then drove home so that Daniel and I could go out to the movies while the other two girls stayed home watching Graeme. Well, first we had to earn our time off by dealing with some bathtub + stomach upset disasters. And just when the bathtub was disinfected and refilled, it happened again! Oh, thankfully Daniel was there to deal with the grossest of the jobs. ;) So once we boiled ourselves, we went out to the theaters and, in a show of solidarity and to be in on the joke, went to see Date Night, too. It was a lovely evening out solo. :)

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Today, things are winding down. My Mother-in-Law flew home this morning and we dropped Daniel off at the airport this afternoon. Sequoia will be here a couple more days and then it'll be back to my empty nest. :) It has been a very busy, very nice week. :)
windinthemaples: A lane of red maple trees in riotous fall color. (Default)
Saturday, Daniel took the day off making us a very happy party of five. We drove to Blowing Rocks Preserve for the morning and then had lunch at Jupiter's Food Shack for a crazy-fabulous lunch. In the afternoon, we went to Jonathan Dickinson State Park and took a guided boat ride up the Loxahatchee River to Trapper Nelson's. It was overcast and breezy, perfect really, and we got some close-up views of alligators, turtles, and ospreys in the nest with their young. Graeme remained pretty cool about the whole inactive tour thing, getting a little wiggly but nothing bad for the two hours. After the ride, we hiked up the boardwalk through the scrub to Hobe Mountain, the highest point in South Florida--83 feet, I think. Worthy of lots of jokes, but a great view, too. :)

After the state park, we drove up to Chuck E. Cheese so that Sequoia and Graeme could play together. The place was a mad-house, so maybe not the best plan. They still had fun, though, which is kinda a tall order with both a toddler and a teenager together. :)

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Um. Don't tip over, people. That's a big alligator.
windinthemaples: A lane of red maple trees in riotous fall color. (Default)
Friday, after a trip to the library for storytime and the park, Sequoia and Grandma conspired to go shopping for sundresses. We drove down to Wellington Green, the nearest Forever 21 store, and wandered around for awhile. Given my no-buying thing, it was painful. :D I very nearly bought an $80 pair of jeans, went so far as trying them on, before my will power kicked back in. It made for a grumpy day. :) Sequoia did manage to find a cute dress and a necklace to go with it. I bought nothing but lunch. Success!

So what else? Somehow, shopping (or fighting to not-shop) sucked the whole day away. That night, we pulled out my thrifted copy of the Survivor boardgame. My husband and niece voted me off the island. ;) I will never forget it! :D

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Graeme's pretending to be his father at the mall.
windinthemaples: A lane of red maple trees in riotous fall color. (Default)
Thursday morning, Sequoia and I walked Graeme up to the closest community park for an hour or two. We got home in time to load into the car and drive to pick up Daniel's mother (Sequoia's grandmother) at the airport. Graeme was asleep in the car until we got home with her and then very put out to be home and not somewhere else more entertaining. We drove around kinda aimlessly and then stopped for snacks at Panera Bread.

In the afternoon, we drove to Juno Beach and watched a bunch of kiteboarders taking advantage of the good winds. I collected more holey shells for my Fairie Festival costume. :) That night, Daniel took his mom out for dinner so that Sequoia and I could shamelessly fangirl over Vampire Diaries in peace. ;)

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A couple more photos here... )
windinthemaples: A lane of red maple trees in riotous fall color. (ocean mom)
We woke up late, broke fasts with pizza and breadstick leftovers, and loaded into the car for a trip to the Grassy Waters Preserve. It seems outrageous that just a mile or so from our house is twenty square miles of (relatively) untouched wetlands, alligators and all. Graeme was sad to see that the "park" I'd promised him had no playground equipment. I think he thought it a betrayal. He eventually perked up when I dug around in my backpack for his toddler camera and spent the next hour or more running ahead of us on the boardwalk and taking photos of insects and ferns and his blue velcro sneakers.

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It was hot and sunny and beautiful. We saw lizards and swimming snakes, giant fuzzy bees and papery wasp nests, water-striding cypress trees, tiny silver fish and even a silently stalking alligator. We watched in shock as a group, led by an official guide, stepped off the boardwalk in their shiny white tennis shoes, walking through the swamp with only some nervous giggles and walking sticks, knee deep in the murky muck and tannin-brown water.

It was so beautiful and so alien.

At a certain point, we were too overheated to enjoy it anymore. We got back into the car, bought sandwiches at Jimmy John's, and then picked up Daniel at the airport. Here at home, Daniel took the kids swimming at our pool while I talked to Rhiannon on the phone and nursed my sunburns in the cool of our darkened bedroom. We had gnocchi and salad for dinner and have been playing games all evening long. Such fun! :)

More Grassy Waters Photos... )
windinthemaples: A lane of red maple trees in riotous fall color. (Default)
Graeme hadn't been able to go to sleep until 12:30, so it was a real shock to the system when my alarm beeped me awake at 4:45am. I threw on clothes and then bundled a still-sleeping Graeme into the car. The roads were mostly deserted, straight, monotonous down to Miami and I was feeling so tired. It was miserable, really, trying to stay awake. We got to the airport alright and picked up Sequoia, whose red eye flight from Seattle had allowed her about as much sleep as I got. Both of us were feeling sick and puke-y and tired on the drive back where, again, I felt like a zombie and had to do stupid things like pinch myself and tap my fingers on the steering wheel to make sure my attention didn't wander to asleep-with-eyes-open status.

Back at home, Graeme zoned out in front of the television while both Sequoia and I beelined it back to bed. I'd sleep for twenty minutes before Graeme needed some attention or food or a channel change and then I'd be back to sleep for another twenty minute stretch. I just couldn't get up! That went on for about three hours of near-complete parental inattention. Sequoia woke up around the same time and the two of us kinda sat and drooled in a stupor, watching Spongebob Squarepants and saying every ten or fifteen minutes of silence--"We should go to the beach today." "Yeah."

We finally got ready and out the door around 1pm. A couple minutes from the beach, Graeme fell asleep in the car and we were obligated to rearrange our plans a bit. Sequoia ran into the grocery store to get us some chips and bagels and we sat in the car for about an hour, talking and snacking. Once Graeme woke up, we grabbed our towels and toy shovels and walked down to Juno Beach.

The sun was so bright, the sky cloudless, and the beach was hot! It was probably in the mid-80s, reminding me that summertime here will be into the high nineties and all humidity. A lot of man-o-wars in the water and on the shore, making the idea of swimming a little less appealing. We were on a mission, collecting shells with natural holes in them for my Fairie Festival costume plans and really had a great time. (Graeme later said it was his favorite time of the day--being at the beach with Sequoia (which he seems to say as, "Keera")).

After the beach and some time at the adjacent playground, we cooled off in town at Gelato Grotto (Yum!) and then visited another playground in the long hours of sunset before going home to play games (we found an electronic Deal or No Deal game of my Mom's, Sequoia pulled out her card tricks, we played School with Graeme who was excited to wear one of my backpacks around the house) and we ordered pizza in and talked about our mutual love of Vampire Diaries.

Lovely day, overall, despite our total out-of-it-space-cadet fatigue. :) Today, Daniel flies in and joins our party! :D

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Mango and Forest Berry gelato!
windinthemaples: A lane of red maple trees in riotous fall color. (Default)
Friday, the day of my mom's wedding, Graeme woke up with the hot, paper-dry skin of the fevered. He complained of bees in his nose and a sore throat, too, alternating the day between extreme lethargy and sudden torrents of tears. Daniel and I both felt run-down from our busy past couple of months. In Chicago, Daniel was supervising the remodeling of the condo and had spent three days operating on little sleep so he could box and haul away most of our worldly possessions before the floor guys started ripping up and replacing the wood floors. Here in Florida, I hadn't packed for the cruise, had nothing really appropriate to wear to my mom's wedding, and was living in a crazy-mess of a house. We talked on the phone, commiserating with each other, and decided to cancel our participation in my aunt's birthday cruise. It lifted a huge burden off of us. We'll get about 90% of the cruise cost refunded to our credit cards, won't have to drag a sick baby onto a boat in the middle of nowhere, and have gained seven precious days at home together without work or obligation. It has been divine ever since making that decision!

Around five pm, I bundled Graeme up into multiple fleecy layers and strollered to the neighborhood gazebo where my mom was getting married to her long-time boyfriend, Bob. She sprang the wedding idea on us last minute and I was pretty resentful of how she turned my aunt's birthday celebration into her own conveniently pre-paid honeymoon. Still, there was no doubting how supremely happy she was in that late afternoon light. About twenty-five of us witnessed them exchange some moving, personal vows (including one by Bob to act as her "knight in shining armor") and within a few minutes, they were married. We caravanned over to my aunt's patio which had been transformed with only a couple week's notice into this gorgeous wedding reception, complete with orchids and palm fronds and warm pools of candlelight. My mom was sparkling with happiness. For better or for worse, she's embraced this course of her life and looking around at the other guests, most of whom I'd never met, I could see how much my mom's life has diverged from my own. She is her own person and totally unaccountable to me. She has found ways to reinvent what her life is all about and has a whole circle of friends and new family that help her to do that. It was bittersweet but, with Graeme clinging and Daniel flying in later that night, mostly just sweet.

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The reception ended early so everyone could finish getting ready for the cruise departure the next morning. I drove over to the airport and picked up Daniel. Such a relief to know, at least this week, he won't be flying away in a day or two and he won't be closeted in his office working until 2am. No, I get seven days with my husband! :)

Saturday, Graeme was snuffly and a bit under-the-weather, but he still announced, "Today, we are going to the beach!". How could I say no to that?! The three of us packed all our beach towels and toys and bundled up for the breezes. My brother Matthew, who'd come into town for the wedding and wasn't able to afford the cruise, called and we made plans to meet in Jupiter at the beach. He brought his wife and our two nephews, Gideon and Elliott (who is Graeme's age). It was such fun to see everyone playing in the sand and the surf. After the beach, we visited an adjacent playground and then drove over together to get lunch at Pollo Tropical, this Cuban fast-food place we love here in South Florida.

After lunch, we split from Matthew's family. I got the sheer luxury of a trip to Goodwill and an after-lunch nap (!!) while Daniel and Graeme played at our park. That night, we played with animals, picked up groceries at Greenwise, gave Graeme a bath and made pasta and steamed broccoli. Mmm. :) It was a perfect family night.

Sunday, I finally admitted defeat. Graeme's homemade whoops!mullet had to be repaired professionally. We drove to a children's hair salon at the Wellington Mall and watched Graeme go from stubborn terror ("I'm scared of the barber! I don't want a hair cut! I don't want my hairs cut!") to proud delight as he announced to anyone who would listen ("Hi, I'm Graeme. I got my hair cut today! I have a new hair cut!").

I'd gotten a completely unexpected refund in the mail for $80 and immediately vowed to apply it towards my Pajama Program collection. I darted around the mall for about an hour and added six big kids sized pajama sets to my collection with the funds.

Oh! Oh! So, I didn't mention the other surprises at the wedding reception. My brother and sister-in-law, as a gift for our 5th Anniversary, gathered 28 pajamas to donate in our honor. My mother even took time from her festivities to deliver five fuzzy fleece sets. That, with my weekend's purchases, brings me to a total of 237 pajamas to donate. How outrageously generous and good-hearted are my friends and family! <3 :)

After shopping, we stopped at Darbster for another amazing, nommy vegan meal. (Hello, tempura-battered cauliflower in sweet chili sauce!)

More photos here... )
windinthemaples: A lane of red maple trees in riotous fall color. (Default)
* Did I ever mention my mom was in Wyoming? Well, she lost her job as a hospital administrator months ago. In all that time, with the help of headhunters and many far-flung interviews, she was offered the job in the middle of nowhere, Wyoming. (Quite a move from south Florida.) Her boyfriend hooked her unreliable car up to a car trailer and drove her up there, with her clothes, a television, and a microwave, a couple weeks ago. The place she'd planned to stay, fully furnished, was more of a druggie crash pad complete with guys hanging out on the stairs all hours of the day and night. So she called some people who had townhouses for sale in the area and found one willing to rent to her month-to-month. No furniture, no money, so she's been kinda making do. On top of that, she's not entirely sure she'll get the job (she has congestive heart failure) or how long she'll keep it for (90 day probation), plus she can't sell her condo in Florida because of the crap economy. I'm rambling and I'm not even getting anywhere! I should have been telling this story little by little. :D Anyways, she's got no money and currently only the hope of a job while she's paying to maintain two homes. She showed up for work on Monday and because her Wyoming R.N. license hasn't arrived in the mail yet, they told her she had to go home. (Um. Yes, she's an R.N. but she's been hired as an administrator. She could just as easily have a business degree but because she's a nurse and her nursing license hasn't been transferred from Florida yet, they're sending her home unpaid. And the Wyoming nursing board is backed up with paperwork because of all the recent graduates flooding their desks. So holy crap. Does she have a job or not? When will that license show up? And when it does, then what?? She's been forced to move across the country, leave her home and most her possessions behind on the hope of getting this job and making enough money to stave off foreclosure and homelessness. She found a cheap, several day flight that will zigzag her back to Florida for a few days. I don't know what her plan is now. But my care package that I'd been piecing together for her has been abandoned for now.

* My father, during this same week, was in the hospital. He drove all the way to the V.A. hospital in Iowa for some migraine-fighting botox shots he's been getting. He didn't feel well during his visit. They took his blood pressure and it was 70/30. It took them four days to diagnose and fix the underlying issues. Basically, he was on a diuretic for some ankle swelling which dehydrated his body, super-concentrated all his heart medications in his system, and stressed his kidneys. So on day four, we still hadn't been told he was in the hospital, as per usual, but the doctors are telling him that they've done what they could to fix him up and the rest would take time. He protested but they kicked him out of the hospital. He was 65 miles from home and feeling faint and lightheaded. So, being my dad, he doesn't call anybody. He gets into his Corvette and proceeds to drive home as quickly as he could so he'd get there before passing out. (Yeah. Think about that one. Then think about what my husband does for a living and you can imagine all the *headdesking* that was going on here.) At home, he called us so we'd know what happened if he was found dead (his words) and then laid in bed for another four days. Luckily, his cleaning lady bought him some groceries and gatorade and he's feeling well enough to be upright now. Still. I don't know how he is surviving all these near-death encounters and I really don't understand why he still tells me that he's just waiting to feel better from 30 years of assorted illness before he does anything with his life.

* Daniel's new employee starts work here in Chicago on Monday. It is weird because Daniel has, until now, been the sole man in his firm's "Chicago Office" and the benefit to that is that we rented an apartment near our (too small, not selling) condo for his office space and to effectively double our square footage. It is a two-bedroom place. One bedroom is Daniel's office. The other is mine (and Graeme's playroom). Tom, the newbie, gets to take over the living room. I'm not sure what to expect. Will Graeme and I be kinda run out as it becomes a professional office? Or will Tom become part of the family and get used to Graeme spreading pretzel crumbs everywhere and coloring on all his important documents? :)

* We ordered a big desk for Tom from an office furniture company. The delivery window was 48 hours! And by "delivery" they mean the time when the truck pulls up, opens its doors, and you and your burly office staff go and get the furniture, carry it up to the third floor via staircases, and put it together yourself. So Daniel had to go on an inspection in Minneapolis today and, as luck would have it, the truck arrived. Only they didn't show up at the office, they showed up at our house first and then had to find their way to the office after a bunch of phone calls. (My bad, totally my bad! I put the billing address and not the delivery.) So there I am with Graeme in a front carrier, out in the rain, with a pissed-off delivery driver and no way to get these six ginormous boxes up the stairs. Would they deliver it the next day when my husband was around? (No.) How about he just help me get it off the truck and onto the adjacent sidewalk from where I could hope to recruit help? (No. The boxes would get rained on, he said.) Could I pay him to help me carry stuff up? (Maybe, despite the fact that he isn't supposed to.) So Angelo, my housekeeper/decorator/personal assistant, ran over from the condo to help carry stuff, despite his hernia. (The guilt! The guilt is piling up!!) The driver helped, a lot, and cursed me up and down each flight of stairs with all six boxes. Short of falling upon some cutlery, I could not have apologized more. I gave him $100 when he was leaving a few minutes later and he took the money, said he appreciated it in a tone of voice close to "get stuffed", and went on to curse me out some more. Holy crap, it was awful. Luckily, Angelo was there to say nice things to me later and help the guy out the door.

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