Tonight the wind is howling and blowing like a hurricane. Unfortunately it gave me a Scorpions ear worm.
This afternoon while I was taking out the garbage (tomorrow is garbage day) a ladder almost fell on me. I’m fine. My garbage can is fine despite a huge ladder falling on it.
I worry about the birds out there from eagles and hawks, down to the tiny little humming birds. I worry about the squirrels in the trees. The squirrels have been jumping all over the house trying to get up into the attic, Nooooooooo, They’re cute but not in my walls.
It seems like a night for demons to come out but even they’re staying in bundled up in thick plaid shirts and keeping their tails underneath fuzzy throw blankets. OK, not all of the demons. Just the ones who don’t like their jobs and are looking for something else to do. One no longer has to be defined by the family they were born into.
The howling sound of the wind is what makes it seem like a living breathing demonic thing outside of my windows. In the morning I’ll check for downed branches. The streets will be littered with twigs, leaves, branches, and maybe even bits and pieces of roofs, witches, and stuff from blown over garbage, green waste, and recycle cans. I mention witches because, well, sometimes they fly. I don’t like them or deal with them, or even mention them much, but I’d hate to see what this wind might do to them. You know how it is when you become a parent – you start to worry about everyone.
My kids are in Southern California, about 425 miles south of here. They have to deal with the Santa Ana winds. Thank goodness it is not fire season right now. The fields are green and a little muddy. I hope it lasts for a while. In fact I bet the wind hasn’t even bothered the frogs in the seasonal creeks and ponds in my neighborhood.
So before the Internet goes out again I need to say a few words. Stay safe. Stay warm. Wear a mask. Be kind. Talk to your kids. Keep your dogs and cats inside at night. Don’t be a dick. Check in on those who are elderly, alone, or need extra help. And of course, no matter what the weather brings, kiss a Vampire. You’ll thank me for it later.
I sat listening to my brothers, two of them, singing Ring of Fire in a low slow sort way that sounded like it belonged in a horror movie. Andy is a professional singer. Val is a numbers guy. Together they create weird and wonderful music.
When I was small I’d envy the way they’d sing together, anywhere and everywhere.
“Her ex-husband showed up.”
“Had you met him before?” I had to ask.
“No. Never. He came in the house with Cameron, Shawna’s son, and started to bark at her about me. I wasn’t even in the room, but I could hear it from the bedroom. I wasn’t even quite awake yet, but it woke me up for sure. He was telling her that she was making a fool out of herself by seeking someone so much younger than herself. I was ready to go out and tell him that I’m 168-years old but honestly I wanted to see his justification.”
“So what happened?” Val asked.
“Shawna ripped him a new one. She reminded him that he’d left her for FeeFee. He reminded her that FeeFee’s real name was Ashley. No matter what her name, the woman was almost twenty years younger than Eric. That is the husband. Eric. Anyway Eric said that it had been different with Ashley. Shawna called him all kinds of names including a fucking self centered misogynistic bastard who spent most of his life thinking with his dick. He didn’t take too kindly to that.”
Andy picked up a cup. “Does anyone want more coffee?”
“Sure, I’ll make a French Press. Tell us what happened,” I said. Andy often starts stories and doesn’t finish them.
I went into the kitchen to make coffee. Val hearded Andy after me and sat him down at the kitchen table.
“How old is Shawna?” Val asked.
Andy continued his story. “Almost sixty. She turns sixty in a few months. She looks a lot younger. She’s stunning.”
“I have to agree with you. She is lovely,” said Val. “But you look thirty five on a bad day, twenty something on a good day.”
“What does that have to do with the price of tea in China? I love her.”
“It shouldn’t matter,” I said, “especially since her ex is the same age as her and with a woman who is, what, in her early forties now?” Shawna had told me how her husband had left her years before for a much younger woman who needed him.
I glanced out my window. The usual Friday morning leaf blower assault had begun at my neighbor’s house. The neighbor on the other side has a five hour leaf blower marathon every Thursday. I hate leaf blowers. Seriously, everyone hates Vampires. They should put their energy into hating leaf blowers.
“There is always someone using a leaf blower in this neighborhood,” said Val.
“I hate leaf blowers. I HATE them,” I said. “So, Andy, then what happened? Did you tell Eric that you’re a lot older than he is. He obviously doesn’t know you’re a Vampire.”
Andy smiled and flipped his hair behind his shoulder. “No. Obviously not. It’s none of his business. He wouldn’t believe it anyway. Let him think I’m thirty-five or whatever. Let him steam in his own juices. Let him be angry about a younger man being attracted to the woman he dumped. Let him be jealous that I have a relationship not only with Shawna but with his son Cameron as well.”
I looked at my tall long haired brother and knew he turned heads. I could imagine Eric having fits in his mind about this guy who was in love with the woman he discarded.
Val poured a cup of coffee. “How did it end up Andy?”
“Eric left. The only reason he’d been there was to drop off Cameron. He said something about me only being a few years older than Cameron and about Shawna having no shame. We all had a fine laugh about that one later on. Val, pour me a cup too.”
By our second cup of coffee (Vampires drink a lot of coffee) we’d moved on to other subjects. Val was glad he was single. I was glad I was happily married. Andy was in love with a middle aged woman who was still somewhat confused that she’d fall in love with a Vampire. Her son thought Andy was exceptionally cool. Andy is exceptionally cool.
I put two cups of coffee out on the back deck. As my brothers and I talked inside I could see the Ghosts, Nigel and Mary sitting down at the outdoor table and putting their hands around the mugs. They inhaled the coffee they could not drink, savoring the beautiful aroma.
I guess the moral of this story is that we all make choices. We also make choices on how to react to the consequences. Don’t be like Eric.
I worry about Andy, but then again, I worry about everyone. At least it gets my mind off of worrying about my kids. More coffee please.
~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman
Sorry I haven’t have many new posts lately, and I haven’t been reading other blogs or commenting much either. This past year sort of put me in a tail spin, but I’m flying out of it as fast as I can. On maybe a good note I have a new computer. But today, even today, was one of those one step forward, two steps back sort of days. I need to listen to Ring of Fire again. Stay safe. Wear a mask. Talk to your kids. Pet your cat. Hug your dog. Check in on those who might be alone or need extra help. Don’t be a dick. Be kind. Don’t post political crap on FaceBook. Kiss a Vampire. And yes I can see Folsom Prison from the end of my street. Thank you Johnny Cash. xoxox Juliette Kings
My brother Max is having not dreams, but memories of places and events that aren’t his.
At the same time he can feel others thinking about him. He is a receiver. So am I.
It is one of those odd things that we don’t tell anyone else about.
The memories are a mystery. We’ve compared notes and we can’t figure it out. Who sends us memories from places we’ve never been or memories of things we’ve never done.
The other types of thoughts are straight from a known source.
Max and I stood out on the deck the other night looking into the fog. “She is thinking about me right now. I haven’t seen her in years but she has been thinking about me a lot lately.”
I didn’t tell him to call her or drop by her house. It wasn’t the right time. It wasn’t his call to make. But when she thinks of him he knows it. He never wonders if she loves him or really even cares. It just is what it is. He is flattered and charmed if nothing else. That is it.
I told him about the bridge again. It was a large bridge that fell during rush hour 50 years ago. I wasn’t there but I remember it from the eyes of a young man who was in a blue car. He was in the water. A woman helped him out. His wife was frantically calling on the phone to see if anyone knew where he was. That is all I remember. I thought it might have been from a book or a movie, but the memory was like my own.
Max dreams of maps and lying as still as death on the bottom of the ocean. I dream of cars falling off of narrow mountain roads and big ugly fish.
We don’t talk much to others about our dreams and phantom thoughts and rogue memories.
I’m sure you have things like that too – another life built on fog and emotion and strange things that fly by like ghost ships or long forgotten songs.
No matter what it is always good to have someone to talk to, who doesn’t think you’re nuts.
Max left this morning before the sun came up. I will miss him, but he’ll know when I’m thinking about him.
I used those words today to describe an amazing friend who despite all odds, all, well everything shitty that can be put in front of someone, sees all of the beauty and joy that surrounds her.
We should all strive to go through our journey with such courtesy and grace.
My daughter sent me photos today of her lithop plants. Lithops are succulants. Some people call them living stones, or baby toes. When they bloom we are graced with daisy like flowers. When they reproduce they split, like boulders in a slow moving glacier, and new babies form from the middle.
We should all try to be like lithops. When we feel like we’re being split in too many directions. Just start something new and bloom. It sounds easy, but ask a lithop and I’m sure you’ll get a different answer. It isn’t easy but it is worth that huge breath of fresh air and peace of mind you’ll eventually get.
Never give up. Stay safe. Wear a mask. Be kind. Check your temper. Talk to your kids. Stay in touch with friends, especially those who might be alone or need extra help. And of course, kiss a Vampire. Seriously, you need to kiss a Vampire.
This year Thanksgiving will be small. Yes, even Vampires have holidays. Even Vampires have things to be thankful for.
The children, despite being adults, are going through a period of angst that they skipped when they were teens. Thank you Covid-19. Or should I thank all of the people who refused to take this thing seriously and said wearing masks had anything to do with their rights. Oh cut the crap. When Vampires start to complain about it then you know it is bad. When Vampires start to feel nervous and unsettled you know regular people are starting to become extra stupid.
So back to my kids. Only one will be here for Thanksgiving but that is alright. We’ll have some sort of Facetime or Zoom call. We’ll have good wine and a small gathering of four or five.
Sometimes I believe it comes down to this: Humans are the only monsters. The most dangerous disease they have is ignorance. There is a cure but those who have it are bound and determined to say it isn’t real.
Like my friend Randolpho says, “Anti vaxers and Covid deniers cut into our food supply.”
The fog finally arrived for the Thanksgiving season. Cold mornings mean a dog walk by the lake. It will be like going over the river and through the woods this morning but not to grandmother’s house. My dog is waiting. I must go. With any luck the walk will bring more positive thoughts…even Vampires need positive thoughts.