Thursday, June 23, 2011

Home, Home On The Range

I will finally be home on Friday after being out of town for the last two weeks. Hotels are good for a few days at a time. I don't have to make my bed, leaving the towels on the bathroom floor is perfectly acceptable, and I can run the A/C nonstop. (We all know I don't leave the towels on the floor or my bed unmade, but I totally could if I wanted to.)

Two weeks of hotel life straight? That's torture. I can't run into the kitchen and pop a bowl of instant oatmeal in the microwave for breakfast. No, I have to actually get dressed to grab breakfast. And when I'm hungry or thirsty any other time of the day, I have to go purchase my food. And don't get me started about the unfortunate housekeeping call during a bathroom moment experience. Unfortunate is the only word for it.

What is waiting for me at home is no better.

While I was away, my area had a mini heat wave. This normally isn't such a problem, but given that I've been gone and had a friend watching my place, the heat was problematic - especially problematic for my Honeysuckle, my Cape Plumbago, and most everything else on my balcony. Apparently I needed to spell out that the plants must be watered. Foolish me, right? Good thing Nurse Betty went over to just take a look at everything for me. She single-handedly salvaged my Star Jasmine and possibly by Bougainvillea. My dearly coveted Gardenia tree? Toast. Literally.

So, part of the weekend will involve a trek to my other mecca - Lowe's. I will most likely have to spend a mint just to get my balcony back to it's pre-trip status. I was sick to my stomach when I heard that the plants had all died. On the other hand, if the Honeysuckle died, no more bees! Yay!

Also on tap for me when I get home - a verbose boy cat who tends to yell at me for leaving him for two weeks the moment I walk through the door. His whiny meows that go on for hours and expelled for 30 second durations are annoying. I just love getting bitched out for being a bad person. And I wonder why I want to get married? His meows are so long and disturbing, it's almost as if he's trying to have a conversation with me.

In my mind, this is how it goes:

"Why did you leave me?!?", he yells up at me. "My litter box is sub-standard. You are going to change it out right now, aren't you? And the fat one made a mess of my bathroom. Please clean it posthaste, lest I have to endure it another minute. Have you seen the bird? She's pulled out all her feathers. You left her, and it's killing her. Well, I'm going to lounge on the couch and watch you clean up this house. Oh, and don't forget the hairball I left you next to your bed. Merry Christmas." His Pepe Le Peu tail stands upright with the tip rocking back and forth as he saunters away to his perch on the couch. It's like the shark fin in Jaws - the scariest thing because it's all you can see, and you know it's coming to steal your happiness.

Yes, I know I've reached a whole new level of cat lady by giving my cats voices, but in this case, his punishing screams and look of distress up at me seem to say all of the above. He's such a prissy boy. I imagine he has a stately English accent and if he were human, he'd be wearing a smoking jacket and carrying a glass of brandy. His name is Izzy, which fits his fuzzy, long, silvery fur, but when he acts like such a priss, we call him Sir Izzeford the Third. (Say it with a proper English accent, and it makes the whole situation just pop!)

Once I finish getting the house back in order, I'll have the grand task of grocery shopping. My cupboards and fridge are bare because in preparation for my travel, we ate up all perishables. I love being able to go and stock up on all the fruits and veggies and dairy products and neatly arrange them in the fridge. Yes, this is where my bowl-stacker traits come out, but once I'm done and satisfied with the results, I can finally relax.

Then we get to Monday. I've been looking forward to this day for two weeks, and yet dreading it at the same time, much the same way one dreads an enema. As of 6:45 am on Monday, I will be on the treadmill warming up for my first day of physical training. Yes, I'm starting with a trainer to help me get myself back to where I was.

But, I'm scared. This trainer is eeeeevil. I know this, because Nurse Betty used to go to him. But, I figure this is a perfect setup. He can kick my ass three days a week, and I get to call him every name in the book. He has to stand there and take it, because I'm paying him to kick my ass and take my verbal rants like a good little boy.See? I'm a freakin' genius.

Better stock up on Ben Gay and Motrin now.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Check This!

Is it just me, or is the self-checkout line at the local grocery store an overwhelming experience?

I tried using the service a couple of months ago to purchase just a few items, and in the middle of scanning, it barks at me, "did you scan your club card?" No, biotch, I didn't. I was too busy scanning my merchandise like a good little consumer instead of waiting in your long-ass lines. Whatever happened to "three's a crowd"?

Princess is submersed in all things BOP Magazine related, and is oblivious to me talking back to the machine like she's a real person. I move on to scanning another item, and it barks at me again to scan my club card. Oh. My. Gosh. Would you just shut up about the effing card? I'll get to it! I scan another item and she says it again. In my head, I've now climbed atop the machine and am jumping up and down on it while ruefully giggling.

Back to reality...

Okay, let me quickly scan my club card, lest Little Miss Hypersensitive throw a widget because I was too busy passing my Wheaties over the scanner. How come I always get the surly self-checkout machines?

It makes me feel as if I need to be one step ahead of it or that I need to keep up with it. I begin to fumble while my anxiousness grows, and a line of people waiting to use the machine is growing behind me.

I move on to a jug of tea and place it right back in the basket without bagging it. You'd think I'd just murdered someone. "Please bag your item," she says.

"Please kiss my ass," is what I say.

If I wanted to, don't you think I would have bagged the item? I mean, I know what a bag is. It's that little plastic thing over to the side that I used to encapsulate the rest of my groceries. So, I place the jug next to the rest of the bags. I'm surprised she didn't break out a country-twanging "Oh no you di'in't!" on me. One of her three metaphorical heads is now swiveling around on her neck as she says this, too.

The gentle, but oh so off her hormone meds female voice says to me, "unexpected item in bagging area." In other words, "get your shit off that silver section there next to the rest of your bags, lady."

Only, I do nothing, and the voice keeps saying it...over, and over, and over... And intermittently, she tells me to bag my item. Oh my gosh, she's going to self-destruct if I don't do something!

But I don't know what to do, so I look around at all the angry faces behind me that are waiting to use the machine. One of the angry faced women yells out from the back of the line, "you have to hit the button on the screen that says you want to skip bagging!" And under her breath, I hear her say, "dumb ass".

I hit the button on the screen, but the voice keeps repeating "unexpected item in bagging area". Princess breaks away from Demi Lovato and Selena Gomez long enough to sense the danger, and then reaches over to the tea jug and removes it from the bagging area. Suddenly the voice stops. I say thank you to Princess and then look over at Angry Face with a smug expression and continue on with the scanning.

Okay, so I might've given her the middle-finger temple scratch, too. But I totally did it with the left hand so that Princess wouldn't see.

When I was finished, I select the pay button, only I can't figure out where to swipe my card. There's so many buttons and swipey areas that I'm overwhelmed. I feel like my grandma trying to use a computer or an ATM machine. The only thing is, I should know how to do this. I grew up with computers.

Princess, again sensing that her mom has forgotten how to use technology, takes my debit card, swipes it, enters my PIN, and presses the OK button. She takes the receipt, hands me the card and loads the cart up. In less than 30 seconds, she has us ready to go. As we walk out of the store, she looks up at me and says, "Mommy, you aren't allowed to use that machine anymore. From now on, I'll press the buttons."

I'm so awesome. I've skipped turning into my mother and went straight to turning into my grandma.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Fun With Irony

My all-time favorite scent is honeysuckle. I buy any and every honeysuckle-scented candle, lotion, wallflower and body spray that crosses my path. So when, last year, I stumbled upon a honeysuckle vine at OSH, I had to buy it! I mean, an entire vine devoted to making my balcony smell like heaven on earth? I'm so there.

By the by, while we're on that kick of listing my all time favorites, might I also mention that running away from bees and wasps is also my favorite?

Don't get ahead of me now.

This year has been its first opportunity to develop a solid amount of blooms. They are beautiful blooms, too. I've never seen anything so delicate and ornate. Look...

Exquisite, yes?

I think so, too. And I figured that with my new bistro set right next to it, I would be able to breathe in the heady aroma.

Did I mention that bees love honeysuckle blooms?

And that there's a ferocious, giant bumblebee who now lives to torture me?

Irony and I are no longer friends.