Absolutely beautiful in every way!
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Working on my tablet that won’t let me save work unleessd I publish. Will be changing this in just a few minutes. Sorry!!!
Just in response to your title: “Where have all the spiders gone?”, I can assure you we have an over abundance in and around our house, our neighborhood, our part of San Diego County.
My daughter was bit on the forearm a few years ago and it got extremely nasty, convincing her it had been a Brown Recluse based on internet searches of this regions known spiders and the progression of the affected area. The large scar she’s left with looks cavernous and as though she had some flesh eating disease. It’s about 4 inches across and doesn’t resemble any other type of wound. We were told there are no Brown Recluse spiders in this rural area. The only known poisonous spiders here are the Black Widow, Brown Widow and Desert Recluse.
After showing my own doctor photos of the scar he told me that there has been some cross breeding experiments at a nearby University lab that involved the Black Widow and Brown Recluse. Unfortunately some of spiders offspring have found their way into this environment. Still, my daughter has a number of health problems that have required visits with a large variety of specialists, including some on the cutting edge of brain plasticity and other neurological areas. Without fail, the doctors ask her about that scar.
I’m not usually susceptible to the worst case results of spider bites but have been bit while outside and within about five minutes experienced tongue swelling and tingling in the extremities. After several very large doses of Benedryl allergy medicine along with using concentrated oxygen (about 92%) I began to feel throat opening up again, and a tongue that was again able to remain in the confines of my closed mouth. So I cancelled the ambulance.
My adult brain-compromised daughter and I live together in a fairly rural setting, though we do have a neighbor that can be reached in about seven minutes of walking. Looking back at the sequence of events that night when my swollen tongue made it impossible to speak clearly it struck me as having potential comedic value. Like Lucy in the old TV series “I Love Lucy”. She and her Cuban born husband had plenty of problems that began with a misunderstanding of phrases, or a literal interpretation of something tossed out without thinking. Ricky’s accent was strong and during excited times he sometimes interspersed Spanish into his dialogue, seemingly unaware.
Results of literal translations and responses appropriate to that understanding constantly created problems in the Ricardo household, like when Lucy stepped out leaving their baby’s care to Rickey Ricardo. I seem to recall a fuss over the phrase “Don’t throw the baby out with the bath water.” My daughter and I also have to work at understanding each other from time to time. Usually when I’m trying to hurry. Attempting to convey the message that my tongue was swelling inspired a rational response from her: “What? I didn’t hear you.”. So I tried to tell her again to call an ambulance as I felt myself getting weaker. She replied “Mom, quit screwing around and talk right”. When I garbled another attempt she gave a sigh of exasperation, turned back to the TV and said she would come find me when her movie was over.
I should explain that Alex and I do goof around quite a bit. We are both adults stuck with just each other almost 24/7. Chronic pain for both of us could result in a severe, unrelenting depression that would rob us of our intentions and efforts to get better and live a more normal life. So comedy is one of my talents (ok, maybe torture devices is more appropriate) to help keep us mostly sane. Kind of.
So, her reaction to me talking weird, being adamant about getting her attention, and uncompromising willingness to ruin the last part of a movie she was invested in meant to her that a) I was super invested in my stupid pantomime and couldn’t wait, or b) that I was again trying to make a point that her TV watching time was excessive, or c) Moms just being a bitch because I said I’d do something before getting involved in another movie, or d) this is some new dumb trick related to another TV show she wants me to see.
You’ll notice her guesses all are “me” inspired. That’s part of the brains frontal lobe not picking up the slack for other parts that are familiar with such concepts like empathy, sympathy, appropriate emotional responses; basically the higher functions that can sustain relationships.
I grab a pen and a card on her nightstand that I’d gifted her with recently. Horrified, she grabs it back. “No! That’s Mine!” I’m getting a bit frantic now as I grab the straw out of her drink and hurry to her adjacent bathroom.
“Hey! I was using that!” She’s getting annoyed now so I simply shut the bathroom door, leaving her outside with remainder of her movie.
Eventually, it all works out. My tongue and throat were starting to return to normal size when I jammed the straw in, scratching the space where my tonsils used to be. As the crisis begins to pass I hear Alex banging on the door, and apparently having caught on I hear her yelling on the phone for a doctor to come. I roll my eyes as I hear her shout.
“I don’t know! First she tried to steal my best pen and a card she gave me a week ago but I got them back. Then she stole my straw out of my drink and started jamming it in her mouth and she went in MY bathroom! She has her own bathroom! What if I need to pee?
She didn’t say anything! She just grabbed her throat and was making animal sounds…
Not loud, sqeeky. Now she’s locked me out of my very own bathroom and isn’t saying anything. Wait a minute. Now she’s stuffing toilet paper under the door. Maybe she ran in my bathroom because she was out of tp.
My movie is almost over with and she wrecked it.
Hold on, I’m going to see if my movie will be on again…”
Five minutes of loud Blues pass before Alex hears approaching sirens. An ambulance, a couple cop cars, some fireman cars and three different fire trucks park right outside of Alex’s room now and some people are rushing towards the front door.
Again Alex tries to talk to the 911 lady.
“Why are there police? I didn’t do Anything wrong! Did you send the police after me? Just because I wanted to watch my movie??? That’s fucked up. You haven’t helped me at all! And that’s what your job is! You should get fired!”
Alex is upset as she makes her way to her bathroom.
“Mom? Can I come in? There are policemen and fire trucks outside and I think I might have to throw up.”
Finally mom opens the door. It smells like she threw up and Alex’s pen is in the garbage.
Mom is sitting on the floor and has changed into her pajamas and robe.