First and foremost, Happy Thanksgiving. I hope that everyone who is reading this has a little bit of home and comfort today.
Second, it has come to my attention that people really wanted to donate to a Wii fund for E. I greatly appreciate that there are people generous enough in the world who are willing to give a complete stranger money for a gift for their daughter. You are amazing people with kind hearts. But although I appreciate your offer, I must refuse. Hubby and I have spent years straightening ourselves out financially. Now that E is older and we can finally afford to give her a Wii, even if it means we buy less for ourselves, WE want to give her the Wii. It means more that we are buying it without going into debt, making her sacrifice and to be giving it to her now. We are fine. I am enjoying the fact that I only have $15 to spend on Hubby this Christmas. His gifts are going to mean more to him and to me, also. So thanks, but I must decline.
Third, I always associate myself as a Southern writer even though I am a true Midwesterner. But whenever we come here to Florida I am reminded that I am just a poser. I go from the polite, nouveax South to Down-South, DEEP Down-South. Now you may not think of Florida as being the deep South, but there are pockets here that rival Biloxi, MS and Mobile, Al. Since I have been here, I have been fed homemade black-eyed peas, creamed corn, sticky rice with tomato gravy and pan-fried pork chops. The house we are in is the oldest house in the town and it is filled from floor to ceiling with country knick-knacks and antiques. I kid you not, Country Living may one day come here to do a pictorial spread. There's even a swinging bed on the back porch.
People get together just to chew the fat and talk about the Snow Birds and Damn Yankees. I surreptitiously leave the room when these conversations start. But the air feels different here, heavier and more humid. We are surrounded by orange groves and flowering bushes. Banyan trees grow native here and Spanish moss abounds. It's amazing. It's so different here that my father-in-law just asked who Bob Marley was. It is the true South.
Lastly, I must answer some of my commenters who think the real alarms going off are a message. I must say I am starting to agree. I purposely didn't mention that the night my fire alarm went off, I felt that tell-tale tugging at my feet. Sticking to my desire to keep myself closed off to all things spiritual, I firmly told whatever it was to go away. It was only a few hours later that the alarm went off. But I still wasn't convinced, until we arrived here in Florida. We had only been here a few hours and I was upstairs reading to E before she went to bed when my in-laws security alarm malfunctioned. It's warning beep kept going off, alerting them that something was wrong with Section 14. Only there is no section 14. My father-in-law called the alarm company and they couldn't figure out what was going wrong. They agreed there was no section 14.
I was starting to get freaked out. ANOTHER alarm was going off. What the hell? But then I got to thinking about the number 14. Remember when hand-held calculators came out and we all spent so much time creating words with numbers, flipping the calculator over and reading them. HELLO, OHIO, HI!!!! Think of 14 on a digital screen. The four on a calculator does not look like a closed four, it looks like an upside down h. Was my message a ghost saying "hi?" Am I crazy? Who's trying to talk to me again? Do I even want to answer?
Anywho, I have one more day here and will be driving the long drive back up 95. I still have my deep, malicious cough and the fuzzy animals here are not helping, so wish me luck surviving my last day and the long drive home. Not to mention the crush of relatives that set off all of my "too close to my personal space" bells. Ahh, tis the season....Happy Thanksgiving.