Sunday, September 2, 2012
I snagged the Grand Marnier and the Polish Buffalo Grass vodka while Mom was on the patio having a cigarette. I was 15 again as I rounded the corner from the pantry and saw her pushing herself up from her chair. Lowering the bottles, and using the kitchen island for cover, I laced the fingers of my right hand around the necks. By the time I heard the patio screen door behind me, I was out of sight, slinking up the steps.
My friend Suzanne is here for the weekend, and we wanted an after dinner drink. It's not that we wanted to avoid my mother's company. Suzanne has known my mother for years, and seems to enjoy my mother's stories as much as I do. We snuck off with our beverages of choice because my mom's two martinis do not need to be augmented by an after dinner drink. Conversation from her post liqueur would require subtitles.
And so I come back around to being the devious daughter.
The three of us stood around the kitchen island talking and laughing after I returned downstairs from placing the vodka and the Grand Marnier on the upstairs balcony. I needed the crystal snifters--which would be a dead giveaway if my mother saw me take them out of the cupboard. Like a couple of shop lifters, Suzanne and I adjusted our positions until she was on the far side of the island. My mom turned her back to the cupboard to face Suzanne, and I made off with the glasses.
An after dinner drink is only one of the things my mother can no longer do. This past few days, I've puzzled over taking her to the ocean. I can drive her right to the edge of the sand, but the dunes will obscure the view if we remain sitting in the car. Live music at some little bistro would be so enjoyable, but will we find a parking place out front, will there be long lines for the bathroom? I'm just going to try the beach and the music anyway, but as for the after dinner drink.....no. I've got a secret stash on my balcony.