Joe had to work today so I stayed home. I didn't have anything in particular to do, so I watched a movie, made the bed, put a new battery in the clock, watched some more TV, made a late lunch, got and sorted through the mail, watched some more TV, noodled around on the computer.
It's so weird to have nothing to do on a Saturday.
For years, literally years and years, my Saturdays were booked: Lunch with Mom.
When Aunt Ruth was still alive, we'd pick both of them up and we'd head to the pub where Aunt Ruth could get her smoked salmon and Mom could get her baked brie. Or we'd have Mexican food, treating ourselves to margaritas and taco salads.
After Aunt Ruth died, Mom began to rely on the weekly outing. She could still get around pretty well; still get up and stairs. We went a little Italian place more often than not, where she could get a nice salad with pears and gorgonzola cheese. For awhile she wanted only Chinese food -- beef with broccoli, and don't forget the fried wonton chips.
Once she moved into assisted living, the weekend lunches were her escape. Even as she got weaker and weaker, nothing was going to stop her from making that date. A little restaurant close to her assisted living home became our regular hangout; the servers got to know us and brought Mom's iced tea before we were all seated. If I was just a few minutes late, I got a phone call asking where I was. If one of us couldn't make it, she needed a good reason why.
Anyway, it's a strange feeling to not be picking her up, helping her into and out of the car, joking about this and that, and eating a meal. You'd think I'd feel free as a bird, relieved to have my Saturdays back.
But I don't. I guess I just miss her.