Sunday, August 28, 2016

... and Life Is Good

Lazy bones, sleepin’ in the sun
how you gonna get your day’s work done?
Never get your day’s work done
sleepin’ in the noonday sun.

Lazy bones, sleepin’ in the shade
how you gonna get your livin’ made?
Never get your livin’ made
sleepin’ in the evenin’ shade.

Welcome! Sunday morning, age to age shall say:

Yesterday after the service for Ray we came home, poured a glass of red, cab it was, last of a bottle of Chateau St. Michelle. Linda dug out of my right ear with tweezers, the little soft plastic “dome” that had slipped off of my hearing aid, I was always concerned that might happen. I transposed funeral homily to +Time, posted, linked on FB, and tried a nap. Nap didn’t work, mind still twirling.

Five years ago last month, my mother died, July 17, 2011, a rainy Sunday morning. That afternoon after making my calls and agreeing with my brother and sister to postpone mama’s service for two weeks until all the nieces and nephews got back from vacation, I got melancholy for fried mullet, which'd been a supper staple in my growing up years, fried mullet and grits. So that evening we went to - - it’s "Sue’s on 390" now, at the time it was something else before it was J.Michael's - - we each had a mullet platter, stopped by the Bay at sunset and I snapped some shots. One of them is the screen pic on my oldest MacBook, picture of sunset on the last day I shared life on earth with my mother. Mullet helped. Sunset did not.

Yhis past Monday evening the sadness was so excruciating and building that we went three blocks up Beck Avenue to Enzo’s for pizza and a beer. I had a small thin crust with double anchovies and a Stella, Linda a small supreme and ice water, and we shared the iceberg lettuce with blue cheese dressing. 

Been to Enzo's quite a few times, first time was January 2015, right after we moved to 7H, and knowing they went there, I asked the waitress if she knew Ray Wishart. Oh sure, she said, Ray and Diane close the place down every — I think she said Saturday — night. So wherever Ray goes for pizza, I go for pizza. First it was the Mellow Mushroom at PCB, then Enzo’s. He had a pizza place in NYC too. Do they have pizza in heaven? Pizza and beer? I certainly hope so. What kind of beer? Anchovies?

Anyway, after yesterday morning’s service at St. Andrew’s the downers ignited, and later the day grew the worse it got. (This is not a diary nor a journal, it's my own personal blog, where I muse what I DWP.) Remembering the day mama died, I suggested we go out to Lynn Haven and have mullet at Crawdads. Linda driving, me snapping a selfie. Light blue shirt with his company insignia that Joe and Patty gave me years ago, that cap says Apalachicola, I bought it there a few months ago. The extra bit of face below my bottom lip on my right side is scar tissue from my careless trip and fall at church two years ago. And I see the eyelids are drooping again. 

Whoever loves REAL old fashioned fried mullet, go to Crawdads. The mullet dinner is two whole mullet, and like it’s supposed to be, they leave the backbone in. You get two small sides, I get Cajun dishes. They do not serve Episcopal beverages, so ice water. We’ve been there several times and hope they’re there as long as Bubba is in 7H. I ate one of my mullet and the skin from Linda’s mullet. Mullet skin, fried, salty, oily and scrumptious.  

I also munched the crispy fish tails from all four mullet, been doing that nearly eight decades. In the go-box, waiting for me to eat breakfast, is my other whole mullet and half of one of Linda’s mullet, but it's late and I'm just heating the half. 

Who doesn't like mullet, I cannot help you. It reminds me: May or June 1984 I made an appointment and went in to my bishop's office downtown Harrisburg  PA and told him I was accepting a call to Trinity, Apalachicola. He exclaimed, "Apalachicola?!! I know it well. It's the end of the earth. There's nothing to do there, whatever will you do?" Dearly loved and a friend, my Pennsylvania bishop had once been Canon to the Ordinary of the Diocese of Florida in Jacksonville, and had visited Trinity Church many times. I said, "I'll eat oysters and mullet!" Charlie says, "And what will you do when you get tired of oysters and mullet?" At this there's no point in continuing the conversation, because he obviously is a Yankee. You don't get tired of oysters and mullet.

Anyway, like my memory supper that Sunday evening in 2011, this was a cheering meal, comfort food for a Panama City native - until we drove south on Ohio Avenue heading home and a restaurant has huge letters on their billboard, MR. WISHART, YOU WILL BE MISSED. And it all come back. Time, where are you when I need you? 

But then Joe called from Winston-Salem. His Volvo S-60 is going on 40k miles, so he browsed the Volvo showroom, looked at a red-orange S-60 and a white V-60 and decided to wait a year. Finished his Qatar airways project and is on something else now. Has a friend with a pilot license whom he goes up with now and then. Joe calls about once a week, usually when he's waiting in the carwash line, "Hi, Pop! It's your boy!" Cheering call last evening.

After Joe's phone visit I watched a Steven Spielberg movie, "Empire of the Sun." Though tense and the end is quite emotional, the movie is superb, moving. I loved it, and the music, and I finished last evening lifted up, on the way hopefully, with the rest of my life.

As I type I’ve got my earbuds in, a 3-hour music video on YouTube. Sunday has come as promised and here in 7H, as another of my caps proclaims, Life Is Good. 

it's just Bubba here, Adonai, standing on the promises

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