Anyway, we landed safely in the Lou and were quickly installed in the rectory of St. Elizabeth. It gave me mad nostalgia for the rectories of my youth, the brick and the wallpaper and the little kitchen where crisis-people come to drink tea and the way the main floor meandered ranchily over the land. When I was little I lived in a rectory that was so huge that I only ever seemed to find my room by accident. One day I went into the basement and opened a door, and the room was filled with nuns who were sewing a quilt. I had never seen them before and I never saw them again. This rectory was a little like that. The priest who lived there previously was crazy--when my father and mother moved in, the walls were covered with collages that were scribbled over with amazing sentences like: "Jesus came on the fire truck and FROZE THEM OUT," and "There is a teenager inside me, and his name is RAGE." Such...unfortunate phrasing, priest. Never say it again!
My birthday was the 27th and I went creeking with my little nieces and nephews. Try to tell a baby what a fossil is, you can't do it! Say, "If you lie down in this creek and pull the mud up over your head and close your eyes, you will fall asleep and then wake up in one million years as a baby-shaped stone," and then watch the baby burst into tears. This is called Education, and a baby needs so much of it.
I flew home the very next morning at 6 o'clock, the hour of hell. A giant ball of fire sleazed up the sky as I watched through my window. (I have called the police about this.) I arrived home and fell into bed and slept for thirteen hours, and when I woke up I was back, a year older, a year closer to waking up as a baby-shaped stone! HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ME.