Walnut Room this way

Walnut Room this way

Friday, August 3, 2012

On Going Home

Of course you can go home again...the question is, "How long is the recovery period?"  Unlike minute surgery these days, where you spend 45 seconds on the table, 30 minutes in the recovery room, and drive yourself home to go back to work after lunch, "going home" can take a toll on you.  If you have been "home" twice within two months, you have not even recovered from the first trip before you are subjecting yourself to the second deployment.  When I was serving as responder on the coast of Mississippi following Hurricane Katrina, I think it was easier to shower, although I do readily admit, the water was not hot.

We made it home last night, having unexpectedly departed a day earlier than planned.  I say unexpectedly, but Rand is never surprised when I suddenly say, "I am ready to go to Mississippi."  It can actually not truthfully be called "suddenly" since early departure usually begins to cross my mind about the same time we cross the border from Mississippi into Louisiana.

Of all the hardships associated with traveling to our parents these days, I think showering is on the top of my list of things that are best put off until you can find a garden hose and it's dark.

The shower at my father-in-law's was installed when my mother-in-law reached the point she could not get in and out of the tub any more.  It is one of those little plastic hose, plastic head temp showers that attaches to the side of the faucet.  (Temp, but it has been there for around 15 years now).  The shower head has holes the size of a straight pen, so when the water comes out, it is sharp enough to peel skin.  Frankly, it hurts.  I find myself turning the faucet so low that only a dribble comes out.  It takes an hour  and a half to shower, but that is less time than a visit to ER for failure to use precautions.

In an amazing coincidence, Mom has one of those showers consisting of a plastic hose attached to the side of the faucet.  It doesn't remove skin, but you actually have to sit in the tub while showering, unless you intend to mop up water afterwards as there is no shower curtain.

There is actually a real, honest-to-goodness shower in my dad's bathroom.  When they bought the house, someone had added on a bedroom and bathroom, and installed one of those metal pre-fab showers.  It rusted out many years ago, and Dad built a ceramic tile shower.  Years later, he rebuilt that shower with the current version.  The problem is not the shower.  The problem is no one ventures back there (not even sure if the housekeeper goes there) but I try to avoid it unless I am packing a snake-bite kit and wearing hip-boots.  It is better to sit-n-shower.  I am renting one of those harnesses that sky-scraper window cleaners use for my next trip, and hoping I can hire someone to stand outside the bathroom and operate the winch line to raise and lower me pre and post showering--it's either that, or I have to start packing a shower rod and curtain.

We turned off the highway onto our road late last night, and Rand turned on the wipers to clear the sudden fog from the windshield.  The mist was rising from the road and the kudzu jungle beyond as it can only do in Mississippi after dark in the summer.  Now, I'm really home.

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