{ Sunday, November 24, 2002 }

The rest of yesterday

I crashed out on the office couch for an hour. Then we rode over to USC and I slept in her backseat while she went jogging. Apparently Shelly is training for an unspecified triathalon. She just wants to be ready when she finds one to do.

We got back to her place and I made dinner. Macaroni and cheese. Except I just made the noodles and then Shelly finished it. She put nutritional yeast flakes in it. I tried really hard to eat it (cause now it was dinner and good for me), but I couldn't. It was gross to me. I had some salad.

I really like my sister's apartment. It's fairly large and in a nice enough building... it's nicer than the last two places I lived. Well, the inside of this place is comparable to the inside of the last apartment. It's odd though that my sister's apartment feels more like somewhere I belong than my house. It's largely the stuff. My sister and I grew up in a house where "buying it new at the store" was reserved only for special occasions. If someone gave my mother a dish with a piece of plastic wrap on it, my mother would wash and reuse the plastic wrap. Because, you see, she couldn't figure out what to do with it. It wasn't recyclable, it wasn't compostable, it wasn't biodegradable, so obviously it must be reusable. Nothing disposable came to our house. And if it did, it got washed and reused.

So, my sister's apartment is a testament to this variety of simple living. And also to the "We'll just make this work. There look, it's fine. Just don't push on that side." mentality that comes with not being wired to consume. So, her furniture has stories and history. Her stuff has a personal touch. And she shares that strange taste in decorating that even Mom and Dad have in common. So, this place feels like a home to me to some degree more so than my own. I think the comparable difference is just that there's stuff on the tables here. Seriously, at my house, if you're not using it right this second, expect to be told to put it away. For me that means, it'll get set on the stairs. Until I drag it back into the living room. Meanwhile, this place has a comfortable level of "someone is alive in here" going on. No museum-quality clean here.

We spent a long time last night talking about some strange things. Like "Some people buy jelly at the store.". Apparently Shelly has missed this phenomenon entirely. Mom cans a lot of jelly in a year. And Shelly's been getting it mailed to her. So, I told her about how some people buy so much stuff that they actually buy jelly at the store. Frozen meals, she understands. Jelly? No.

And other random things like that. Those silly little things that I knew she'd relate to because we have very similiar world-views. There probably aren't all that many people out there who could manage to laugh over "buys jelly at the store".

Last night after dinner, we went to the beach. We drank beer and walked along the beach. My sister's friends stroll with purpose. I mean, I understand walking that fast if you have a destination in mind, but these people were power walking along the beach with beer. Shelly and I talked about it and we think it might've been my first actual connection with the Pacific Ocean.

And I learned some stuff about Shelly and my differing attitudes about our parents. She remembers a lot more bad things about Dad than I do. And I remember a lot more personal things about Mom than she does. Like, we were talking about her job and she said something about dealing with the fact that "somedays" she feels like she's making a difference. About how her upbringing taught her that you have to wait for people to want to get help. I thought she meant, living with Mom the social worker. She meant, dealing with Dad. Yeah, so over a couple of beers last night I gained a lot of insight into my sister's problems with our father. And also into the fact that she still hasn't learned to see our mother as a person and not just a parent.

I crashed out at two am local time. Having been awake for twenty-four hours ("That's not true! You took a couple of naps!" is what Shelly would say to that.) I crashed out in my sleeping bag on the floor of my sister's room.

And now I think I have dealt with the jet lag. I slept til I woke up and I woke up at the same time on the clock I normally get up at in Lexington. So, three hours off my body's internal clock of when I would wake up.

I have no idea what's in store for today. I know I was told last night, but I've already forgotten.

posted by mary ann 2:02 PM