We all walk ancientrails. Welcome to the journey.

정말, Seoah

Written By: Charles - Jun• 22•20

Summer and the Moon of Justice

Monday gratefuls: Seoah. Seoah. Seoah. Seoah Seoah. Seoah. A sweetheart. A good heart. Her visit to TJ Maxx and Whole Foods yesterday. Her cleaning the house one last time yesterday. Showing me her tricks. Joe and Seoah. Together again. After 14 days of quarantine. Seoah.

3:30 a.m. Tomorrow. Off to Denver International, down the hill from Shadow Mountain. As Tom said, little traffic. Cool. Still 3:30 a.m. But that’s travel isn’t it? Unusual times. Off to airports. Train stations. Bus stations. I still get that, ooh, I’m going somewhere feeling whenever I do something like this. Pick somebody up. Drop somebody off. Leave really early. Smell the world in the very early morning.

Seoah’s going back to Joe. Back to Singapore, which neither of them like, but where being with each other will help. Though. Still limited movement. And, 14 days in a hotel room, having to wrangle her own food. She bought a lot of instant food at Whole Foods. Cheaper, she says, than ordering out. She literally dumped it into the new Samsonite bag she bought. Not sure whether she plans to repack it or not. I imagine so since she’s very organized.

When she came at the beginning of February, I had a left arm scarred by two encounters with the Murdoch/Kepler teeth storm. Gertie had begun her slow, then sudden glide toward death. Coronavirus reality was still far away. Over there. I didn’t realize it then, but I was very stressed. Tired out. Exhausted.

After one more teeth storm, which took Kate to the emergency room and Seoah to urgent care, Murdoch moved to Bergen Bark Inn for an almost two month stay. Kate lost the tips of two fingers. Seoah had wounds on her hand and on her leg. Due to her agony from cancer we took Gertie to Sano and had her euthanized.

Boy, just writing that took me back, made my heart sink a bit. Those first weeks of her visit were difficult. Seoah took charge of the kitchen, nursed Gertie, faced up to the need to move Murdoch. The tenor of life changed.

We were beginning to heal. Grieve, yes, but heal in the way grief offers. No longer was there tension about whether Kep and Murdoch would find each other, penetrate flesh, either their own or ours. Murdoch was safe, but away, and the folks at Bergen Bark Inn were very helpful. No longer was Gertie lying on her bed in our living room, panting, crying.

Seoah, Ruth, and Gabe were here for Gertie. We all came together around her, caring for her. Crying together. Our family. Dogs and people. Intense. Beautiful. Sad. Perhaps the moment that we all realized this was our life, our life together. Family life. In families the hard times create bonds, strengthen relationships. Break us down and build us back up. That was February.

Then, the coronavirus began its intrusion into our lives. We wouldn’t see Ruth and Gabe again until April. Locked down. Locked in. Masked. Going through the fear of first trips outside. Safeway with empty produce shelves, no toilet paper (though I had presciently bought two large packages in January), no eggs. No milk. No chicken. Customers looking shocked, uncertain. A certain type of man, and a few similar women, looking brave, or trying, pretending that ideology mattered more than science. Yes, even that early.

I ordered groceries online, had them put in the car by a King Sooper or Safeway pick-up employee. Seoah would go in, masked by Kate. I was afraid. Maybe you were, too?

Seoah, Joe, and I spent many hours working on finding Murdoch a home away from Bergen Bark Inn. Seoah, Murdoch, and I went to Boulder, then Loveland, visiting potential foster homes. Brenton, in Loveland, knew Akitas and worked from home.

Finally, on the day after Governor Polis gave the stay-at-home order for Colorado, Seoah, Murdoch, and I drove to Loveland. On eerily quiet interstates. The l.e.d. signs over the highways all read: Avoid Unnecessary Travel. Well, finding Murdoch a safe place while Joe and Seoah were in Singapore was necessary.

Seoah tried to go home. Joe called and didn’t want her traveling with all the chaos in U.S. airports. We changed the flight. Then, Singapore closed Changi Airport. Missed the next flight. Another date. Kate, the airline whisperer, became familiar with United. Got things sorted, changed. Singapore had an uptick in cases from migrant worker’s packed together in cheap housing. Lock down there. No flights. Changed the flight again. Put it on hold. Finally, Kate made one more call and June 23rd became Seoah’s date to leave. Almost five full months for what was supposed to be a one month visit.

Over that time her cooking, her good spirits, her cleaning allowed both Kate and me to decompress, regather our strength. We’re stronger, calmer. Seoah got us through what was a horrible few months, ones that would that have been exponentially worse without her. Thanks, Seoah. Bon voyage.

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