Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Living In A Small Town

it's 9:00 a.m. in the holy city of zefat. the kids left with sahar and i have my morning free. i did the laundry yesterday. we are enjoying warm and sunny weather. the houses remain cold and our bones creak but outside it's gorgeous and cozy.

last week we had a family crisis. gal's grandmother lost her 3 year battle with the dreaded big 'C' disease. we don't say the name of the disease. the entire family camped out for the entire week at the house in hadera. i stayed in zefat with sahar on the day of the funeral. the next day i journeyed to hadera to pay a shiva call. gal decided to spend the week there with sahar.

it is hard to believe that just one month ago we were all at a family simcha together in zicron yakov. i pushed myself to go to the wedding because i had a gut feeling that safta esther wouldn't be with us much longer. she was an incredible lady, matriarch of a large and very close family. she will be sorely missed.

i spent all of friday doing a pessach cleaning of the kids' apartment. zvi left for shabbat to be with the family and i spent shabbat here, alone. we both figured that gal would want to come back to a clean apartment after such an ordeal. i did my best to comply. i had expected her to give birth in hadera and return with my new granddaughter. no such luck! the wait is still on, big time.

the mailman just had a special delivery for my neighbor. i knew that no one was home next store so i told him that i would sign for it. it is really funny. he knew my family name and remembered the address and building where i once lived, about 11 years ago. he even remembered the floor and on which side of the hall i was situated. talk about your good memory!

some people might condiser him to have the makings of a stalker but i felt very touched. sometimes, living in a small town has its benefits. i won't go into the down side right now. i'm feeling too warm and fuzzy. i just got a look at myself in the mirror. scary!! for starters, i'm wearing a huge forest green fleece robe over black tights and fuzzy slippers. i'm also wearing a teal blue ski hat with a pom pom on the top of my head. i said i was feeling cozy, remember.

i got a part time job caring for a 20 year old girl who is a high functioning austistic. she comes over every afternoon at around 4:00 p.m. and we chat and play games. i bake muffins every day for a treat and i cook dinner for her ,too. it is very demanding. she loves attention and loves to talk. she also loves to eat. we listen to music and she beats me at the game 'set'. it is the weirdest card game ever.

i keep saying that the game should be called 'not a set' or 'unsettling' because it really requires thinking out of the box. a set can be three cards that are totally different and have no commonality, whatsoever. it blows my mind but it does help pass the time. she stays for 4 hours and i find myself totally exhausted afterwards. my grandson doesn't especially warm up to her or vice versa. yesterday, he joined us at dinner time and requested toast and cottage cheese with a side order of canned corn.

i decided that we should take a long walk. i was feeling very headachey. my sinuses were all blocked up. i had fallen off the diet wagon and had binged for a couple of days. being outside, was much more comfortable for me. we walked around the neighborhood for about an hour. i was instructed to encourage her to sit and read in silence for a 45 minute period. i willingly enforced it. it really helped me. listening to someone 'blebble on', as my mom used to call it, for 4 hours is a harsh and grueling task.

i have only met with this young lady three times. i don't know if i'll be able to make it through an entire month. i'm already out of food ideas. i am not used to cooking on a daily basis. i'm used to eating tuna and yogurt and nuts. i can't afford to serve her this. last night i served her an onion omelette, corn and mashed potatoes. i sliced up a tomato and green pepper into rings. she had a hard time with the concept. she liked her salad all cut up into small pieces. i handed her the knife and cutting board and told her to knock herself out.

i still have some corn mufins left over so i won't have to bake today. i might make her french toast for supper. i am trying to be economical here. i am not getting a lot of money for this gig. at this point, any amount will help pay the fuel bill.

i might have her make tahina and sesame cookies for a project today. if it's nice outside, i'll make her go for a walk again. last week, we went to town for a shopping outing. i bought more baby clothes and she bought a favorite game. it was a bit of a strain having someone with me when i shop.

so far, it's working out. i figure that no matter where i might work, that it will be hard. i'm used to being a caregiver and a babysitter. this way, i don't need to travel or even, leave my house. it isn't easy giving up my afternoons like this, but i really have no other choice. i don't seem to be able to get weekday rentals now. most people want to be downtown in the old city or artist colony these days.

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