Monday, December 12, 2016

December 12: December Grass, Last Night in the ER, My Father

The December grass on the island was blanched and sere, pale against the dusty boles of sycamores, noisy underfoot.  Behind me, the way I had come, rose the pasture belonging to Twilight, a horse of perpetually different color whose name was originally Midnight, and who one spring startled the neighborhood by becoming brown.  Far before me Tinker Mountain glinted and pitched in the sunlight . . .

Last week at this time, I could still see December grass in front of my house.  It wasn't blanched or sere, as Dillard describes above.  No, it was Christmas-tree green.  This autumn seemed like it was never going to end.  Warm nights followed warm days.  Stretches of 40-, sometimes 50-degree spells. 

However, it has been snowing off-and-on for the better part of a week now in the Upper Peninsula.  Green grass gone, replaced by swathes of white.  Yesterday, the snow began falling about mid-morning and didn't stop until well past midnight.

I spent a good portion of last night in the ER with my father.  We were sitting at the dinner table, finishing my daughter's birthday celebration, when my dad announced, "I suppose I should tell you that I fell last night on the steps and hit the back of my head."  He already has a broken arm from another spill he took about three weeks ago.  He has quickly gone from being fairly independent--still driving his own vehicle at 89 years of age--to being barely able to walk down the hall to the bathroom.

Getting my father to the ER was made more difficult by yesterday's fresh covering of snow.  He was terrified of his feet slipping out from underneath him.  Plus, he really didn't want to go, but I convinced him.  Well, actually, I bullied him.  My argument went something like this:  "Well, I can't force you to go get checked out, so, if you want to fucking die, I guess that's your choice."

After about three hours and a CAT scan, the doctor determined that he wasn't bleeding inside his skull and that he was a difficult old guy.  As we were wheeling him back out to the car, he said, "I told you nothing was wrong."  And, just like that, I felt like I was about five years old again.

So, my dad is recuperating at home and driving everybody crazy, which is normal for him. 

Saint Marty is feeling pretty tired this afternoon, which is normal for him.

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