Now, night time is when the fun begins. Adam is usually home around five and we spend as much time as we can in the garage.
For him, it is his home away from home and for me, it’s the place right next to my garden, and him. Sometimes the house gets oppressive. Sometimes we need a bigger space, fresh air.
Thursday, March 14th, 1940
Somehow my life just hangs in balance and anticipation till the doorbell rings and I greet my Cookie. We went to the show tonight instead of going to church. Saw “Remember the Night” and “Buried Alive.” It rained and we got our feet wet. Came home and dried out for about an hour.
We get away while we are out there, in the garage. There are axes to throw at Styrofoam targets. There’s a motorized scooter and a trumpet from the 40s neither of us knows how to play, but we do any way. There’s mice that find places to fit themselves I’d never think they would. There’s music, and, of course, a fridge for beer.
Thursday, March 7th, 1940
Jakey bought a new suit today but mom tells me it’s a dark suit and not suitable for Spring-brown. We went to the show to see “The Fighting 69th.” Stayed up till after 12. We are getting into bad habits staying up so late. Will have to pay for it someday.
Our shoulders are, as we play around together and drive our neighbors crazy, slowly relaxing.
“Hey, shush.” I put my hand out to stop Adam’s movements. We were doing something and we both stopped dead in our tracks. Then we both hear it and we rush for the house. Babu is calling out my name in a long, loud shout: “Aaaaaaannnnnngiiiie!”
I’m remembering the time we heard a loud thump and ran down stairs. She was on the floor in front of the kitchen door and we couldn’t even open it to get in to her. That time she had broken her nose and there was enough blood on the floor to prove it. Adam is remembering the time she had a bathroom accident and walked all through the kitchen to shout up stairs for him and then walked all the way back to the bathroom, leaving a trail we lovingly referred to in our retelling of the story as the “Poop Chi Minh Trail.”
We rush inside expecting some horror, some sort of body fluid. She is in the hallway moving back into the kitchen. We ask her what is the matter but she is too focused on walking to answer us. As we wait for her to tell us what’s wrong I see the culprit.
“What are you doing here?” I ask.
Stella had invited herself in to Babu’s first floor. The door upstairs had been left open and Stella loves to nose open the first floor door and go to see Babu. It has never happened before without my supervision but Stella knows nothing about it, she just looks up at me with a big smile and a tail wag.
“He kept coming and going. I didn’t know if he was supposed to be here or where you were.” she told us. My dog for some reason is always a he. We checked and there was no other incident than Stella’s appearance and reappearance where she should not have been. No harm, no foul. We laugh and take her outside with us. Adam and I have about ten more minutes of time outside before one of us needs to go inside and do “night time stuff” with Babu. We could push it to 20, now that the excitement of the rouge dog is over. We push it to 20. We argue over turning the music up or down, I become acutely aware that the new Nerf gun projectiles hurt, and I breathe fresh air for a while longer.
Maybe we shouldn’t spend so much time out doors. Maybe we should spent more time right by Babu’s side. As I read her passages, I see how she and Jakey found comfort on the outside of the house as well.
Tuesday, March 5th, 1940
We rode in the truck. Played ping pong at Ernie’s till 11:30. Came home and spent some time in the hall. Cookie felt very good. Said he always wanted to feel like that and feel me.
Sunday, March 24th, 1940
We stayed on the back steps for ages trying to thrash out whether I should go to the dinner dance with Ted. He tells me to go but I know he doesn’t want me to by other things he says.
Ahhh, here is the Ted conundrum again. I’ll give it to you straight:
Monday, March 25th, 1940
Told Ted that I couldn’t go and he was sweet about it.