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Looong Weekend
2006-04-18, 3:40 p.m.

Day 604 Man, That was a Long Weekend

Well, the weekend started out about as bad as it could and still managed to turn out ok. I feel a bit like a pinball, but I think all my bouncing around will have been worth it in the end. The telling of the tale of my weekend will be nearly as long as the weekend itself. Grab a pillow and a stiff drink. Then bring me one too, please?

Problems started out Thursday night – centered around our new game “What about Bob?”. Bob (the FIL) had been staying with his son, Wayne and his family for the majority of the time he’s been back up north. They have some younger kids (18 & 14), so there’s people around more often. This is a good thing for Bob. We had been planning on going down to Wayne’s (35 mile drive) Good Friday to pick up Bob, gather up some of the belongings from his house that we were to receive (tools, patio furniture, a lovely 10ft step ladder, that kinda crap) and bring him back up to our house for Cindy’s week off from work. Cindy & Bob were slated to visit several “senior living” communities and get a feel for where Bob might like to permanently settle. Great plans.

Thursday night I was talking on the phone with Wayne, firming up plans for Friday. He mentioned that Bob would like to have his car down there, in the event that he’d actually like to drive it somewhere (not bloody likely – we’re all positive he should NOT be behind the wheel). Since our arrival from Florida his car has been parked in my half of our garage – safe from the elements and not really disturbing Cindy & I at all. We figured to leave it there until a final disposition had been determined.

Let me back track just a wee bit. When Wayne called, a phone not 2 feet from Cindy’s head rang. This was around 7:00 on Thursday evening. I had just called Applebee’s to put in our dinner order (mmmmm, grilled oriental chicken salad, car side to go. What a concept!) Cindy was nearly conscious enough to tell me what she wanted for dinner. Nearly. When Wayne called, he was really returning a call Cindy had made earlier in the day. After slurring out her dinner order to me, Cindy was pounding the pillows, hard. She never heard the phone ring. From 2 feet away. Anyhow, Wayne & I settle the details of my stopping by Friday – including his wife stopping by our house to drop of their daughter (Nicole - 22) so she could drive Bob’s car back down to their house. Bob was on the phone with us the whole time, adding in his $0.02 and happily agreeing with everything Wayne said. I figure fine, not my car, not my choice where it sits when it’s idle.

Wayne & I wrap up our bidness, I take off to Applebee’s to get dinner. Not 10 minutes later, I’m back home. Do all the perfunctory pre dinner rituals. Get out tray tables, silverware, drinks, napkins, roust Cindy out of her alcohol fueled slumber and settle in to watch Survivor (Shut up. I’ve watched nearly every minute of every episode).

Sometime during the course of Survivor, Cindy (who had rallied enough to at least attempt to eat) mentioned that Wayne hasn’t returned her call yet. I’m all WTF?? Did you not hear the phone (that was 2 feet from your head) ring? Did you not notice me walk through the family room 3 or 4 times, on my way to & from the garage a couple of times? The doors opening & closing went unnoticed? I filled her in on the details of what Wayne & I discussed, including Bob’s car heading down to Wayne’s Friday. Something about the car leaving flipped her out. She was adamant that the car not leave our garage. She was blaming me for letting Wayne take the car and insisted that when Wayne’s daughter showed up to get it Friday, she wasn’t letting her in the garage, much less in the car or house. I kept reminding her that her name was not on the title of her dad’s car, therefore she had no say in where it was going, where it was stored or even who drove it. The whole time, she was blaming me for letting this all happen and not backing her up.

I’m again with the WTF? I have to read your mind and do your bidding when you’re too drunk to do it yourself? It’s probably unnecessary to add that she didn’t like hearing that. Secretly, I enjoyed the hell out of saying it. She also denied that she had slept through the original phone call because she was too FUBAR’d to even hear the phone ring. She was kinda pissed at me for saying what I did (duh), but I thought maybe a bit of it penetrated the haze and stuck, in spite of her continued denial of her condition. Her denial was kinda losing steam as our little tiff went on.

Fast forward to Friday morning. I’m up early, have breakfast & hit the gym. (Lousy work out. Slept like shit, had absolutely no energy) From the gym, I head down to Wayne’s. Wayne’s youngest lets me in and tracks down Bob. Start loading up the van. Get a phone call from Wayne (had to work a half day) discuss some stuff, decide to wait for him to get home before I saddle up and take off. Then the feces hits the rotating blades. His wife & daughter are at our (my?) house, waiting to get in. Cindy is obviously home, but not letting them in. Wayne ends up going from work to my house. Cindy is still not letting anyone in. Many phone calls ensue. Bob can’t even operate his own cell phone, so I end up doing double duty, handing off phones, talking to whom ever. Between Bob & I, we finally settle it that the (his) car will remain in my garage. Wayne’s wife returns to her work, their daughter heads home as does Wayne.

Now during all these phone calls (thank Motorola & LG for cell phones) I find out that there is considerable name calling going on between Wayne & Cindy. How very mature! Just like 8 yr old siblings! I ended up getting yelled at by everybody, including Bob, but somehow managed to piss off everyone an equal amount, and salvage some sort of temporary truce.

While everyone was in transit to their next destinations, Bob & I have a nice 40 minute heart to heart talk. We understand where each other stand, and actually agree on the next steps to take in this whole settling down process. Wayne finally arrives home, where Bob & I are cooling our heels. First thing he did was apologize to me for getting all heated up and yelling at me on the phone. This is kinda cool. Two of the people that were just very pissed at me are now trying to play kiss and make up. (Make up sex, however, is out of the question with these two. Just for the record ya know). Now, Wayne, Bob & I spend the next two hours talking quietly amongst ourselves and find out the three of us are more or less on the same page. Wayne is also OK with Bob’s car staying in my garage, housed out of the weather. He kind of prefers it stay there. By moving it to his own house, he thought he was doing as his father asked. I’m fine with that, and file away that little tidbit for future reference. Matter of fact, most of what Bob, Wayne & I talked about is filed away and kept handy for future use.

Drive home with Bob. Nice drive. Lousy weather, but a nice drive. We chat, repeat everything that’s been said over the last 3 hours. That’s mostly due to the Alzheimer’s, but this once, I think the reinforcement can’t hurt. Upon arriving home, Cindy is of course relieved and glad to see her Dad. From there, things start to rapidly improve.

Out of earshot of her Dad, I relate to Cindy everything Wayne and I have been talking about. Wayne is not insisting that Bob live with them and have his wife quit work to be his caretaker. That was only an offer. He is also not insisting that Bob live in a “senior living” community near him (Morgan Estates). That was also just a suggestion. I pointed out to him that the community near him is a 40 minute drive for us, to a location we are normally in only a few times a year. If Bob were to live in a place Cindy and I visited recently (The Legacy), it’s a 15 minute drive for Cindy & I, and he passes within a half mile of the place every day on his trip to/from work. Turns out he didn’t know it existed, and he’d also be amenable to Bob living there.

Also a relief – Bob does NOT want to live full time at Wayne’s and have Wayne’s wife (let’s call her Kay) be his caretaker.

Bottom line is that everyone is concerned about what’s best for Bob. Unfortunately, everyone has their own ideas about just what that is, and no one is talking to anyone else about any of it. What really complicates things is Bob. When asked a question, he provides an answer that will please the immediate audience. He honestly has no recollection of any previous answers he may have given to the same question.

For instance: When asked about who he would like to have power of attorney for him, when at Wayne’s, he of course answered Wayne. At our house, he would like me to be PoA. Cindy has previously requested that PoA be split, with one member of each household being a party to it. The last spin we had on it was that Bob would like Kay and I to split the duties, with the thinking that as in-laws, we would be a little less emotionally involved (with Bob and each other) and able to make clear headed decisions. I think the majority of that opinion was really from Cindy, not Bob.

Curiously, the answer to the question concerning the executor of his estate seemed to be independent of audience. I get that job, no matter who asks the question. I think that’s because this is something that was settled while his wife was still with us and has been in place for many years. This PoA stuff is relatively new and there are no long term memories associated with it.

In a way, seeing as I am executor, I think it would be easier if I were also at least a partner in the PoA. The transition from PoA to executor would be smoother and more immediate. Of course, never having done either, I’m talking straight out of my ass. I really haven’t a clue.

One of the not so funny moments: Wayne relating to me that Cindy had said some indelicate things about his wife (that’d be Kay) at work that somehow got back to Wayne. That had Wayne all worked up to begin with, then this whole deal with the standoff over the car and Kabloooie! I mention this utterance of the indelicacies to Cindy. What we have been able to figure is that Cindy was chit chatting with her office cronies. The subject of her sister-in-law came up – specifically about some wedding shower for the sister-in-laws son (really our nephew) and Cindy going on about how they didn’t get along and how the SIL disliked her and yada, yada, yada. Someone Wayne knew through their kids basketball team overheard Cindy saying something about her SIL. He put what he knew together, (Cindy & Wayne being brother/sister, Cindy’s SIL being Wayne’s wife), relayed the incriminating info to Wayne and got everything completely wrong. What the meddling third party does not know is that Cindy in fact has FOUR sisters-in-law and the one she was berating at the moment is actually one of MY brothers wives (who is kinda weird after all, but way the hell down in Tennessee, practicing her Jehoovers Witlessness nonsense).

Haven’t told Wayne this yet. Cindy doesn’t want me to even bring it up with him. Will someone explain this to me? You have a chance to clear up a misunderstanding and rid the family of a little rancor. You take a pass on the opportunity. Do you WANT people to misunderstand you? Do you LIKE all the family discord?

I have to be at Wayne’s Wednesday for an appointment with a lawyer where we’ll be setting up this power of attorney and executor of the will stuff (with the Bobster). In spite of Cindy wanting me to shut it, I will mention to Wayne what I know. Of course, he didn’t hear it from me. But I can vouch for the entire explanation, and also for my brother’s wife’s ummm, how shall I say, remoteness?, no – alienation, from the normal part of my family. (that’d be everybody but her and that one brother)

I can not pass up the chance to try and repair some of the damage that’s been done recently. I think I can trust Wayne to keep his lip buttoned. I know Kay will appreciate that Cindy does not, in fact, have the kinds of feelings she’s heard about towards her. Besides, as Mom-on-Roof would say – you’re such a . . .MAN, how can you help but try to fix something? Hey, we try. Even if it threatens to blow up in our faces, we try. Not too bright, but with good intentions.

Whew. That gets me through to Saturday. I can fill in the rest later. Let me just add that workouts lately have sucked. I have zero energy and can barely finish me 3 sets with the weights. I’m blaming it on spending all my energy fighting family fires and sleeping poorly. Aerobics tonight, then a day off. Maybe Thursday will find me back up to normal energy wise. I hope.

Updated stats:

Weight start: 206.5 on 1/1/06 (265.0 on 1/15/05)
Current weight 195.75 on 4/15/06 (down 2 from last week!! Nerves??)
Target: 180 by 7/1/06 (getting nearer the target line again)
Next “official” weigh in: 4/22/06

The Keep on Truckin goal: (idea stolen shamelessly from Marn’s Big Adventure)
Miles at speed 4/18/06: 289.13
Miles with cooldown: 318.83
Target for 2006: 1000 miles

Might have to add a little something for the 5K training too.

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old habits - new tricks