I don't often mention this. She's a former postal worker. Nineteen years on the flat sorting machine in the city. The stories are legendary, but with all the disclaimers in the credits of movies we watch nowadays, it'll be a blue moon before I ever write personals. The names can't be changed nor would innocent ol' me be protected.
Let's just say that after a particularly violent event, the postal service decides the employees need a quick refresher course in tolerance.
They hire a short bus to transport workers from the windowless concrete cell block called the main unit to an undisclosed location. A friend of Dawn's is a lifer. Been at it since she was a svelt babe until the present. She's not so svelt. Sort of a grosvelt. Picture this. She won't fit through the front door of the van. The man behind her nudges her gently on her tush. Oof, she's finally up the stairs. Oh wow.
Dawn's dad was a postal carrier before his knees gave out and he moved to Sun City. She's a brand new Mom, just shy of a few credits for a degree in Fine Art specializing in theater. The ex is a photographer. Circumstances require that she get a job, pronto. She works nights while a babysitter tucks the kid in his cradle. It ain't enough to sit at a machine keying zipcodes five nights, holidays and weekend included. She teaches tots at a dance studio during the day. Nearby is a karate studio where she learns and teaches kick boxing. The owner is a world champion. She scores number four in the nation at a tournament in MNLPS.
As I oogle Jennifer Aniston in a silvery sheath dress on the screen, Dawn passes me a small dish of mixed nuts. I fill my paw, carefully scrounging most of the almonds, cashews and filberts.In the kitchen cupboard is a plastic jar. I look at the net weight on the label and try to decipher the kilograms into pounds and ounces. I glance at the island to see if there's a fifty pound sack leaning against the birch panel. I have no ability to monitor my mixed nut intake, save for choking on a peanut or going into immediate cardiac arrest. See what I mean?
At the assisted living center, pre-Waldorf kids are coming over to entertain the elders.Most are three and four years old. If you're eighty five, three or four year-olds running around doing their thing is like me watching that bald Brit who plays tough guys, whatshisname, drive a shiny black BMW over a mountain road. Dawn fills plastic eggs with Pooh figures and a few treats. It's after Easter but the kids don't care. Life is one long holiday when you're four.
When I was four a box of vanilla wafers and a sand box is as close to nirvana as I could get, that is, until a big hairy dog stuck his wet nose in my box of 'nilla wafers. Scared the beejesus outa me.
The kitchen table is littered with strawberry, raspberry and orange filled chocolate eggs. Nearby is a bowl of red apples. It's to divert attention once the CSI team comes in and examines the scene for evidence as I lay/lie on the floor. Laying and lieing. It's what I do.
Since I work at home, there's the mistaken notion that I have more time. Dawn's the queen of one minute meals, trips to Kickapoo Corners for a "whatever" burger or Chinese 20 minutes away. I fancy myself as a pretty good cook. If you can't fancy yourself, whatdayahave? Pabst Blue Ribbon Beer as they say.
Ever so saintly, I remove all the skin from the chicken leg quarters. Under the skin, there's a fair amount of fat. That gets cut away. I dry the pieces on a clean terry cloth kitchen towel and dust them with organic flour. Then I break two Amish eggs into a zip lock plastic storage bag and coat the pieces evenly. In another bag I mix spices (secret recipe if it turns out well) breadcrumbs and crushed cornflakes. From egg dip to crumb mix and on to a Danish blue and white enameled pan sprayed with canola oil. An hour at 375 crisps the chicken nicely. I nuke our own sweet corn mixed with petite peas. A neighbor gifts us with their own BHG recipe canned beets cut into quarters.
|The Neighbors House-Check Out Front Porch|
My camera is dying. Until I figure it out, just call these artistic shots.