Friday, December 25, 2015

Under the Dining Room Table at Grammy's

Assuming you empty the spare bedrooms of photo albums, Smithsonian Magazines and crates of canceled checks (1942-2015), my grandma’s house sleeps maybe 7 comfortably. There are 12 of us currently residence plus a 100-pound dog named Sawyer. If Grammy were here, she’d be harrumphing around between us, moving knick knacks out of harm’s way, fussing over hot water usage and rinsing out zip locks.

Immediately upon arrival, my mom and her brothers played the age card and claimed the beds in the bedrooms. My cousins commandeered all sofas and the living room floor. By the time I showed up, my options were seriously limited.

A hotel was out of the question.

“Why do you want to stay in a hotel all by yourself? Your cousins are all staying at the house. I’m staying at the house. Your father is at the house. We’re all at the house. It would be nicer if you were at the house too. I don’t understand why you would leave us and waste the money on a hotel.”— My mother.

So I took up residence underneath the dining room table. It’s like a yurt. I went around and collected a bunch of random pillows and a sheepskin rug and have been living like a sultan under there.

Merry Christmas from under the dining room table

My under table turf has safety benefits. Sawyer the dog is very friendly. If you’re ground-level and not moving fast enough, he will slurp your entire face. Turns out my yurt is fortified with dining room chairs. Sawyer cannot wedge his friendly ass between them. Others suffered numerous night-time saliva attacks. I did not.

It’s good to be at Grammy’s. Her home has a certain foggy, mild and welcoming micro-climate. An ambient roar punctuated by people bolting in and out of doors and accidentally ringing the doorbell at 6am, kicking each other companionably and discussing how we all have soap residue on our shirts from casually leaning against the wall near the door in grammy’s hospital room and accidentally getting squirted with a powerful shot of Purel.

I’ll miss this place.