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Pottery Avenue

It's "projects day", so I drove my old pick-up to the Big Box home improvement store. I hate that place. I like the local small hardware store. But my daughter got a job with those big guys. I'm duty bound to support my girl, and her Faustian deal.
With my three new smoke detectors and a tarp, I headed home. There was a lot of traffic, so I used an alternate route.

Pottery Avenue runs through an area thick with medical and dental offices, a few small businesses and some convalescent homes. There's also a middle school, which never made any sense. On a Saturday, there was hardly another car in sight.

On shuffle, the band Styx came on my truck stereo. First I passed the place my mom and dad both died. The folks at Ridgemont Place were always kind to my parents and my family. We were one of the few families that visited regularly. My mom went first, about six years ago....

"To keep me alive, just keep me alive
Somewhere to hide, just keep me alive
"

...and my father died a couple of years ago. I've wanted to go back at some point to Ridgemont and thank them. I just never did.

My father-in-law, Jim, stayed at The Life Care Center a couple of blocks down. He was a big, strong man. An Army veteran. Soft spoken, and slow to anger...

"I'm not a hero, I'm not a savior, forget what you know.
I'm just a man whose circumstances went beyond his control"

...His wife, my mother-in-law, is not on Pottery Avenue. She lives about 30 minutes away. She misses Jim. We all do.
The intersection with Tremont Avenue was dead ahead...

"The problem's plain to see
Too much technology
Machines to save our lives
Machines dehumanize"


The carbureted 400 cubic inch engine roared as I turned onto Tremont. The air was crisp, the skies clear. I felt good. I was alive.
Funny thing, I don't go down Pottery very often any more. 'Cept for the annual dental check-up.
Yet, Pottery Avenue is part of me. Almost programmed into me..

"I am Kilroy! Kilroy! Kilroy!"

Comments

Nice thoughts there Winston.

And that last four-liner may well be the reality of where we're headed.
 
I gotta comment that I'm shocked this extraordinarily well written story hasn't generated more comments, or deserved applause. It certainly resonated with me. So, I'm applauding again.
 
Thank you for bumping this, sas. You're right: it's really good. Thank you Winston.

I think some good things often get missed.

Funny how music is such a part of our generation. Some might say we're living in a movie but it's a grim reality then, not a show.

I remember my grandmother went into the home. It was more a hospital. This guy who had been her husband's best friend,(he'd wanted to marry her many years after he'd died) was there and he was blind. She'd lost her mind by then ( why she went in) but she started crying when she saw him. He couldn't see her. He'd been a physical brute of a man, not brutal, but strong, and there he was close to a hundred having to put up with care by others.
 
As someone who cared for the extreme elderly (both my parents into their 90s), I thought I'd share what I saw one family do when their father was in a nursing home. They put, next to his bedside, an 8 x 10 photo of their dad in his WW II military uniform. The elderly are too often ignored, as if they never were. Damn pity. This was an excellent way to remind others.
 

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Winston
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