What To Do With My Strength Anyway

RAI Internationale burbles in Italian as I do little chores. The explosion in Lagos is no less horrible for the language gap. Cars and people are still on fire. Young men driving around Mogadishu in pickup trucks with machine guns is a recurring nightmare. Then there’s this week’s Italian government scandal. I might Nair my mustache in self-defense.

I could swear Atillio the Talking Testa said Dracula’s castle was sold. Or maybe it was Winona Ryder. My Italian isn’t so much rusty as rusted shut. But I have patience.

This morning, I was wide awake and nervous before 6. It was dark out and creepy in, so I laced up my sneakers and went walking in the pre-dawn fog. I could barely make out gray figures of other people and dogs walking and running in the park. Being outdoors in the dark holds no terror for me – it’s peaceful and I am sure of myself – as opposed to shivering indoors, looking out at the night. The air was cool and damp and walking at a brisk pace was a little like breathing, drinking and marching uphill. Both ways. On my way back, I barged in on the cats upstairs who had a whole apartment to themselves but not quite enough food and water while their people were gone for a week. Their people left three litter boxes for two gatos and a box of homemade biscotti for me. We’re all glad that wasn’t reversed.

Mostly what I did today was rest. I ate a little. Cleaned a few things. Read the blogs. Napped. Scratched Larry, the little black cat bent on stealing your soul. Napped. Ate a little. Miss Sasha called me at least three times to discuss hand signals we can use during phone calls with Mom, which worked great when Mom called to invite me over for dinner. I was honest. I said I needed rest. Then I lied and said Miss Sasha was coming over my house and could she get a move on? I’d send me to my room…but I’d be there. And I’m clearly a bad influenza.

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