Friday, March 04, 2005

Family Photos: An Adventure in Mishaps

Yesterday I woke up extra early because I wanted to go see my daughter in her school news broadcast. She was announcing the lunch menu [Dominoes Pizza, Fish Nuggets and P B & J], and I wanted to see how all of her rehearsing paid off. She was cute as ever. She managed to look at the camera several times and she only chewed on her fingers a little bit.

She was happy that I was there, and Kimi was overjoyed to see Abi on TV.
It is one of those things, since having the opportunity to stay home, that I am glad that I actually did. I could have opted to stay in bed--I didn't.

However, my ambition didn't stop there. I decided that since I was up already I would get an early start and drive out to Rochester, an hour away, and go to my grandmother's house to pick up some of her old photos. I am putting together a scrap book of memories for her and I need some of her photos for it.

Then, my ambition grew...I would bring the dog...since she doesn't get out of the house very why not?

Then another bright idea struck me [more it possible?]...I would go visit my grandma at my uncles house since she is only moments away, she currently lives with my uncle because of her stroke, she can't manage stairs on her own. This way she could visit with Kimi for a little bit.

Great! My day was planned out.

I packed up the kids and the dog, I went to Abi's school, and watched her was only a few minutes and Roxy is ok in the car on her own for a little while.

After the broadcast I had to go back home to get directions from my grandmother's house to my uncles house . I know they are close, but I don't know the way. So...I came back home to print out a map, then I called Caleb at which a conversation about the internet usage and opening emails was the subject...and left both of us steaming.

So, right after we hung up I left to make the trek up to my grandma's house. I'm driving along, and winding down....listening to music...and that is when I realize that I left the map at home. I could easily turn around at this point but I do not...I figure I will just call from grandma's house to get big deal. However, I should have realized at this point...that the one small glitch was just the first step in the downward spiral. Because in my life...that is always the case. However, optimist and overestimator that I am...I continue on.

We, [Kimi, me and the dog] arrive to my grandma's house...and I am riding on E at this point. But I know that there is a gas station close by, so I will get gas on the way back. No Big Deal...right? Right.

It is at this precise moment that I reach for my purse that is sitting in the passengers seat and find that it is not in the passengers seat. And just then because even my photographic memory is against me...I get a visual of my purse sitting on the desk...right next to the map. Why does my brain hate me so?

Therefore, at 10:00 in the morning when most people are at work, I have found myself sitting in my car outside of my grandmother's empty house with no gas, no money, no key to get into my grandmother's house [key is in my purse], a two-year-old and a dog. NO BIG DEAL...right?

So I weigh my options...

Cry is on the top of the the sinking sensation settles over me because this is a totally wasted trip. But I am resourceful...and I endeavor to combine my resourcefulness and pitifulness...

I take Kimi out of the car and look around and try to assess if there are any neighbors that might be 10:00 on a weekday.

Thankfully there is...and upon spotting this I trudge over through the snow...with Kimi screaming in my ear "SNOW SNOW"....yes kid, it's snow.

So I gather myself up and knock on the door, not really knowing what I will say "Will you adopt me?" comes to mind...but upon further consideration I realize that this person would probably only be interested in adopting Roxy...because she is the only sane [and most loveable] personality among the three of us.

The lady comes to the door who turns out to be someone I recognize. After relaying my sad tale she takes me in feeds Kimi and I cookies and otherwise makes everything all better. She is a grandma...I can tell.

Eventually after a phone call, the maintenance people come and unlock my grandmothers house for me...without charging...and the lady sends me off with $10.00 for gas so that my poor lost [and extremely grateful] soul can make it all the way back home without having to compromise myself by either hitchhiking or selling myself to the maintenance people at my grandmother's community.

Thankfully Kimi is cute enough for this kind lady to overlook the fact that Kimi was dismantling her home.

So...FINALLY I get into my grandmother's house. And thus begins the search for my grandmother's photos. I searched the basement first...because I was certain that there were photos down there, and there was some flooding recently so I wanted to make sure that they weren't ruined. But all I found were some snaps that belonged to my mom. So then I headed upstairs to my grandmothers room to look. And I only found a handful.

[Mind you this search was punctuated by "Kimi Don't Touch" every few seconds that get louder each time until I am shouting and choking on dust]
The lack of photos struck me as very very odd. This is because as far back as I can remember my grandma has never went anywhere without a camera. I'm not kidding.

So there is a fortune in photos somewhere...That is when the hunt really began. I started searching in every possible place that a person would hide photos. Soon enough dust was kicking up...and my allergies were in full swing. So my search was now punctuated by "Kimi don't touch" and "sniffle sniffle sneeze" was getting miserable...and I was sure I had a dust particle the size of a golfball in my right eye.

So...the upstairs was clean...meaning no photos. Where did she stash them? So I went into the living room and checked the cabinets...what an idea, I amaze myself sometimes. And then I hit the motherload.
Seriously...I found two large bags of photos stashed behind her recliner chair...and about 8 photo albums in the cabinets.

My original intent was to just pick out a few photos and leave. Unfortunately, many of the photos were still in their envelopes...and the ones in albums...I'll get to those in a minute...regardless, by this time I could barely breathe. The asthma decided to add it's two cents to this adventure.

So...I boxed them all up and put them in the car [as I wheezed, coughed and sniffled]. Just before I leave I go to call my uncles house and learn that the phone has been turned off...duh, no one lives here any longer so the phone isn't needed. Which brings about a feeling of certainty regarding the matters of my grandmothers house. I spent most of my childhood loving to go there...and this little escapade may mark one of the last times that I will visit. I am sure my lungs and allergies are grateful...but that makes me sad.

The albums, I have realized were my great grandmother's. They are in really bad shape, but they are a wealth of historical information regarding my grandmother and her family. I have now seen photos of my grandmother and grandfather when they were young and in well as photos of her sisters when they were young girls. To which my son later replied..."grandma was a looker"!

I also learned that I look almost exactly like my grandma's sister Norma Jean. [Even though my uncle told me this a few months ago...I didn't really believe him] My kids thought it was me...and Caleb flipped out. It was so uncanny, the resemblence.

Those albums are so precious...and if my family lets me, I am going to repair them and put the loose ones in albums for my grandmother.

So reminiscing aside...I am just glad to have survived the trip. I wonder if I will ever learn to not pack too many things to do in one day? Probably not...I always overestimate. Always.


At 10:34, Anonymous Scott C. said...

Note to self: Buy Kassi a PDA for her birthday...

(If everyone had a PDA, the world would be an easier place to live in)

At 11:03, Blogger Kassi said...

Only if it has a GPS as well...

At 11:05, Anonymous rich.d said...

but wouldn't the pda have been in her purse? I think you need a wallet with a big chain attached to it, a cell phone (HUGE for emergancies), and train your dog to be like Lassie. You could have sent Roxy to warn Caleb you were in trouble.
Also, I couldn't help but think of an optional title of "Family Photos: A Series of Unfortunate Events."

At 11:06, Anonymous Anonymous said...

oh, mispell on emergency. =P

At 11:08, Blogger Kassi said...

Rich: I thought the same thing in regards to the title... :)

At 12:12, Anonymous Scott C. said...


Maybe a PDA with a chain on it? :P

Maybe even a utility belt! Then you could have a Kass-arang!

At 14:23, Blogger Kassi said...

Poke fun all you want Scott...just remember for your next visit...I'm driving. :)

At 15:20, Anonymous Scott C. said...

I may just camp out at White Castle then. :P

Like a cross keeping a vampire at bay!!


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