Sunday, July 30, 2017

Summer camp, recalcitrant dogs, and a lovely dinner

Jacob left for two weeks at Sky Ranch today. This will be his fourth year at the camp, and he loves it. I’m happy for him, but of course will miss him. The neat thing: he gave me not one but two goodbye hugs—and they were tight hugs, not what I had been calling his passive hugs where he kind of leaned into me and let me hug him. He came out to say goodbye, hugged me, and I said the usual things about having fun and being careful. Then he hung around the driveway, waiting for his parents to be ready to leave. When they appeared, he came back in and announced another hug. Both times, he also had lingering farewells with Sophie who didn’t understand but welcomed his love. I told him to just imagine how ecstatic she’ll be to see him after two weeks, and he grinned.

He’s been practicing his cursive again a bit, and announced last night that he really wanted to write a letter in cursive from camp. I’m assuming, and hoping, that letter will be addressed to me.

Friends Teddy and Sue, knowing I would be alone tonight, invited me for supper. Teddy came to pick me up and help feed the dogs—his part of the job was to go in the house and bring the dogs out. Easier said than done. Those two balked at coming into the cottage; when we finally got them both inside, we closed the door so they couldn’t wander out. Then they just looked at their food. In frustration, Teddy and I poured small glasses of wine and sipped while we cajoled. After what seemed forever, both dogs ate out of the same bowl and ignored the other one. Sophie, who scarfed down her food immediately, kept looking like, “What’s the holdup here? I want my treat.” Getting the Cavaliers back into the house and their crate was another painful project. I finally gave Teddy small milk bones to lure them.

Lovely evening with good conversation. We talked about everything from friends and family to politics, people they recently met, my work, religion, you name it, and we lingered a long time at the dinner table—the best kind of dinner party. I don’t get steak very often, so steak that Teddy grilled to perfection (quite rare) was a treat.I brought maybe a third of my steak home—lunch for tomorrow.

I am so grateful for the continuing friendship of these two. Sue lived next door to me when her two children were quite young—the oldest is now a senior at the University of Arkansas and the youngest, a high school senior. She was then newly single. Since then she has built herself a strong career as a writer and marketing professional to major international law firms. Sue is Canadian, and her parents are in Ottawa—a long way away—so she named me her Fort Worth mom, a title that honors me. Teddy came on the scene maybe six years ago or so, and is perhaps the best thing she’s found in forever. I adore him.

A bonus: we took my walker, but only in case I had to go to the loo, one place Teddy wouldn’t walk me. I walked from my house to the car, up a medium long sidewalk at their house, from kitchen to dining table, and, at evening’s end, back to the car. Teddy’s strong arm made me confident, and he told me to hold my wrist firm. He’s a chiropractor and said he could feel the bones in my wrist popping. He predicted trouble in that right wrist if I didn’t start holding it straight, so I did. That made me put more weight on my legs, which was good. I was full, happy, and proud of my walking when I got home.

A good day—with lots of work done despite the big events.

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