Settling In, Family Update, and Independence Celebrations

I am getting used to everything at my new job site.  I know the basics, but there are a few of the checks that my shift does once in a while that I have not had the opportunity to help with.  My co-workers are pretty good people, though a couple do not really talk unless something work related comes up.  This is mostly because I am not heavily involved in video games and a couple of the guys are.  That is fine.

I do get to do a fair amount of people watching still, though there might not be as many people to watch during the graveyard shift.  Most of the people I do see are drunk, homeless, or both.  We occasionally have to ask these people to leave the property.  Most of the time, they do so with little argument, which is good.  Otherwise, most nights are relatively quiet.

In family news:

My dad had his left hip replaced about three and a half weeks ago.  He is recovering well.  This recovery has disrupted family life, as one might imagine, but things are slowly returning to normal.  I believe Dad hopes to be able to return to work at least part-time by the end of the month.  He had to get approval from the doctor first, of course.

My grandparents and brothers came over for Independence Day festivities.  I had hoped to get at least six hours of sleep before joining in, but it was not meant to be.  I was woken up by family members’ movement through the house or the ringing of the either the home phone or Dad’s cell phone.  Mom and my brother, Martin, went to the store for some last minute items and had a few issues, so they called repeatedly while they were out.  I gave up when my youngest brother arrived a while later.  I do not think Nathan does it deliberately, but his voice carries through the house.

Grandma was in rare form.  She fixated repeatedly on Dad’s walker and wanted to know all about why Dad needed it and also what his hip was replaced with.  Nathan kept making stuff up about the former.  His favorite version involved Dad falling off a Harley.  Dad has never owned any motorcycle, but Grandma does not remember that.  At one point, Nathan and I jokingly disagreed about why Dad needed a hip replacement.  I suggested that he kicked someone and injured his leg.  Nathan replied that had come after the Harley mishap.

Grandma also asked about the cats, fretted about where she had put her purse, suggested they needed to check on their own kitties and feed them, and picked up specks of whatever she found on the carpet.  However, there was something new this time.  My brothers went out into the backyard to clean up the lower deck and the set the tables and chairs.  Dad was on the upper deck cooking the burgers and hotdogs.  Mom was going back and forth between the kitchen and backyard with condiments, chips, and other things.  I was in the living room keeping my grandparents company.  At one point, after seeing Mom walk in and out of the kitchen, Grandma suggested that since everyone was so busy maybe they should wander on home.  I commented that no one had eaten yet, and she seemed surprised that they were staying for food, until I reminded her that they had brought a salad for the occasion.

Mom came in around then and announced the food was ready.  It still took several minutes to get Grandma outside, because she had to fret about her purse and its location.  Then she had to decide whether or not to bring her sweater.  I am glad she decided not to, because she had wrapped her purse in her sweater and retrieving the sweater would have led to another round of fretting.  Then something else distracted her.  Once outside, Grandma got a tiny amount of food, and did not even finish all of it.  When someone noticed this, she claimed to have eaten not long before they left their house.  Later, someone wondered if she could actually remember back far enough to know if she indeed had eaten earlier in the day.  I expressed my doubts.  Mom said it was a defense mechanism.  Dinner was good, though conversation was interrupted by Grandma, who either fretted about Martin going inside to get her (and himself) a drink, or fretted about switching places with Nathan in order to get out of the sun, or interrupted the conversation with an odd question or concern (usually about her purse or their cats).

After my grandparents left, we played two games of cards.  Nathan and Mom both won a game.  Then I had to get ready for work.  Nathan left soon after for the same reason.  I shut my window to limit the amount of noise from the fireworks our neighborhood was firing off and bid my parents and Martin a good evening.  Later, I learned that two of my cats remained in my room during the evening, but the third (Cheddar) came out into the living room, curled up next to Dad, and refused to move.  One of my parents’ cats, Stealth was jumpy most of the evening due to all the fireworks being lit.  Poor kitties.

Traffic was surprisingly light, though I suspect most people were already in place for their fireworks enjoyment by the time I drove to work.  It was a fairly quiet night at work, though we did see several patrol cars fly by on their way to a report of a shooting a couple miles away.  My partner and I also talked about the marina fire that was started by someone setting off illegal fireworks near some boats that were dry-docked.  It made a mess of traffic later.

That is the latest.  It has been an interesting month or so at the new site.  I am enjoying it quite a bit.  Looking forward to learning more.

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About emeree

I am an Air Force veteran. I served as a Security Forces troop for nearly seven years and reached the rank of Staff Sergeant before separating in 2008. My tours of duty were in England and Oklahoma. I live in the Seattle area, which is where I grew up. I used my GI Bill and earned a degree from the University of Washington. I currently work in downtown Seattle and experience all the adventure that comes with that.
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