Erin's Journals

Monday, May 16, 2022

Just a thought… Later in life, children are often reluctant for a host of reasons to assume responsibility over their parents, a reversal of roles that symbolizes mortality. [Caroline Fraser]

You can watch a video version of this journal on my Facebook page, or here on YouTube.

Good morning – and welcome in. Today Rob and I are on the road again (and the water) as we board a ferry to the mainland and make the five-hour trip over to the interior to visit my dad.

Before I tell you more, let me give you some insight into what airline tickets are here these days: a one-hour flight to Kelowna, or three hours with a stop in Calgary or Vancouver, was going to cost us 900 dollars. One way. Per person. So since it may be early where you’re watching this, I’ll do the math: add in a rental car and before hotel and we’re talking at least $4000. To get from here to Kelowna.

So, yeah, it made the ferry costs, hotels and even gas at $2.40 a litre for the SUV (albeit hybrid) a heck of a lot cheaper than flying. Yes, there are cheaper flights if you have the weeks in advance to book. In this case, we didn’t, but we’ll make a point of it in future if we decide we’d rather not drive. And we’ll hopefully be avoiding many of the parts of the Trans Canada that were washed out in last year’s horrific floods in the BC interior.

So, after 12 days in hospital, Dad is back in his own bed in his retirement residence – a bed to which we’ve added rails for safety at the hospital’s insistence. Dad likens it to being in a rodeo just to get around the gates, or to his days of calling square dances where you had to “swing around the promenade.” But he’s adjusting.

Dad is far from recovered in terms of his mental state after a wicked infection and then Covid on top of that. But I’ll join the team of Davis daughters in sussing things out, and seeing what we think the future might look like. I’ve brought paper and markers and tape to put signs up to remind him of things, and we’ll see just what else we can do while we wait and learn just how much of his mind returns, and deal with the possibilities if it does not.

Dad has not lost his sense of humour, thank goodness: he’s getting a little concerned about the frequency of these visits and asked sister Les the other day, “Is there something terminal I should be worried about?” Yep – that’s Dad.

I’m so grateful to be seeing him again; to have a week that’s open enough that we can go. Of course, as he turns 89 in less than a month, every visit is more meaningful than the last.

As we are reminded by news from around the world, as in Ukraine, and closer to home, amidst the devastation and heartbreak in Buffalo, no sunrise – no loved one – is to be taken for granted.

I’ll sign off for today and promise you that on Thursday there will be a journal of the scenic variety. And, of course, because we all have trouble sleeping some nights, there WILL be a new Drift story for you tomorrow, one that has a royal taste to it, since it’s the Victoria Day weekend ahead and it’s called Son of Seven Queens. You’ll find it here after 6 pm ET Tuesday.

Be well and we’ll talk to you here on Thursday, hotel internet permitting.

Rob WhiteheadMonday, May 16, 2022