January 06, 2008

Welcome to the Jungle

Here I am... beautiful Margaretsville. I have some days off (in a row! Can you imagine!), and since I didn't make it down at Christmas, I'm here for "old" Christmas. You know, the orthodox kind.

For those of you playing along at home, my little cousin Hailey has returned home. She's been home since Thursday and is doing great. She's two and a half weeks old and is already very alert and is almost able to lift her head. She's also very cute, and I got to hold her for the first time this evening. It's pretty neat to watch a newborn wake-up. There are pictures, but I'm in the valley and God has not yet blessed the region of the world with high speed internet, heck, there's not even a Wal-mart!

My grandparents house is a twilight zone. It usually takes me a few minutes to adjust to the heavy silence when I walk in the house. It even feels silent when people are talking... there's this ominous lack of buzzing... the buzzing of the outside world... It's difficult to explain, it starkly contrasts the buzz of my day to day life, the teenagers, the radios, the traffic. That doesn't happen here and in it's place there's a blanket of quiet that will either drive you mad or... well tonight it's only driving me mad so that's all that comes to mind.

Then there's that clock... the constant timekeeper that marks each passing second with a punctuated tick. I've never been here when it hasn't been ticking. It's both a reminder of the history of this small, handmade house, and the future of my ailing grandfather, who is now suffering (not suffering... existing through) the hallmarks of his age and life. The last stroke he had was Friday night at 4am. I'm praying there isn't one while I'm here... That would freak me out. He still remembers me well, and the glimmers of his absurd, crude and embarrassing humour still sneak through the fading eyes and toothless grin.

The toothless grin is his favorite prop.

I'm here till Tuesday. It won't feel like long enough, but I'll be itching to leave at the same time. Did I mention they cancelled the cable???

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