June 6 thru 12, 2018 Awoke to crackling thunder & lightening storm, mixed with intermittent rain. Auntie M and I sat on the patio watching it for a bit. Left Shreveport packed with sweet hugs and kisses from Auntie M about 10:30 and headed to Quitman, Texas to visit JoAnn, Michael and Brittany’s paternal grandmother, who is very sick.
Took the 220W to I-20W where speed limit was 75 mph. Love it! The weather was confused along the way, to rain or not to rain. Stopped for a restroom break and ice coffee (yum!) and there was what appeared to be a real stuffed tiger encased in glass. Sadness instead of awe hit me. No picture!
Drove through Longview at speeds ranging from slow to slower before arriving in the small East Texas city of Quitman; 2016 population – less than 2,000. I was able to visit briefly before Bruce took JoAnn to the hospital for a few days of testing. I wanted to do what I could to help out while they were gone, so I focused on house cleaning, especially in her bedroom. Washed curtains and all bedding, vac’d and mopped, starting cleaning out refrigerator, and kept TV on for company. I also cleaned my truck in and out, finally. Couple dimples from recent hail, but they’re just beauty marks like her owner.
I love the greenery around her beautiful home and have seen lots of bunnies, lizards, squirrels and birds. Scott says there’s a terrible problem with moles and gophers, so there are holes here and there through the yard, and he has a few traps set. I enjoyed spending time on her patio, which I understood was one of JoAnn’s favorite spots too. There was one day she came out and sat for a few minutes. That was before she went back in the hospital. I was so glad it was a pretty day for her. Scott’s done a wonderful job keeping up the landscaping.
Typical for Texas, 40% chance precipitation resulted in about 40 big rain drops. It’s been good to see stores I’ve missed; Brookshires is right down the street. I picked up ice-cream at DQ a couple times for JoAnn.
Went to Mineola, less than 15 minutes down the road, to Walmart. Since cell service droppage is happening during travels, I bought a Garmin GPS. Store price showed $149.99, but googled it and found same store was offering in store pickup at $119, so they price-matched. Win!
When JoAnn got home, my main focus was to keep her comfortable. I was glad that while I was there, Bruce was able to go home to Margaret in Duncanville for a few days. JoAnn was in constant pain and it was heartbreaking. When she had good, clear moments, I loved our chats. We damn near talked about anything and everything. We read, took a shower, rubbed her feet with lotion, watched a little TV, and told really bad jokes. She hardly hate anything more than a few bites, of anything, over hours. Her moments without pain were too few. Every time she asked if it was time for a pain pill, I told her yes. She went back in the hospital and was diagnosed with advanced cancer. Very grateful to have had the opportunity to visit her. I’m hopeful family comes together for her sake. It seems only Bruce, Margaret, Virgil and Scott give a shit. Plan on heading to San Antonio tomorrow.