It’s been one of those weeks… you know what I mean. A week when you can’t bear to watch the news anymore but you must — you must. A week when you want to talk to every person you’ve ever befriended and tell them how great they are. A week when you want to assume the fetal position in the depths of your new bed and pull the sheets tight around your head. You know what I mean… one of those weeks. The sorrow of tragedy that has us reaching out to each other in a desperate attempt to plead, “I’m here. I care. Let’s be friends.”
I’ve been spending the last several days building bookcases and hanging curtains and assessing the needs of my yard and positioning and re-positioning pictures and artwork and knick knacks. I’ve been having a great time, getting things just so, making it all mine — this home that I bought. I’m down to the last few decorating needs — a runner for the hallway, an area rug for my wine drinking/book reading/thinking/conversing area, something to put on the wall in the dining room although what that is I have no idea — it will come to me eventually. I’ve been feeling rather at peace. The weather finally changed with the time. The sun has been warming the ground and my heart, geese have been frolicking in the pond across the street, birds are singing and children are playing… and then there’s this:
I needed to go to <insert large retail store name here that many people are boycotting but I can’t bring myself to boycott because I love all their stuff too much> to purchase a couple of bookcases that I’ve had my eye on for weeks and just needed to convince myself to spend the money. The morning started out great. I took all my kids to get their hair cut — they’re so freaking adorable. The day was warm and sunny and filled with fun things to come (mainly because I was returning them to their father’s house so I had the WHOLE day to myself — really, they’re freaking adorable). After the hair cuts I drove through a fast food chain to load them up on sugary drinks before I said my goodbye’s for the day — then I dropped them off and I was free.
My first though was, of course, “I need coffee”. But, I need to confess, when I say I drink coffee, what I really mean is I drink soy mocha hazelnut coffee — no whip. The soy part fools my mind into thinking it’s a healthier option (please, no spoilers). I pulled through my favorite local coffee-house and ordered the biggest size “coffee” they had. The nice girl making it and I shared laughs through the window as she stirred and mixed my concoction. She passed my super size coffee to me as we giggled some more and, then, during the hand-off, one of us erred (I think you can all guess who), the lid popped off and the entire super sized gooey mess of coffee heaven was on me, my steering wheel, my console, my phone, my GPS, my ass… everywhere. My hands immediately stuck to the steering wheel and I was overcome with the aroma of the coffee that my lips would never know. I drove off slowly, my mouth fixed in an awkward open position.
I drove home, in shock, to change clothes. I convinced myself that it was merely a minor setback to the day — I will overcome. I wiped enough off the steering wheel to avoid my hands being plastered there indefinitely and figured I would clean the rest later… I wanted my bookcases. Before I left my house, my neighbor called me over for a chat about grass and shrubs and all those things neighbors talk about. I ended the conversation and got in my car, heading to the unnamed store once again. I was still overcome with the smell of the soy mocha hazelnut coffee… no whip, but now it had clearly turned to a smell rather than a pleasant aroma. I had the sunroof open and the windows to breathe in the fresh air. I remarked to myself how similar the coffee smell was to dog doo — then I realized, yes, I had at some point in my pleasant conversation with the neighbor planted my foot an inch deep in a sticky gooey mess of another kind. And now I was driving down the road, making feeble attempts at not putting my foot down on the gas pedal or the brake pedal or the carpet — I drove all the way to said retail store using nothing but the tip of my shoe. I found a patch of grass in the parking lot and proceeded to, nonchalantly of course, scrape my shoe all around — I wanted my bookcases.
The purchase was made and I only saw a few noses raise in perplexed silence as I walked by… homeward bound — I had my bookcases. I began my drive home, with my head hanging out the window, feeling like I had almost conquered the day, I had almost won. I looked up at the four-way stop to the car directly across from me and saw a pleasant-looking older man — with a parrot on his shoulder. A live parrot. I could actually see the man and the parrot talking to one another — driving down the road. I waited for the music to Twilight Zone to start playing — I might have felt better if it had. When I got home I realized that my bookcases were really big… and heavy. The young man who loaded them in the car assured me they weren’t that heavy. I’m assuming he couldn’t foresee the steps I needed to climb.
Once I had wrangled the boxes up the steps and placed them carefully on the floor to be built, I decided I needed that cup of coffee now. I did my best to re-create the mocha hazelnut masterpiece and sat down to enjoy — I carefully brought the piping hot liquid to my lips and proceeded, somehow, to spill the entire cup all over me… and the chair and the carpet and the laptop. I let out a little scream and a few perfectly placed curse words and walked away as my dogs licked up my gooey mess.
I had escaped the news of the world’s tragedy briefly and my life continued to revolve and evolve. I imagine that’s the way this is all suppose to work. Tragic events unfold a world away, we reach out to those we need, we scream to be heard. The day was only half complete — two spilled cups of coffee, one accurate placement of my foot in the dog doo, a strained back, a talking parrot riding in a car… on a mans shoulder, and two bookcases that needed to be assembled… and oh yeah — my dogs need therapy.