I am interrupting this series of updates to tell you what happened to me over the past 24 hours. Because, at this point in the Season, I think that you should read this.
I am sitting in a cute, older house that smells like cloves and was probably built after the Civil War, in a small town in northern Missouri. The woman who owns the house works at the local hospital.
She served me two Thanksgiving meals, yesterday.
Yeah, I told you that you'd want to read this update.
I was dropped off on a rural highway, outside of another small town, by a sheriff's deputy, yesterday. After his taillights disappeared over the hill, I sat down on my backpack, grabbed a withered blade of whisker wheat, stuck it between my teeth and started humming the theme to "Green Acres."
A woman in a little silver car drove by, turned around and came back.
She brought me back to this little town in Missouri.
The first place that we went to was the local hospital, because, as I already wrote, that is where she works. She disappeared and then returned with a tray, heaped with food, and I commenced to devouring it with a smile.
Then, when she finished working, she drove us back to her house where she served another Thanksgiving dinner to me and two elderly ladies. The ladies are old friends of hers and we enjoyed the dinner and each other's company very much.
After dinner, the ladies left and the woman who picked me up, brought me over to what we thought was going to be a great place to stay for a month.
It's a big apartment with a new stove and refrigerator, in it. It has a large living area, a full kitchen, a bedroom and bath with a tub and shower. The woman planned to cover the rent for me to stay there for a month.
(Late next month, I am moving into my winter quarters in Nebraska.)
Several other people contributed immediate pieces of furniture and other items. I settled in and they left for the night.
This is an excerpt from an email that I sent to a friend, today:
["I was so tired that I fell asleep in a chair. When I woke up, the nightmare began.
was after one o'clock in the morning. And that's when I saw
them...crawling up and down the walls...on the counters...in the
bathtub...in the sink...and along the baseboards...different sizes and
different stages in the their life cycle...the most dreadful
entomological scourge in Modern Day America...BEDBUGS!!!!
The entire apartment is infested with them.
I grabbed my things and fled.
I walked up to the hospital where my friend works and asked the guy behind
the ER desk to call my lady friend at her house.
The guy at the desk, a young snot-nosed brat, looked
at me like I was raving out of my head. I glared at him with all of my
might and quietly repeated the words...you know, in that quiet tone
that people use just before Mt. Vesuvius blows up. He called her and
then glanced back at me, looking totally confused.
"She'll be here in a few minutes." he said, transitioning from
obnoxious to curious, very quickly.
I sat down and said nothing.
The woman brought me back to her house where I stripped naked in the
doorway. We never brought my backpack in...it's been banished, for the
time being, to a spot outside. The clothes that I was wearing went
right into the washer and my boots joined the backpack in the same
I am devastated. Now I just want to get the holy heck out of here. I
should have known that it was too good to be true."]