Thursday (Letter to Family of 23 March 2017)

This is a letter I wrote to my family on 23 March 2017.

Today was another full day and I’ve not had a moment to myself except for that time during my brief walk. Hope you understand my delay in response.

He was in a lot of pain getting up this morning, but eventually his back settled down a little and he was able to shower and dress.

We began after breakfast and meds by going to Carrefour, a supermarket sort of like Walmart, with a Santander bank up front. Patrick was able to complete his change of address and with his help I was finally able to exchange dollars for euros. While he rested in the little cafe area I went into the market and bought some wine, napkins, paper towels, plantanos de las Canarias, and coffee. After leaving the market we went to the Post Office where we mailed (to me) a box of his old letters and such so that they can be eventually scanned and shared with the rest of the family, or at least those items of interest.

Afterwards we decided on lunch at Basmate, which a sister loves very much. (I sent her a picture of the silverware with the question “donde estamos?” but she didn’t reply!) Patrick has been a steady patron for many years and I’ve been there several times, always finding the food delicious.

On the way home we stopped at another bank, Sa Nostre, where he withdrew a bit of money and made a phone call to see about picking up his violin from a luthier that has been trying to sell it for the last year or so. Unfortunately we couldn’t reach the guy, who was taking his lunch in a noisy bar such that Patrick couldn’t hear.

At this point he was pretty wiped out so we returned to the apartment for naps and a bit of relief from the back pain. We had a brief conversation with Gretchen before she left for work, but it’s a bit expensive so we kept it short.

In the evening Ivonne and her daughter Aina came over for a while. I signed some documents of responsibility for this place (it’s kind of an assisted living facility) and walked over to the pharmacy to get some supplies for Patrick, whose back was really giving him fits again.

After dropping off Aina with her (Aina’s) father, Ivonne returned and we enjoyed a light dinner of some kind of thinly sliced beef with a bit of greens and cheese, on toast. Then we stayed up for a couple of hours talking (and recording) about life, music, books, friends, and love.

As the night wore on and it was time to go to bed, he was a bit wobbly getting out of the chair. He probably sat too long, but until getting up he didn’t seem too uncomfortable so we took advantage of the time for extensive conversation.

Now it is well after midnight and I need to grade some exams and homework. If he is feeling up to it tomorrow, we may go to Valldemossa to fix another change of address problem with another bank, but otherwise we’ll just hang out and continue to chat, record, think, and appreciate the time we have together.

There are times when I am fearful the pain will overwhelm him and take him down, but I consciously force myself to displace those thoughts with images of a quickly recovered, healthy father who enjoys writing and cooking again. Despite these past few days, which he said has been a horrible week, I am pleased to see that he has recovered a bit of appetite, which is muy importante to recovery.

I am here another two days. I hope they are as satisfying, comforting, and pleasant as these others, for him and me both.

John

P.S. Now it’s almost 1:00 AM and the rain has just begun. It is lovely, glistening in the streetlights.

One Reply to “Thursday (Letter to Family of 23 March 2017)”

  1. The next morning I received a note from Donna asking me to give him a hug. I replied:

    “Thanks. Will give him that hug! ”

    “Patrick had a very hard day today, mostly sleeping but sometimes wanting to throw up, but not successful. He has taken the heavy painkiller and is trying again to sleep. I asked if I should try to extend my visit but he said no. “

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