Monday, March 31, 2008

You Got To Have Friends

I took advantage of the Easter period to take a few extra days off, to clean up my mother's old room in her previous Home and give back the keys, since she's now well settled at her new Home. The first day, my brother and his family came to help. We managed to pack the rest of her stuff and take them to her new room. But like all old people, she accumulated a lot of stuff: 50 varieties of black wool jackets and 50 white ones, tons of toilet paper and paper tissue boxes, zillions of cassettes of Vietnamese music and Buddhist chants, etc.. When my brother and his family left, there were still lots to discard/clear from the room.

That's where friends come in.

I asked my "best" friend Fongue, by springing the request for help on him in such a way that he couldn't really turn me down. The two of us put everything in garbage bags and haul them to the disposal area or to my car. Since Fongue and I were both of the intellectual white collar type, we were both clumsy and weak and what the French call "les incompétents". The whole process quickly turned to a farce. As we were carrying huge garbage bags to the elevator, I can hear Fongue walking behind me, huffing and puffing. As I turned the corner, I heard a crash and curses, and sure enough he has dropped the bag and spilled garbage all over the floor. I peed my pants laughing at him, but in a discreet way.

Then he had the idea of putting an old tray on my mother's old walker as wheels, to carry the heavy stuff. So here we were, me carrying boxes, trying not to laugh as I was walking in front of Fongue, who was slowly pushing the walker and holding the stuff piled on the tray with his chin. Of course, within five minutes, the whole tray collapsed and the stuff went rolling all around the floor.. I stood there laughing, while a woman came running to help him pick up the stuff on the floor. Then she realized that he was not an old man and said: "Oh, I thought you were handicapped or something!". Me, yelling from afar, still laughing: "Oh he's handicapped all right, mentally handicapped!"

Thank you to Brother and his family, to Fongue and to the Ex who all helped clear my mother's room. Couldn't have done it without you guys.

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