Mike and Donovan and I are going home this weekend. The translation of that sentence is that we are going to MY home to visit my family in Ohio. This is a trip that is filling me with a modicum of dread. Since we were last there (Christmas?) my folks’ health has declined. My Dad, especially, is not doing well. For the past month, apparently, he’s been slipping back into dementia, asking my 48 year old sister why she isn’t in school or when his dead brother is coming back. He’s been thru this sort of thing on several occasions and usually it means that his oxygen needs to be upped. Its hard on everyone, especially my Mom, who has her own problems.
It’s hard to have two homes. It’s hard to be away from home. I’d almost say that sometimes its unbearable but that’s a bit dramatic and, after all, I do have a well stocked liquor cabinet.
Less traumatic but still wrenching: I grew up in the old part of Elyria. From my street over from behind my folks’ house, the city is tearing down ALL of the houses to build some (most probably) wal-mart looking new mega highschool. That means all the lovely, peeling Victorian houses with deep porches and crazy stained glass are going to be gone. Last time we were home there was a chainlink fence around the pink and white house with the porthole windows and the pagoda roof on the corner of 7th street . I had that feeling I get whenever I see a beautiful tree with a Cut-This-One-Down dot spraypainted on it: I wanted to rip down the fence and set up a squat. Over my dead body, Bulldozer Boy! Go plow down a freakin’ Walgreens or something!
Oh: and one of the houses they’re tearing down belonged to Sherwood Anderson.
At least we’ll have Donovan with us. Babies can’t fix everything but at least they steer the conversation away from "Everybody Loves Raymond," complaints about hearing aids, doctors and the weather.