Friday, June 30, 2006

Day 4

The last of our belongings have been loaded onto the wagon train. Except for the 6 full boxes sitting in our lodge waiting to be sorted by this eve, the 2 other boxes waiting at the old homestead, the 4 suitcases, 3 laundry baskets and several bags also awaiting examination and shipment on the Pony Express. This does, therefore, call for extreme action on my part, mainly by sitting down to record these events. Also petting the dog.

It is silent here at the temporary lodge. The silence is rare and wondrous, and I can almost relax except in the knowing that the bugle of need will be sounding through at any moment and I must be ready at attention, able to collect the dog and all necessaries and rush out to rescue the children or the husband or both at the same time.

We have been to the water hole twice, the children could stay in for days. The youngest is learning to put her head under and blow bubbles. She is quite excited by the fact that, if you open your eyes underwater no matter how much it stings, YOU CAN SEE THE BOTTOM OF THE POOL!

We are getting desperate for nutrition having shot some KFC last night and a clown with a red wig today. I can only hope something better will come along this evening.

The call has come. I must go. If you find my stricken starving self, please give me m & ms.

Later in the day;
All members of the party have been rescued and fed. We have said our sad but good- humored goodbyes to our very good friends, Abby ‘Abicus’, Turk ‘Mr. Incredible’, Jenna ‘Cinderella’ and Drew ‘Buzz’ Wilson. A future Wilson is on the way, Marcinda Delmonico Fantasia incredakid Wilson, AKA little klingon. We will also not forget Jesus the alligator and Sid, their giant skink, who shall go down in history as the only immortal skink in the world.

I’m afraid I was only ½ present for the farewells, being too full of what needs to be done and too empty at leaving our home and friends, but I am consoled by Turk, who was the same, except he was full of painkillers from surgery and the empty would then be self explanatory. Tomorrow we need to send a smoke signal to Loretta ‘You gonna’ make something of it Fella’ Feldman, Abby’s mom (from Chicago), who has also been a wonderful friend and neighbor and without whom, we would never have met the Incredifamily.

Let us not say “goodby” my friends, but rather, “We need to come back soon to see if Sid is alive”. (are you guys SURE she was just hiding under that towel?)

Thursday, June 29, 2006

Day 3

Day 3
Continuing from yesterday, when all seemed well at the end of the day, surprise!, I developed a migraine and mysterious leg cramps, severe enough to end me up in the town ER. I had been carrying heavy objects and running up and down 2 flights of steps about a thousand times and training the dog. They surveyed the damage and declared dehydration and muscle strain, pumped me full of saline and painkillers and after 6 hours sent me home with no further help. It was a rough night. These backwoods university Docs need to catch up with the 18th century.

The main wagon pulled up this morning, along with the pregnant packer person. 4 hearty men and a nursing mother came along to help with the packing. It’s a family affair, the main driver being the father of the baby. Once again everyone seems surprised at the largesse of our belongings. Someone, somewhere missed the boat here. The group is good spirited and I am encouraged from the beginning. Needless to say, everyone received a bit of “Snack” money at the end and lots and lots of Gaiter-Aid.

We have reached our first encampment this evening. The children are restless and in need of nourishment. I have sent Robb out to hunt a chicken, but he keeps getting distracted. We are hoping he will bag something before sunset. We plan to play in the water hole after dinner, and our host will provide breakfast in the morning. The youngest keeps writing notes about her desperation,

“I am soud…”
“I am stil sad…”
“I dont no what to doo…”
“Im stil var var sad nou…”
“is dad going to be hom soon?”

Obviously we are in dire straights…

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Day 2

We were up and going with the birds today, readying safe zones in the house and getting everyone’s teeth brushed. A small setback, the packers ended up being a packer, fairly small even for a big job. We’ve given her extra provisions to keep her going. There was some confusion as to just how much we have to load onto the main wagon. As it is, she has sent a messenger to try and get more help. If she does this herself, I believe she is deserving of a big tip!

All the animals are quiet, so I am left in peace to record our proceedings, which may or may not be of value to others following our trail. Tonight we will either dine on raw fish, or find some way to cook it in a leftover oven with no utensils or pots. Otherwise we may be stopping in one of the local saloons.

Well, it took me a bit to realize it, but the brave woman packing up our things is Pregnant! Yep, I kept thinking, “Why is this woman going to the bathroom so much? Is she pregnant or something?” And then the shoe dropped, or the belly showed. Talk about your big tip now! I’m hiding out at a coffee shop to entertain Bindi for a bit. I did have to get myself a banana split for nourishment, else I might not have survived. Bindi is helping me type. It’s probably time to head back and supervise now.

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

The journey south, a record, day 1

The first day is really a pre-day. The company’s leaders’ spirits are low; there is so much to do and so few of us to do it. Our supplies are being set aside, but the wagon can only hold so much. The newest member of the company, Bindi the dog, must have sensed our desperation and learned quickly where to urinate, so that we would not have him along as a food source. The guinea pig and the birds may not be so lucky. We have a second difficulty with Bindi, who, following in the proud tradition of many members of our family, gets wagon sick and howls pitifully on long hauls. I will go to the general store to purchase earplugs tomorrow.

There are some workfolk coming to pack up the rest of the homestead on the morrow. The children of the party are nervous that the packers will covet some of their belongings and make away with them. Needless to say, we are sending the younger folk out for the day. Our provisions at this point mainly consist of salt and sugar sources, but we are hoping to add some meats and fresh produce soon.

The children have been helping as they can; the small one whines a bit more than the older one, so we may bribe the older one to entertain the younger. This can be difficult, since at about 3 feet distance they each complain that the other is breathing on them.

Our first stop will be a La Quinta. I think this means, “The Shack” in Spanish. We shall see. They do allow animals, which alone may say everything. We will use this as a base-camp before setting out on the longer part of the journey. Some kin of ours will meet us on the first leg of the trip and feed us breakfast. We surely do appreciate the offer. One can get tired of warm milk, stale bread and old muffins offered by many lodgings.

The Dr. in our party is very nervous. It is on his shoulders that our success at our destination lays. We are trying to comfort him as we can, but it is a burden he must bear, until he becomes accustomed to our new life in the South. He is a big man with broad shoulders enough to see it through and has been trained to have confidence enough if he remembers.

Signed; Pam ‘Whipper’ E
June 27, 2006

Saturday, June 24, 2006

Southern Hospitality

While visiting Signal Mountain, the sight of our new home, I stayed in a B&B for the first time in years. The owners, Susan and Earl, were wonderful and the epidomey of what I consider Southern. Susan had lived in that same house for 30 years. It is decorated in early "Stuff" style, a collection of, well, everything. Panels of artwork next to tapestry, antique furniture and a beautiful yard with a front flower garden any gnome would be happy to inhabit.

From my perch at my private breakfast table on the second floor I could look down on the garden and watch the Over the Hedge dramas unfold down below. Along with this amazing view of color and variety was the color and variety of my breakfast. As you can see, just as attractive as the garden. In a way it was very French, little bits of each side dish in little bowls or plates with the main course and any added flavorings. The hit though is the fruit bowl with a great variety topped with yogert, whip cream and crushed chocolate graham crumbs. Oh man did I savour that thing!

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

The Couch that ate Chattanooga

Psychologists say that couples who stay together for a long time tend to take on one another’s tastes, therefore becoming more like each other, like people and their pets. This can put a damper on the said relationship, since our differences are what attract us to each other (at one level).

Not a problem in between Robb and I. Viva la difference!…..but for buying furniture.

There is joy in the air as we enter furniture stores, each of us full of anticipation at getting a little more furniture for our new house, which is twice as big as our present one and we have an absolute minimum of furniture anyway. However, that joy is quickly dashed as from first breath we part ways, I towards my marshmallow art deco curved couch sets, and he towards his clean-lined hard modern pieces.

We can each look over the fence at the others choices and say, “Oh, yeah, that’s ok…”. But actual agreement is hard to come by. If there were such a thing as Danish Modern, Art Deco, curved, comfortable, modern, wood, leather, metal, fabric couches in good taste, we would blend ever so harmoniously, but this is not yet to be.

To illustrate:
Robb’s choice;

Pam’s choice;

My choices need to be comfortable, cushy, inviting, clean but with character. His
needs to be sleek, Danish modern, visually attractive but not necessarily comfortable. I like curves, he goes for lines. He really likes big sectionals, I like a variety of pieces. He likes dark cave-like dwellings, I like light and air. I love world influences, Japan, Morocco, the Mid-East Italy, he likes Danish Modern. We do both agree that French Provincial is out. Maybe.

He has difficulty with the big picture, it’s scary and unknown. Better stick with a single focus, as in…that chair, and Danish Modern. Just that chair. Don’t confuse me with the rest of the room. I’m a big pic gal. Here is the fireplace and here is the kitchen bar, all things must have harmony with these areas….

We’ve come to one agreement, he will decorate the study, and I will decorate the master bedroom. Ah Ha Ha Ha! (evil laugh)

Bedroom: but with lighter colors and more silk

Study: but with Danish Modern

We have now view so many websites with examples of couches that I’m dreaming about driving around in a giant fire engine. Oh wait, wrong dream…

Anyway, the search continues, stay tuned…(the Mr. wants space for rebuttal.)

P.S. You might be saying to yourself, wow, you're lucky you can afford to buy any furniture at all, why disagree about it? Well, if you saw what we've been living with for the last 9 years, you'd understand...