Routine 3: yesterday's coffee heated up and egg on toast. My new pants are ridiculously long. Iron patchwork from last night and rush out of the house. Woke up too fast still tired but didn't sleep well anyway.
Today she is in her pajamas. Looking through her purse for the accident information, finding everything as if it were new. Trying to explain how she hit the boy's car: monstrous curbs, a loud honk, her turning startled into his car. Can we stop at the insurance place? No. I called them on Tuesday. Won't do any good.
Tired. My eyes hurt. The rain has pooled into a great puddle by Willowrest in the two hours since I was last there. Onto the highway, Hydroplane Lane. She tells the story of the day her mother died and the dog ate the tube of cerulon blue. Sitting on the floor trying to make the puppy vomit. All the dogs at the vet's howling. They are sad because she is sad. And the vet saying "she'll be okay" but no, Marnie's dead. I promise we can buy paint after we buy cleaning supplies.
At the store she buys two of the biggest size of each thing- does that make the place cleaner? She is drawn to the broken things on the clearance rack. Money in her pocket and still buying broken. I talk her out of it. My boss would say "It's the adult thing to do." Too tired today for this.
Walking in a daze tot he craft store, the rain falling harder and harder. Picking up crap and commenting on it. I don't want a blue t-shirt, I don't want a stretch bracelet. I want to go home. I feel myself getting condescending. I dont want to do that. She buys tubes and tubes of paint. I buy yarn I don't need, because I need to do something. I feel selfish with my time. I want to make the trip partly for me.
On the way home I am hungry. I don't want to eat out but I won't have time to stop at home before work, so we stop at the rest stop in Beverly. Sub with vegetables and chicken, not so bad for me. Coffee and muffin for her. Through the purse again and chewing chewing chewing with her mouth open. I am losing patience, if I had any today. More stories, everything always about her. I try to talk. I'm tired. I am just quiet after a while.
In the car ont he way home The Connection is on, talking about fonts. My mother is a great sign painter. She has designed several type faces in her day. Today hand lettering is nearly obselete. She laughs at the anmes of fonts and recalls her favorites.
At the house I help her bring everything in, unpack the bags. Put the new dish pan and dish drain to use. The black grime is on everything again. It's from the coffee pot, an old percolator. Black from the gas flame. I take time to wash it off, scrubbing years of soot off before going to work. It's the only way. It won't come off my hands and I have to go.
At work now, things not going quite right, and all I want to do is go home and take a bath.