Seven prayers and seven hours in the car with my parents.
The father of a friend of our family passed away last week. It was very sudden, he was an elderly man with some health issues but he died in an auto accident though thankfully there was no one else seriously injured. My parents live an hour north of my house and the funeral was held in Easton, MD which is just over an hour south of me so they picked me up on the way.
The day of the funeral we had unbelievably heavy rain (of course) and it was our first chilly day probably in the high 60's. The horn blew out front at 10:15 and I gathered my things and headed out. My Mom was driving as always because my Dad can't really drive anymore though he is not happy relinguishing control. We got to the end of my street and Mom started to turn right and Dad snaps "go left" she snapped the wheel to the left, "you need to take 100". Actually he was wrong but no harm. We get on 100 and Mom got confused and missed the exit for the quickest route then tries to stomp the brake to make it, rain, traffic, I told her just to keep going it was ok. So we're going about 10 miles out of our way, big deal.
Now Dad wants to know if I have any snacks, so oatmeal bars all around, all's well. My neice sends me a text "Are you almost here?" I felt like I had my kids in the car. "We are almost out of the neighborhood". Mom hits the correct exit this time, ok! I do not know how she gets anywhere, honest to goodness, if she changes lanes Dad wants to know why, if not he thinks she should. The woman, apparently doesn't like to hit the brake unless there is danger of a collision. I was on the edge of my seat. I offered to drive several times but she wouldn't have it. My neice has now sent about 10 text messages because she wants company, or she's bored I don't know.
We got into Easton and Dad is the only one who knows where the funeral home is so we made it with only 1 wrong turn. They have handicap parking but no handicap access to the building so Dad has to walk around 2 sides of the building lugging an oxygen tank in the rain, this made him a bit grumbly. We're in and locate my neice and my sister, pay our respects and find a seat.
There must have been 200 people attending this service. They had people seated in two different rooms and in the second room (where we were) they had a flat screen tv with a live video feed of the front room. Pretty high tech stuff. It was a pretty long service, every bit of an hour so I started looking around. There was a priest sitting on a couch sleeping, not sure why he was there, he didn't speak. Then there was an older gent in front of me, must have been in his late 70's. He was totally Grecian Formulaed!! You've seen them, it looks like if that hair gets wet it's going to run down the back of their necks in black streaks like mascara. I couldn't stop looking. You know, at some point you just ought to give it up you're not fooling anybody.
Back to the car and now my neice is with us. I decided that we should skip the cemetary because Dad couldn't do any more walking. Plus it was raining like crazy and my neice's stomache had been growling for an hour. Again, Dad is the only one who knows where we are going and now we had to stop at McDonald's. We are driving down a two lane road coming up to a big intersection. Mom asks which way, Dad has to think a minute then says you need to make a left. Well, Mom starts over into the left turn lane and Dad yells "NO, not here". She careens back into her lane (Idid not even want to look behind us) and he snaps "turn left at the intersection not here!" Near death and she was doing the right thing ayway. No, he didn't apologize for getting her all frazzled.
Half an hour later we head over to the local fire hall for the reception. Lots of people, lots of visiting and lots of cake. I had my back to most of the room so I didn't get much people watching in but I have to tell you about one man that did stand out to me. This gentleman was probably in his mid to late 50's wearing dress pants and a shirt with a tie and on his feet he had the oddest shoes I've ever seen! I tried hard to find a picture of them somewhere but this is the closest I could come. His were brown sort of a cross between a tennis shoe and a hiking boot with springs for heels. Must be comfy?
I was very happy to get home that night.