May 4, 2014

To Sir With Love

Lately the weekdays are rich, rich, rich with goings-on at the forklift factory. Amazing things happen, and then amazing things happen. I began the last day of the week with a handoff of archival materials from a favorite longtime employee who was leaving his job at the factory, and then attended a ceremony later in the day celebrating longtime employees who were not leaving.

Yesterday some workmates and I went to support a sweet bandmate at her stepfather's memorial service. It was without a doubt the best funeral I've been to, and I've been to many. The ministers actually knew him, so it wasn't generic. The room was full of laughter and stories of all kinds. Another sweet bandmate ROCKED Ave Maria. Little did I know that when she lived in Ohio she "did the funeral circuit" as she put it.

On Friday my bandmate showed me the chords to To Sir With Love. This is the song she felt best described her relationship with her stepdad. I volunteered to help her play it at the reception, so after the service a bunch of us sat on a picnic bench and practiced. It didn't really work out, but playing uke was a nice moment of calm for our friend before she had to rejoin the reception.

I had been very early to the service, by the way. An estate sale sign called out to me and I pulled a quick left to follow it. There wasn't much at the sale, but there was a gigantic Christmas cactus on a cool modern table sitting in the middle of the driveway. I have a real soft spot for wizened Christmas cactus at estate sales. I dubbed this one "Grandpa". It was the old man's cactus. His daughter, who was super old herself, came up to me and started laughing about how her dad put rice hulls in the soil and how she'd never do that because it retains too much moisture. She'd been watering the cactus since November, when he died, and had taken some cuttings so she could have a piece of it with her. Her brother made the table, which was glass and welded iron tubing. How could I not buy this cactus?

Two grandsons wrestled Grandpa and his table into my car.

And now he's home. I still need to give him a haircut and wash the crud off his pot and rehab the table.

Along the same lines, last September I bought our neighbor Max and Bernice's Christmas cactus. It was half-dead in the kitchen. Someone had to do it.

And then there is this large epiphyte that I bought at another estate sale.

I'm an old softie.
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