Best Laid Plans


Princess Rachella is just finishing up a whirlwind visit of the U.S. of A. In fact, she is in the air as I type this posting...soon to land at Chicago's O'Hare airport, an 8-hour lay-over before heading back to Kenya.

In a flurry of energy, she posted several entries on her blog about her mixed feelings as she returned to Cairo after a prolonged absence...like the second time in almost 4 years, a couple of years since that last time. (When I met her at the Carbondale Amtrak station and struggled to get her suitcases into the car, I thought maybe she had come home to stay. Damn...girl apparently never heard of "traveling light.")

I've posted one of her musings below and shall let you read it before offering "background"...

Notes From a Native Daughter


Wednesday, June 22, 2011

"Whod'a Thunk????" by Princess Rachella

If you'd told me nearly 4 years ago that one day my brother-in-law Ron and I would stand in the beautiful kitchen my sister Julie so lovingly redecorated and even pretend to smile, I'd have probably punched you in the snout.

Especially since in that same beautiful, sunlight-flooded kitchen, stuck to the refrigerator door, there is one of those magnetic noteboards bearing the fluid, lovely handwriting of my beloved sister declaring her everlasting love for Ron.

If ANYTHING was going to make me fall down on the ground crying and screaming and snorfling snot bubbles during my return trip home, it was gonna be that. At one point, I thought about taking a picture. Then I thought about stealing it and having it laminated, but I knew that if ANYTHING would make Ron get on a plane to come to Nairobi to kick my natural ass, it would be that.

Surprisingly, my heart didn't burst during my time in Cairo. But it did remind me that even though Nelson Mandela is still my all time living hero, Ron has quickly assumed the Number 2 position for carrying on each day with all the potent reminders of the incredible life force who still swirls around us. I guess that's WHY he can keep going, because we both do feel Miss Winky is still with us.

Looks like we've made it!

Posted by Princess Rachella at 2:06 PM


Now...

...for the "rest of the story".


Bears repeating...

...best laid plans.

Upon returning to Cairo after the "Eviction of 2011", I engaged in my own flurry of energy and activity...cleaning my (mildly) flood-damaged basement in preparation of a rare visitor to my "cat cave".

After the "heavy lifting" (no, not Rachel's suitcases), it was time for the finishing touches...family pictures that I had put in my trunk when me and my 95-year-old mother evacuated to Marion, IL for a week. Upon our return, I had carried the bags of pictures back into the house and placed them on the floor by my bed pending cleaning.

Well, after (REALLY!) dusting the shelves and table tops, I went to retrieve the pictures.

Whereupon...

My mind flashed back to one of Rachel's postings (don't ask me which one!)

In that particular post, Rachel referred to "the pictures"...that adorned various surfaces at our house (including the two poster displays that we prepared for Julie's visitation.) The posting was not negative about the pictures, but it was pretty easy to read between the lines...that for a person out in the world trying to pull off the "life goes on" routine...a sudden reminder (EVERYWHERE you looked!) of what has been lost could be emotionally overwhelming.

So...

...I put the bags of "Julie pictures" under my bed...along with the poster displays (which even I avoid except for maybe special occasions.) I figured that if Rachel wanted to see pictures, she could always ask. (Oh, I did put pictures back in the bedroom...but not in the living room or downstairs.)

And...

...most certainly, I did NOT put any pictures in the kitchen! Oh, I know many people do...decorate their refrigerators with pictures of friends, relatives, kids. Julie and I were never ones to do that. For Julie, the kitchen was a place "work", to indulge her love of cooking. Pictures would quickly get dusty with flour, greasy from fried chicken!

Never even thought about the "magnetic noteboard...declaring...everlasting love." Hey...it's just part of the refrigerator! (Have to admit...I didn't even remember to "evacuate it". Rachel's right about "kicking ass". If the Flood of 2011 had washed away my house and taken that precious personal artifact with it, I would still be kicking my own to this day!!!)

Fortunately, it didn't happen.

And...

...in my heart of hearts, I never even worried about it. My kitchen has its own personal Guardian Angel. Archangel, even!!!


Okay, okay...I'm rambling. It's been a while...


A few final observations about Rachel's post:

So...

...as Rachel bides her time today at O'Hare, since she did not commit her heinous crime, she does not have to keep looking over her shoulder in anticipation of the wrath of Ron.

Instead, she can click the link above and accept the consolation prize.

Bon Voyage, Rachel!!!