Log in

No account? Create an account
old gm building
Bartleby the Scrivener vegan27
Previous Entry Share Next Entry
the *other* goings-on
I haven't written about anything on LJ for the last month except for Bob's death, which has been all-consuming for the last month. But the funeral finally occurred on the 22nd, and it has definitely helped me get on with everything else. Bob's death was just over one month ago, and I can finally see that that shock and depression are actually starting to recede.

While coping with that, my mom and I have been dealing with problems ranging from petty to major, the biggest being the house that Bob was renting from my mom. Bob evidently had a crippling, irrational fear of letting my mom know anything was wrong with the house. We will never know why he hid all of these problems instead of telling my mom, who would have been glad to have any of them fixed. There is a leak in the roof which caused part of the drywall to fall off of the ceiling in one bedroom. He put down a tarp and a garbage can to collect rainwater instead of just letting my mom know that there was a leak in the roof. A part for the boiler was broken and only half the house was being properly heated (Bob used space heaters to heat the other half). There are many other minor things broken or in need of maintenance (a broken doorknob here, a leaky water heater there...).

One major problem was main sewer pipe, which was completely blocked. I don't know if this was an ongoing problem or if Bob was flushing things down the toilet he didn't want anyone to find right before he died. The first sewer cleaning place that came over could not get past a blockage 60 feet down, and the guy believed we needed a $3,500 repair that involved digging up the back yard. A second company came and very valiantly battled the blockages, using multiple machines and snaking from three different locations. Amazingly, they were successful. But it was a pretty dark moment, going through Bob's things, throwing away unpaid bill after unpaid bill while the whole house stank of the sewerage backing up into the family room.

Another house-related problem is all of the STUFF Bob left behind. Soon after Bob died, cecile468 and saragene very generously came over to help me sort through and bag up all of Bob's clothes to donate. They also helped with other cleaning and organizing. We donated between 25-30 garbage bags full of clothes, and threw away at *least* ten bags of garbage. The clothes did not fit in my car, so saragene's dad helped me transport them with his truck.

Since then, my mom, Sarah and I have been working just to clean, organize, and consolidate the knickknacks Bob collected so that we can prepare for an estate sale or something. It's even more work than it sounds like.

I want to touch an ornament and say, "OZ!", but no one would get the reference.

* * * * *

In the meantime, I finally got Frieda (Bob's turtle, who is now my turtle) checked out at Parkway Small Animal and Exotics, the best local place that sees reptiles. I went on Valentine's Day, since Sarah worked and we would be celebrating our anniversary two days later anyway. The vet said that Frieda looked slightly dehydrated, but that she looked like she has been well cared for throughout her life. They gave me antibiotics that I have to inject into her, which I've been making Sarah do. They also gave me a lot of information on caring for box turtles.

On our one-year anniversary, Sarah and I sort of recreated our first date--we hung out at the DIA, had dinner at Seva, and then *tried* to go to Cece's, except we forgot they close early on Sundays. It's been a very happy year with Sarah, and all of the support she has given me and my mom in this last month has made me love her even more. She is exactly the smart, strong and capable woman I had wanted to be with long before I met her.

* * * * *

A week ago Wednesday I ran out of gas while driving for the first time in my life. I was daring my low fuel light to come on, but it never did. While making a Michigan left on Warren Avenue, I thought I lost my power steering, but then I realized what was actually happening right around the time that I stopped moving. A man ran out of the University Foods parking lot and helped me push my car to safety. A woman stopped her car and offered to drive me to a gas station, but luckily the Warren/Trumbull gas station was close by and I just walked. People are nice.

Late on the evening of the following day, Sarah messaged me after midnight to let me know that she was stranded on the freeway. She had blown out a tire at a pothole and put on her spare on her way to a show in Ann Arbor, but on her way back the spare disintegrated. She has roadside assistance through her insurance company, but no tow trucks wanted to pick her up. I realized that she and I drive the same model of car, and that I could just bring my spare to her. On my way over to help her, I HIT A POTHOLE TWO AND A HALF BLOCKS FROM MY HOUSE AND BLEW OUT ONE OF **MY** TIRES. It was too bizarre to believe. My tire blew out right in front of the auto place I go to anyway, so I parked my car there and walked home.

I needed someone to drive me to deliver my spare tire to Sarah, but it was 1am on a weekday. I went on Facebook to plead for help, and I was very lucky that hartofdetroit saw my post and answered. She told me to call a20sidedninja (her boyfriend, for those of you who don't know these LJ names--also, they both live in Corktown). He let me borrow his Prius, and even drove it to my house. I dropped him off at his house, picked up my spare tire, and very carefully drove to meet Sarah.

By the time I was on the road, a tow truck managed to remove Sarah's car from the freeway entrance ramp and drop her off at a gas station, but they would not tow her further for some reason. But we got my tire onto her car, inflated it to the correct PSI, and she was able to get to Birmingham. I really don't know what we would have done if hartofdetroit and a20sidedninja hadn't helped us out. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

On Friday morning my car tire hadn't been repaired by the time I had to pick up two Airbnb guests--sisters from Austria--from the airport at 9am. a20sidedninja had the day off and told me the day before I could use his car for that purpose. I had no idea what these young ladies looked like, since there was no photo in the Airbnb profile. But from across the luggage claim area I recognized them pretty easily. I think there is a direct relationship between the likelihood that someone is European and the size of their backpack. I swear to God, it's a thing. They're also very tall, both easily over six feet. I've spent the last week trying not to use the word "snoo-snoo" in a sentence.

* * * * *

At last, Saturday was the day of the funeral. Instead of having a visitation in a funeral home, we just had a memorial luncheon at Steve's Back Room in St. Clair Shores. Bob had eaten there and loved falafel, and the owner's sister was one of Bob's clients. The owner (somehow named Charlie and not Steve) recognized Bob's photos. The restaurant had a private side room that was perfect for what we needed. Sarah came early and set up flowers that she ordered for the occasion.

drevincore, who as you know works in the funeral business, was a huge help throughout this ordeal in offering advice, loaning a nice wooden urn for the service, and coming to help direct the event. He also recommended the funeral celebrant who I hired to talk at the service. She did a good job preparing for the service, talking to Bob's friends in the weeks leading up to the service, and spending over two hours at my mom's house talking to us about Bob and getting to know who he was. After that Protestant minister made Joel's funeral awkward, my mom and I wanted to be sure to find someone who could deliver a secular, humanistic service, and drevincore got us in touch with someone who did a fine job.

Part of the reason we went with a luncheon was because it seemed like a less complicated and more economical alternative to having a funeral home visitation, but now I wonder if I was wrong. Twenty-five people come to the luncheon, but I think more people would have come to a regular visitation and service, especially if they didn't feel that they were "close" enough to attend an event like this. I'm probably over-thinking it. Bob's closest friends and oldest clients were there, and it seemed to be exactly what everyone there needed. Personally, I've felt an extreme sense of relief now that the memorial is over.

Life can be weird. Between the restaurant's private room and the main entrance, a girl scout had a table set up and was selling cookies, even though most of the people in the restaurant were attending a funeral. I'm not sure how well she did. I think that Bob would have found that funny.

It's funny that what you love about me is what has driven so many men away. Apparently I'm not damsel-y enough for most guys. I love that you're a secure enough man to appreciate my strength.

Edited at 2014-02-28 04:32 am (UTC)

Those guys were probably just inexperienced. Having to constantly prop up a damsel gets old after awhile. The whole point of having a life partner is *mutual* support, right? I'm fine rescuing my damsel once in awhile, but it's much nicer having found someone who can carry themselves through daily life, and who can help me up when *I'm* the damsel. :)

Livejournal is weird. Where's the "like" button?? ;)