Missouri is thinking about becoming winter. Every day when I look out the kitchen window, a few more maple leaves are turning yellow. I had to take a rake to the driveway a couple afternoons ago. I’m a rake kind of guy. I never liked the noise and hubbub of power leaf blowers.
Maybe it’s because I never got good at using one. Mother, on the other hand, could keep a wave of leaves rolling down the hill like she just dared them to slow down.
Furnace one day; AC the next
It got down into the 50s the other night. Cool enough that the hall thermostat read 61 degrees. I threw three rice bags that Wife Lila had made for me into the microwave, then put one at my feet, one at my knees and one at my chest to make the bed toasty. The next morning, though, I gave in and set the furnace at 66 to take the chill out of the air.
Being Missouri, though, the temperature cracked 80 two days later, and I had to switch from furnace to AC to keep the house below 77 degrees.
I had gotten used to the silence
All of these seasonal changes mean it is what used to be Mother’s Birthday season. This is the second one without her. I had just gotten used to the silent house.
There are some odd creaks and groans: some of it comes from me when I crawl out of bed in the morning. Some of are familiar sounds like the board in the hallway floor I used to try to step around when I was sneaking in late. It still squeals on me, even though it’s been years since I had a curfew, and there’s nobody around to scold me.
Who is in the house?
I was in the basement the other night, though, when I heard what sounded like the scraping sound the kitchen chair would make when Mother would push it back. That was followed by a couple of sharp raps like the door opening, and footsteps on the stairs.
Mother? I thought?
Wife Lila? One is 1,100 miles away, and the other is much further away than that.
Then it dawned on me
Walnuts. The wind was throwing walnuts against the roof like they were golf balls.
That, or Mother wasn’t happy that I hadn’t mowed the lawn recently or chased the leaves down the hill.
What do the pictures have to do with this?
Absolutely nothing. I just like them.
Here are some stories about Mother.