what a day

My day started at a little after 1 am. I tried to keep as quiet as possible while I packed and showered and readied and flailed about in prep mode; I made salad for Jeff to put in wraps while I was gone; and finally at 5:45, just as promised Katie appeared with her two children and we roared off to the ferry.  I did not take any musical instruments, and given how little room there was in the car (Katie has a sizeable amount of mutual aid gear, rope, bungies & First Aid in the trunk) it was the right call.

We got a simply smashing view, as we closed the distance between us and Victoria, of the entitlement, skill-free behaviour and misunderstanding of how physics, especially inertia, works, thanks to our fellow Vancouver commuters. Seriously I don’t care that a recent survey found that Vancouver drivers were among the safest in Canada; Katie never cursed at anyone but she was left perplexed at a panoply of weirdass lane and speed changes in a most comical way.

Ryker, who as I perhaps have mentioned, farts like a much larger human, did himself JUST as we were supposed to get onto the ferry (it was a nail biter, since despite all Katie’s efforts we were ONE MINUTE LATE to get secured boarding, which is NOT going to happen on the way back) and there’s Katie, doing a thorough clean change while the loading starts, with the efficient and relaxed mien of someone who will not panic no matter how much her mother is encouraging her to. (I did not distinguish myself with my handwringing.)

Ryker doesn’t seem to consider coldness to be something to cry about. He is vigorous and happy even when he’s being changed at the ambient temperature of an April morning.

We stayed in the car for the crossing except I had to take Alex to the washroom once. If you’re a middle aged woman, hanging around the mens room door is not a fun place to be for five minutes, especially when part of the floor show is a pair of polished Instagram wannabes setting up shots of her midriff – and his I don’t know what – but they didn’t notice me gurning at them in the background so that was okay. I just told Alex about me making faces at them and we had a good laugh.

Ryker literally smiled the instant he saw pOp. Great moments in bein’ a grandma. My mother was cold with dread that he wouldn’t like her and of course that was the opposite of what happened. He scoped her out in seconds and then her arms got tired and she handed him back, a little dripping with happiness (and I’m like OH LOOK I’M ONE EIGHTH RESPONSIBLE FOR THAT CUTENESS the way I always insert myself into glory if I think I can get away with it.)

Garry and Dianne were here as well but I did not see them for their health and safety. I am sorry that our appearance put a spanner in their visit, but they’ll be back Wednesday.

I sold the SFF books for a reasonable price and met a simply lovely (masked) young man. Alex insisted on insinuating himself into the transaction and that was lovely too; always fun to show your SF drawings to people, right? So Michael found out about “Remain Indoors” my favourite of Alex’s drawings, which I brought with me to leave with the great grands. Transaction took place strictly outdoors, and I wrapped the books in a strip of cloth with busty ladies of classic SF on it and Michael immediately started figuring out where to stick it in his apartment, so that was both profitable and fun.

Alex has a Five Nights with Freddie plushie. It’s worth a young fortune by all accounts so he wrote his name on its ass and the idea that El Plusho got Alex’s name tattooed on his ass is very funny to me.

Alex is a big brother. He takes his responsibilities in his family extremely seriously and helps in material and emotional ways, all the time, without fanfare. I knew when I saw the picture of him holding baby Leo (Katie’s best friends second child – there are some names in our extended family that are just there! lol hope you’re reading this) that he would be a good big brother if he got the chance, but I really didn’t expect to be this impressed. He is completely attuned to his little brother’s state of being and he’s an enormous and consistent help to his mother.

And Ryker adores him. His smiles and wiggles as his brother holds, entertains and loves on him (and locates his soother) are balm for my wounded soul.

Today, ONTIE MARY oh lord. Haven’t seen her in at least three years, and we’ve been corresponding irregularly but amusingly (her last two letters had me slumped over the kitchen table, howling with laughter) so it will be most diverting to see her emerge from a taxi, fling books at her sister, fling something, I will be amused and amazed to see what, but probably books, at me, and then flee back into the taxi to Esquimalt.

Today, after Mary, there will be a trip to various countryside establishments for tea, and possibly at Alex’s request, a trip to the Butterfly House, and then home.

I am so happy. Nothing lasts, but I wrote it down, and I can go back to this whenever I like and remember something perfect and family and sweet, even as the world I grew up in dissolves in the acid of war and climate change. And we didn’t take any pictures, but neither did our ancestors, and they got along on their memories just fine.




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Born when atmospheric carbon was 316 PPM. Settled on MST country since 1997. Parent, grandparent.

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