Monday, July 26, 2004

15 cat bites, poor Pathfinder

07-26-04 mayatime: 2 Oc 13 Xul (portal)

The adventures of the fabulous dad continue! It turns out that the medicine given to Dad by the doctor on Friday made him sick to his stomach, which the doctor warned him it might. Instead of calling me or calling the doctor, he and my mother just halved the dosage. Of course, that doesn’t work with antibiotics! So when I saw him last night at Grandma’s his hand was even more swollen, to the point where it looked like it would have to be drained (skin red and shiny and stretched).

So today I took him back to the doctors. Another $25 co-pay which is bullshit; he was just there on FRIDAY (yesterday in working day terms, today’s Monday) for the SAME THING. It did not need to get lanced. The doctor said there’s no pus, only fluid (rather like my leg, so I understand–if someone could lance my leg, I’d do it). He cleaned it again, and gave a new prescription for tetracycline. I’m not fond of the drug–look what it did to my Lance-bird, almost killed him in quarantine–but for this type of virulent infection I guess it’s the only other option.This makes him sensitive to the sun–the instructions were “don’t go to the beach.”

Then we had to fill the prescription and my father didn’t know what pharmacy he uses. I tried to call my mom at work but my cell phone batteries have been stupid lately (go from fully charged to low battery in about 1 minute of talk time) and before anyone answered the phone in her department the phone was dead. I was just going to go to Brooks’–it’s the closest to his house–when he decided that Stop and Shop was where to go. So to Stop and Shop we went. We dropped off the script and then I had to get apples for the birds. I said, “let’s go get apples now” and Dad agreed so I walked away. I became aware that he was not following me and he had vanished. Missing: one dad, slightly Alzheimer-ish, description: blue eyes, brown hair, mustache, blue Hyundai shirt, shorts, grey sneakers colored chartreuse with a high-lighter. . . last seen in pharmacy area of Wallingford Stop & Shop.

I knew he wouldn’t leave the store without his prescription so I got my apples and paid for them and then found him chatting with a woman in line at the pharmacy. She called him Bob so she might have known him, or he might have introduced himself to her (anything is possible). I asked why he hadn’t followed me, and he said because his prescription wasn’t ready. That’s right, they said fifteen minutes, plenty of time to buy a bag of apples. So we sat on the bench next to an unfriendly old man (who glared at us and left as if we’d kicked him off, although there was plenty of room for three) and waited for a while.

On the way home, I tried to engage Dad in conversation about the broken air conditioning in my car. Although he sold cars for my whole life, and we won’t discuss how many years that’s been, he never learned anything about engines or engine parts and he refused to speculate. It was really just an exercise in using his mind. Hey, I tried. The list of things my poor old Pathfinder needs done keeps growing: A/C, radio (only 1 speaker works), the struts or exhaust studs or possibly both, the headlight with the bullet hole and the mold and the water inside, and an oil change. It’s only at 110K miles, plenty of life in the old girl yet. I priced out a new Jeep Wrangler online, one of the “long” ones, and it’s $28K with a hardtop. And the long ones don’t come in purple which is what I want. The Pathfinder was $28.9K ten years ago. I thought Jeeps were cheap. Then again, look at our last Jeep. No, don’t, that’s a story for another day! (678)

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