New Beginnings

June 28, 2010


The Mushroom and The Baby have flown off to Toronto, leaving me and my Dad to get everything ready for the move. This mostly involves cleaning up the hairs The Mushroom has left in the corner of every room due to her Annual Malting,  picking up the random plastic spoons and bits of megablock that come with living with a toddler, and then putting everything else in the Jeep and driving for five days.

It has not taken me long to work out who has got the better end of this deal.

(Although I must also admit that my part in the cleaning and packing is pretty minimal.)

‘So, how’s it going?’ asked my Dad on the Wonderful Skype Machine.

The Mushroom looked a bit like she’d taken speed. ‘Look! LOOK WHAT I HAVE!’ she held up a muffin, a bag of carrots and some moisturizer.

My Dad looked confused.

‘That’s an odd lunch,’ he said.

‘I went into a SHOP and I BOUGHT THINGS. LOOOOOOK!’

There is a store here on the Prairies, I have to add. I’m not sure if it’s been mentioned before. I’ve never been in it, obviously, but apparently it’s an excellent place to go if what you’re really after is some grain. Or cigarettes.

‘Aah,’ said my Dad. ‘You’ve been shopping, then.’

The Mushroom’s pupils were dilated. The Baby was playing with a new toy. They are, very clearly, happy to be back in the city.

‘I miss you.’ said my Dad.

Hmm.

What The Mushroom and The Baby probably don’t know, of course, is that my Dad has woken up not just this morning, and not just this morning and yesterday morning, but for the past three days lying, fully dressed – including his shoes – on the sofa, a half drunk can of lager next to him and with a mouth covered a little in bits of pizza. They also probably don’t know that last night he and Enthusiastic Teacher went to a cowboy/oilrigger club, drank whisky and danced to Nickelback. What The Mushroom most definitely does not know is that since they left, the nearest thing my Dad has come to a vegetable is the mushroom on the pizzas he has been eating every night. In effect, my Dad has been main-lining alcohol and salt for SEVEN DAYS STRAIGHT.

She’ll smell it off him, I bet you. She will probably have some sort of salt swab tests waiting for him as he gets out of the car in Toronto.

In only three days, my Dad and I will set off on our Epic Road Trip. It will not be as I expected it, as there will be no Fluffy Usurper in the back getting over excited. He was a prairie cat, Mr Wilson – a little Prairie lion, in fact – and on the Prairies he will remain.

I am, as my Dad makes progress in packing boxes and hauling them into a pile by the door, getting a tad worried, though, about where I’m going to sit. The Jeep’s at the garage getting a once over and I think he may have forgotten that it’s not actually an articulated lorry.  I hope he’s not planning to put me on the roof. 

I’m also mildly concerned about out motel stops.

“Three out of four are pet friendly,” says my Dad.  That’s brilliant, I thought. And what am I supposed to do on night 3? I’m not sleeping in the frigging car.

“For the one that isn’t,” he continues, “I’m going to have to carry you in in my rucksack.”

Oh, for pissing sake.

I do have a bandana, though. I tried it on last night. It took me ages to tie it on, what with my claws and generally not knowing what a knot is.

I looked like a twat in it.

No bandana, then. Still up for the Johnny Walker, though.

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