Saturday, August 02, 2008

First Day With Mom

















My first day with Mom I brought lunch over to her apartment. Sandwiches and sweet potato chips and gumbo. We took a nap and just as we were getting up Ken, Mom's old hiking buddy, dropped by with a big box of Russell Stover's. He combed his hair, sat down, and talked money, politics, travel.

When he left Mom and I drove out to River Park. All the buildings along the 13-mile River Walk are decorated with colorful fish like the ones in the photo. School kids made them out of little tiles–there must be thousands of fish in all–an incredible project.

But soon as we got to the park it started thundering and lightning. We sat in the car with the windows down for a few minutes. The temperature had dropped and the air was fresh and had that before-storm smell. When rain started falling we drove to Belk and tried on clothes. We found two soft pairs of pull-on pants for Mom with vertical pockets, and a light sand-colored jacket with big buttons. BIG SUCCESS! We were so happy that we decided to drive straight to the Big Table for dinner. I asked Mom if she'd like to stop for a bottle of wine on the way. She told me she usually didn't participate in that sort of thing, but that she'd be willing to try a tiny bit. I bought a bottle of Chateau St. Jean Gew├╝rztraminer.

At the restaurant I poured her a little and me a lot. We had a toast. She tasted it and said, "It makes the tongue bright."

We split an order of crab cakes. They came with French green beans and blue cheese mashed potatoes. This tiny restaurant has wonderful food. Every time Mom took a bite of bean she would say, "I don't understand how these little bitty green things can be so good."

We had a great time together. Back at her assisted living joint, we walked slowly up to the big door. Before we went in she paused and touched my arm. "Now who should I introduce you as?" she asked me. "Are you my sister-in-law's daughter?"