A week later exhaustion causes me to take time off driving and spend some time at home. My mom passed away several years ago. Leaving my dad and I to our own devices.
That my dad is still alive and kicking proves that only the good die young.
He and I share a house. Correction I have an address that I pay for where he lives and entertains.
Dad lost his leg a few years back. He likes to pretend he lost it in Vietnam, (He wouldn’t have been even crawling) but he actually lost it kickin’ an alligator in the head. The alligator, he says, tried to steal his beer. Seeing this calamity in progress he leapt up and kicked at the alligator. The alligator let go of the fishy smelling case of beer and defended himself by snapping at the thing tormenting him. So Dad lost a leg but kept the beer. He says it was a fair trade.
I’m sure if the alligator was asked he would not agree. Dad is a tough old bird and likely caused that alligator indigestion for weeks.
When I arrived at home I noticed two familiar pick ups in the front drive. I jumped out of my cab, grabbed my rucksack and walked around back. Dad, as usual was sittin on the back pier with a pole in the water and a beer in his hand. His friends Guy and Bo Sitting alongside him staring off into space.
This was a time old tradition.
Our old tomcat Bob weaved his tailless way toward me. “Hey dad I’m in for a few days!” I yelled by way of greeting. “What Ya cookin’ for dinner?” was the return. One of the few things I could do besides drive a truck was cook. “How about fried tacos mexican rice and some beans?” I called back. That roused the sidekicks to look hopefully at my parental unit. “Sounds good.” was the only reply I got. The Two chuckle heads having secured by some osmosis or other mystical inference an invitation, settled back down to blissful emptiness.
I ventured into the house, and stopped short in the heavily draped living room. It was pitch black. I squeezed my eyes shut trying to get my eyes to adjust. The cat began to hiss and growl. Something scittered across the room. The cat ran back out the door. Coward! I reached for the light switch. Dad always kept it so dark in here. The light wouldn’t come on. I moved a little ways into the room thinking to turn on a lamp. Feeling my way blindly across the room. My sight starting to adjust finally was arrested by a darker shadow standing outlined in front of the heavy curtains.
There were the eyes again. The sense of my name being called.
Something was coming towards me. I stumbled back, reaching for a door that was too far away.
My chest tightened. My mouth got dry. Time seemed at a stand still for a minute.
My body just stood there as my mind screamed “RUN!” I could hear myself whimpering.
Suddenly the world was filled with brightness and sound. I almost peed. “Oh! You scared me! Why are you standing here in the dark?” my grandmother reprimanded, “Girl, have you lost all good sense?” She moved around the room straightening things up looking over her shoulder at me. My grandmother and I have a very strong family resemblance. Both of us have that long dark hair and Botticelli beauty.
Our faces have no sharp edges only pleasant curves. The skin tones of dark honey and light roses. My dad was a masculine version with a deep rumbling voice. Women literally went crazy over him. He only ever loved my mom.
We are all tall and lean. That’s where the resemblance ends. She is a neat freak and she and my dad both are kind of collectors of random stuff. I on the other hand am a minimalist and I hate to clean.
I broke out of my trance and looked around the room. There was nothing there. I walked over and lifted up the couch. Nothing.
Behind the curtains, nothing.
My grandmother stood and watched me with a look of long-suffering on her face.
“Girl I swear you spend too much time alone. Now you are gettin’ strange even in company,” she declared. She walked out of the room without another word.
Alone the goose-flesh came back and I started to get scared, So I grabbed my keys made a run for the door and went grocery shopping.
I slept with the lights on that night again.