Somehow when my laptop battery ran out last Sunday night, I lost most of a post which I re-wrote and posted the next morning. In the tradition of Anne LaMott’s “shitty first drafts,” the second post was a better piece of writing, but it was missing one important piece of information: my suitcase did indeed arrive last Saturday afternoon.
It did not arrive until after St. Casserole had introduced me to several fine local shopping destinations, where I acquired some new and appropriate foundation garments along with an emergency preaching outfit, a rather lovely pink tweed skirt and a cream-colored cotton cable-stitch pullover sweater, which I in fact wore despite having received my suitcase in plenty of time. There were sales, you see. It is also a good thing to contribute to the local economy.
Today I went to the Humane Society again and saw a lot of new dogs, but I also checked in on my favorite mama dog. It was a great disappointment to discover that while I was walking the puppies whose cages were being cleaned, she had already gone for her morning walk. I did have the pleasure of seeing her again later when we stopped into a pet supply store to pick up necessary items for Whistle and Fish, as well as training treats for the Peepee Puppie. Mama Toenails, as St. C dubbed her, was one of the lucky dogs spending the afternoon at the store, looking for a new family. The gal from the shelter said she was one of the nicest dogs around and was clearly doing all she could to find Mama Toenails a new home. I was relieved to know she had an advocate.
My favorite new friend this morning was a 3 month-old puppy who looked like an odd combination of Pointer and Pit Bull. She strayed in a neighboring town, so one hopes her people will come and find her. But things are still chaotic in this recovering area, and who knows what the situation may have been. This little girl didn’t care about walking once we got outside. All she wanted was a good, long snuggle. I was happy to provide it. If you can’t be with the one you love, honey, love the one you’re with.
You would think that a woman who can identify hush puppies on sight and has previously eaten fried green tomatoes, okra and grits cooked by her own mother would not need to prove her Southern heritage, but I find that the people of the South Deeper than my home state are dubious about my credentials. Tonight I will lay their doubts to rest when I eat catfish for dinner. My own family, who by now I think are wishing I would just come on home, comment on the retrieval of my long lost Southern accent. Wait until they see me wearing lipstick every day…and refreshing it appropriately as needed.
We are in the homestretch. I am working on the sermon for Sunday, taking pictures of sights I want to bring back to my church folk at home and generally reflecting on the experience of being both away and being here. I find I wish I could bring the two places closer together, but I think that is just a symptom of wanting to bring the whole world closer together, to promote understanding and caring and communicating across all sorts of boundaries we artificially construct to make ourselves feel safe from one another.