Life with Father

The weekend.  Time to spend time with Dad.

I need to do so strenuous sports activity first.  Relieves the stress of the impending visit to Dad’s house and lunch at the Coffee Shop of the Undead.

In the cab to Dad’s, I prepare mentally for the visit: Dad will be in an insane-looking outfit, I will go on a treasure hunt for scam solicitations for which he tries to send checks (the aides hold them for us), and a further hunt for things he says he hides (when we ask why he hides, he really doesn’t know).

SIDEBAR: I note that many older people burrow and hide stuff Dad is no different — he burrrows and hides money and mail.  He never did this before.  I am scared to think how close are the DNAs of beavers and elder humans.  No kidding.

I go through the mail and trash 99% of it — scam solicitations aimed at the elderly.

I have worked up an appetite on the Rings and now schlepping pounds of scam solicitations to the garbage chute down the hall from Dad’s apartment.  I am starving.

We head to the Coffee Shop of the Undead.

Vassily takes our orders.  In the beginning, we were in Nick’s station but as our lunch crowd got bigger, we had to move into Vassily’s station.  He is now used to my having two entrees for lunch.  He knows Dad’s and his attendant’s orders without asking.  The rest of us order.  Vassily knows to supersize whatever I order because I am always hungry.  He no longer asks if we are expecting another person after I order.

H., Dad’s aide, starts in almost immediately.

“One of the other attendants woke your father at 7am, when he was sleeping.”

Really, H.?  That is how you start lunch conversation?

 “[H.], doesn’t he usually get up at 7am?”

“Well, he has been napping more and sleeping until 10am!!”

“So, [the other aide] woke him up at the normal time?”


“Ok, if Dad went back to sleep, I don’t care!”

Oh my G-d, please stop with the internecine battles.  Dad doesn’t usually sleep so late, so the other aide was probably making sure he wasn’t dead.

SIDEBAR:  Hell, if I were there and Dad weren’t awake, I would make sure he were alive.  Just sayin’.

And she was probably trying to avert H.’s saying “he wasn’t dressed and fed before she arrived at 8am” in her report to the supervisor.

Frankly, Dad’s sleeping so much makes me think he is winding down his life.  At that scares the hell out of me.

I was grateful that H. took pity on me and didn’t give me the list of grievances against the other aides for not taking good enough care of Dad when she is not around.

I love how much she loves Dad. And we love her, but others take care of Dad in a different way and he is safe and happy and that is what we want.

Yet, we have to deal with the soap opera surrounding Dad’s care.  It is a new soap opera, “As My Stomach Turns”.