The Commander

I remember when I started calling my moom “The Commander” (spring of 2004) but I don’t think I could put the “why” into words if I tried. She wasn’t [usually ;-)] an overbearing person or anything. But she did run her life the way she wanted to. Make no mistake.

It was the summer after Grandroobly died (2006) that we were on our way into the post office up here in Siberia and a woman wearing a gold sequined baseball cap was coming out. I did a double-take and so did The Commander. I’m not sure why it was the right thing. The Comm’s taste in clothing and furnishings and things has always been quite understated. But I thought she *needed* a gold sequined baseball cap and so I was off googling for one in short order. And she would occasionally get a kick out of wearing it.

I can’t remember whether we did four or five runs down to Freighter View today but we had The Comm’s apartment emptied out in pretty short order. We did all of this with the Frog Hopper (Subaru Outback for those who aren’t intimately familiar with the current Landfill Vee-hickle Fleet). This was possible because Freighter View is exactly .91 miles down the escarpment from the Squatter’s Paradise. If it were even a 5-10 mile drive, we’d’ve probably had to rent or borrow (our fave funeral guy even offered his van! Er, I’ll bet he doesn’t make that offer to everyone…) but this was very do-able. When I applied for an apartment for The Comm at FV, I put down my preference for a 1-bedroom unit. I was thinking she would be there for a few years or more. But, since there was a bit of a wait list, I also said we would take the first available unit. Wouldn’t you know, the first unit that opened up was a small studio but it was also the most gorgeous room in the place. It has two walls of windows offering a wonderful view of the lake freighters entering and leaving the Soo Locks. When she was offered a chance to move to a larger apartment, she turned it down and I totally agreed.

Although we had finished the schlepping by mid-morning today, we were both absolutely totally utterly exhausted! The GG clonked out on the couch for a couple hours. I actually kind of wanted to do something like that but the only time I ever nap during the day is on the beach and then only in certain kinds of weather conditions. So I took off for a little drive along the waterfront et al.

After we recovered a bit, we drove out to the moominbeach to return the little dorm-sized refrigerator The Comm had been using to its home in the garage there and then we both had enough energy to actually start going through *stuff*. The Commander was the antithesis of a hoarder. She spent the last six years sorting stuff and getting rid of it so that *I* would not have to do it. I am ecstatic about that but she lived in this house for something like 40 years and I know from experience how hard it is to get rid of everything. She did a great job but there is work to do here. But we will not have to obtain a dumpster! That will be a topic for another day (or not or whatever). Thank you Moom!

And then I went through the *23,000* photos I have on iPhoto (note to self…) to put together a slide show for the visitation tomorrow. I also posted them on Flickr, so click here if you are interested. I did not caption anything, no time…

So we are here at the Squatter’s Paradise waiting for the Mean Old Grunchie Old Grinchie to show up. There is bad TV on because I need noise and that is about all.

Love y’all and thanks for all the wonderful comments,

5 Responses to “The Commander”

  1. Margaret Says:

    This photo makes her look very commanding! 🙂 I love the gold sequined cap. Very quirky. You can’t even imagine how wonderful it was for her to leave you little to go through. We had a TON of stuff when my MIL died. She was a marginal hoarder.

  2. Uncly Uncle Says:

    I did not realize how much you had to move or I would have shot up there. I had time.
    I did end up at the XCHQ. Talked to Lynn a bit. Told her about Fran. She said to give you guys her regards.

    Don’t know if I can make it up there tomorrow. I have a Board meeting on Tues.
    See ya.

  3. Pooh Says:

    So many wonderful photos — some made me tear up, but more made me laugh. What a wonderful smile Fran had, at least when she wasn’t making a grimace. Hugs!

  4. jane Says:

    oooh! you’ve got the picture of Fran ‘commanding’ lunch with all the kids in the old cabin. my favorite!

  5. Kathy Farnell Says:

    Anne, I think the the sequined hat would look good on you. Hope you will were it.