Precious Cargo


At 90 years old, my Dad doesn’t get out of the house much. But this morning he woke up early, dressed himself and announced that he was ready to go home. Sometimes this happens; he gets a bit confused and doesn’t understand he is home. Perfect time to take him out for a spin.

Mom and I have errands to run so we invite Dad with us. As we get on the road, Mom requests her favorite station — 89.3 Lite Jazz. Ughhh. I’m not sure which I hate more — lite jazz or salsa — but I’m committed to staying cool on the road. Normally I derive joy from driving offensively, giving the little yellow taxis a bit of competition. Today I’m a lot more careful; I have precious cargo on-board. Dad grasps the handle over the passenger side door as I merge in and out of traffic slowly, delicately drive over speed bumps and take extra care in keeping calm. Until I get to the intersection at Via Brazil. “Put the wipers on! Put the wipers on!” Mom shouts from the back seat. Suddenly she’s a little bit hysterical. The culprit: a man dowsing our car with bottled water and reaching for his squigee even as I wave “no.” “He didn’t even ask. I hate it when they do that. It feels like an invasion,” says Mom. I’m so caught by the whole thing I just sit there, waiting for the light to turn or for this man to finish, whichever comes first. After a minute, I dig around for change and ask Dad to hand it to him. Dad is much happier to pay than Mom. Bu then again, he’s doesn’t get out of the house much.


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