My father now answers the phone with "And who is calling me?" and when I say my name and my greetings, he repeats my name, aha, Sabine on a Sunday, he calls out, and tells me his latest temperature and blood pressure readings. He has well and truly survived the covid infection without any of the expected symptoms. We proceed in the usual manner, he talks, I listen. This is his clever way to cover up the fact that he can no longer really hear what I say. When I make an attempt at conversation, shouting, whatever, he ends the call. Lately, he has begun to thank me for calling before he hangs up, which is most startling. I believe it's purely out of caution since he may not be entirely sure who has called him. Just to be on the safe side, could be someone else, someone important, not one of his children.
Many thanks for all the wonderful comments to my last post about decluttering. You have given me much to think about. The ideas of a bonfire send off was most appealing and I spent a few early morning hours setting the scene, but my family rejected my - already quite elaborate - proposal point blank as it would unnecessarily increase our carbon footprint.
I have therefore handed over all my grandmother's letters, the ones she wrote to her children during the WWII years, to R for scanning. He has taken to it with great gusto, archiving by year and month. He just informed me that the letters from 1943 - 1945 appear to have been handled and folded many more times than the ones after 1945. We speculate about how many people may have read them and where and when. R wants to find secret codes, suspects that my grandmother attempted to convey secret messages to her two adult children, one a medical student working in field hospitals, the other about to desert his unit before walking home across eastern Europe. I don't agree, this is not a war movie.
Here's hoping that his enthusiasm will not fade when I open the next steamer trunk.
Earlier today, we distributed another batch of books across the city's open public book shelves (?) or cases (?) whatever you call it. A friend had warned me that my books would not go to readers but that these places are "raided regularly by mean characters with the intention to sell donated books on the black market". Yikes! or rather, good luck, fellows! Whatever it takes.
It has been raining and snowing, today the rivers has bursts its bank. Not much but enough for headlines. On our way back from the book drop, we looked through the hectic wiper business into a grey and cold Sunday afternoon. A few more weeks, we reassured each other.There's some good info on this song here.