Saturday, September 28, 2019
The Butterfly's Secret
Yesterday morning, in between buying Mom new socks and visiting her for lunch, I took a break and went briefly to Alpine Groves Park, an old homestead and wilderness area in the small community of Switzerland. The butterfly garden there is always buzzing.
I found this orange gulf fritillary (above and top) making the scene...
...as well as this zebra longwing.
And I learned something interesting about the long-tailed skipper, which I showed you in yesterday's post. It seems like a relatively drab brown butterfly -- until you look at its body. You can see a hint of its coloring in the photo above. The body and head are bright, iridescent blue. I've been seeing these butterflies practically my whole life but I had no idea they were hiding blue lingerie underneath their brown overcoats.
When I picked up Mom's new socks yesterday, I also bought Target gift cards for the two beauticians who work in the salon at her retirement community. They still deserve more -- possibly a humanitarian Nobel Prize -- after Mom's extreme mani/pedi experience. But gift cards are the best I can do.
Mom and I ate lunch in the small dining room in her unit. (I offered to take her to the main cafeteria, where she'd been eating before her move, but she said no -- which I take as another sign that she's settled.) To my surprise we sang the national anthem and recited the pledge of allegiance before the meal. I don't know what the heck that was about, unless it's simply a "memory exercise" meant to benefit the patients. Why do I have to declare my allegiance to the United States before I'm permitted to eat my roast beef au jus and peach cobbler? Then they put on some Frank Sinatra, and I was fine with that. As I told Mom, "Frank Sinatra makes everything better!"
As you can imagine, eating at a table in the memory unit is a strange experience. People don't say much, and when they do, it often doesn't quite make sense. Conversation is limited, to say the least!
Last night, my stepsister and her husband drove up from Tampa and visited. We went back to our favorite riverfront restaurant...
...and once again I had the crab cakes. I'm in a Florida rut!
Now, my work here is done, at least for the time being. I'm taking to the air at 2:40 p.m. this afternoon -- back to Atlanta and then on to London, where I'll arrive tomorrow morning. Mom is settled and seems happy, and thank goodness for that. We'll visit her once more this morning after breakfast.
I just have to try to get everything back in my suitcase. I'm not taking much additional stuff home -- just two boxes of family slide photos, a tablecloth I brought Mom years ago from Madagascar, and a pig-shaped wooden cutting board she made at summer camp as a girl. (Even though another cutting board is the last thing we need.) You know that expression, "When pigs fly!" Well, this one will be.
I can't wait to get back to sleeping in my own bed!