November 16, 2017

Harumafuji's RGE

Resume-generating event, that is.

I've always wondered if his ability to build mass and his bad complexion were the result of steroid use. His recent behavior would tend to indicate this.

I am frustrated by the bad press that will follow, just as sumo is having a huge surge in popularity.

But it is what it is.


November 12, 2017

Sweet Potatoes

We have this room in the big brown box that we call the the aku room. The reference here is that we once went to see Kupaoa play at the Windward Mall and the stage there is under a giant skylight. Kellen remarked that it was hot enough on that stage to dry aku (skipjack tuna). Ever since that comment, we've dubbed our blazing and pointless sunroom the aku room. We only use it to dry our laundry, although I sometimes fantasize about actually using it to dry aku or make hoshigaki (dried persimmon).

Anyhoo, one of the things I sometimes try to do in there is start plants. And when a sweet potato we had in the kitchen began to sprout leaves, mrguy planted that potato in some potting soil. It languished out there for months, and then he potted it in a planter on the deck. Its leaves have been flourishing ever since, and I protect it from the mama when she's out there because I know she wants to prune the leaves. I haven't known what was going on underneath the soil, though. This whole sweet potato thing is new to us. 

This morning I went out to get some herbs and curiosity got the better of me. I took a moment to rootle around in the dirt, when up came a teensy sweet potato! About as thick as my ring finger. We will give this little friend a place of honor in our Thanksgiving dinner.


November 11, 2017

Texas

Last week bigsis and I took the mama to Texas. This is a trip we've tried to plan for years, but mom often threw up worry roadblocks. She worried that the weather might be bad, or that she'd have to host a dinner (the problem there is being the center of attention, not cost). Once we picked a date but then bigsis broke her back. Recently, after hearing that the mama's cousin was having some health problems I decided that it was time to go. I picked the nearest date prior to the holidays and charged ahead.

At first this was going to be a mama / baby trip. Then I realized that I was crazy to think I could do it on my own. So I invited bigsis, who was good company and a big help, especially with mama strategy.

On travel day we woke the mama up at 5am for the 7am shuttle pickup. We brought a cane and walker, used Sky Cap for the first time, had a wheelchair escort. A flight, a 2 1/2 hour drive, and by 8pm we were in the boosum of the family in Wichita Falls, home of my mom's first cousin. Most of our waking hours for the next 5 days was spent with mom's cousin and his wife, two of their daughters, a daughter-in-law and a boyfriend. We talked incessantly. We looked at graveyards, we opened a box of photos that nobody had seen for years. And each of our days was bracketed by the process of getting the mama ready for the day and ready for bed (about an hour on each end, depending). Mom's cognition was spotty, but when she was there she was there, and the cousins loved their visit. So did we.

On Saturday we saw a local production of a musical about Wichita Falls playing at a theater in the old downtown. On our way there, we did a tour of some local cemeteries. I'd planned ahead and downloaded cemetery spreadsheets. Little did we know that we'd need them because of hidden cemetery location markers. Can't believe I was running around a cemetery with a laptop, but it worked. We were looking for section O, but couldn't find it until we started using the spreadsheet to search for unusual names and trying to triangulate where we were. One cousin has an unusual knack for finding gravestones, so we each used our strengths to find what we needed. We did this in both city and county cemeteries and were pretty successful. Found our great-great grandfather's grave, and his first wife's. The stone itself answered our question of how she died (in childbirth). One cousin went back while we were at the play and took a rubbing. We also made a detour to see the Littlest Skyscraper.



Saturday evening our cousins invited other cousins and half-cousins over. The half cousins were from our great-grandfather's first marriage. Our hosts put on a huge spread for us, hired help for the evening. It was a great time. Eventually someone brought out the picture with Teddy Roosevelt, Quanah Parker and our uncle.

Sunday drove out to the cemetery in Charlie, then the country club and then we took a huge nap. 





The spread at the country club was great. Yes, there was prime rib, but my real interest was the two kinds of okra (fried, pickled). Did I mention that our hosts had buttermilk in the fridge? Perfect people. After the nap we had a visit from a daughter and her boyfriend and the daughter-in-law. We ate Bluebell ice cream. Have the coffee flavor. It's tremendous.

Monday we drove around the city and heard about every person who lives in every house. I now know that if I lived there everybody would know my business because I now know theirs ;) Sis and I slipped out for a few hours to go to the library (they have an amazing genealogy section) and visit the grocery store for a few minutes. I loved the New Age Beverages sign, Sugary Sam sweet potatoes and Best Maid pickled okra.



Then we had a big steak dinner under the warm gaze of taxidermed steer.

The trip back was insane. Mom had fallen out of bed and was convinced we were taking her to the hospital. It took an hour and half to get her out of the house. She complained about everything, including the divider between first class and economy "this displeases me," she said while flapping it around. On the other hand she found great delight in making French toast out of toast and syrup at IHop. We asked a great deal of her, considering her age and Alzheimers. All in all, it was an amazing trip. I can't wait to see our cousins again.


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