I took a week off of work — my longest vacation in years — and am a bit heartsick over this being the last day. I’m hiding on the balcony, where the weather is finally not overly reminiscent of an armpit, drinking my coffee, getting a bit of sun to fend off rickets. (My vitamin D level was the only ding on my annual bloodwork. Does it seem pitiful that I was so excited to look at my lab results that I ran up the stairs and tore into that letter like it was a Wonka bar containing the golden ticket? I want to embroider it onto a shirt and point at it whenever anyone rolls their eyes at me for being vegetarian. My cholesterol levels always shut ’em up, as they should.)

Louisa is still sick. A bit better, maybe, but only a little bit, though it does still only seem to be a very bad sinus infection. We gave her some anti-nausea meds and took two days off of the antibiotics to see if that helped with her appetite and, in hindsight, that was a mistake. By the next day her nose was in full-gore mode once again. And yet, she still jumps up into bed with me, still bumps her head against my hand, and, if encouraged with much gentle cheering and ear-scritches, will lick at a saucer of mostly-cat-food-gravy. I pity anyone who might overhear me during these meals with her, as I say things that no human should say. Oh, Louisa, this smells so good! Like fishy garbage that has been sitting in the sun for three days! Mm delicious nom nom I think I will eat some if you don’t!

I spent last weekend in New York, a family reunion of sorts, also sort of an extended Irish wake. There were a lot of tears, but also so much love and laughter. I hadn’t seen some of these cousins since I was a kid, and the visit turned a bit into something like the trips we made to New York when I was a kid. The uncles and aunts in one corner, and all the cousins (and now the cousins’ kids!) in another, talking about video games and planning great escapes. My sister was able to be there as well, and being able to literally chase my nephew (thank you, Couch to 5k!) and play hybrid badminton/volleyball/soccer with him, was a victory.

After I got home, Jay and I spent a day in West Virginia following the history of some of his ancestors, and it was a beautiful drive and we saw some wonderful things, but I was struggling against the after-effects of a tetanus booster shot. My arm still hurts, five days later, but the first couple days were the worst. I suppose it’s better than lockjaw, I said, though I am still dubious and annoyed that it put a damper on my week off of work. I felt battered and exhausted and took way too many naps, and yeah, that’s not what I wanted to be doing on my vacation. But all’s well that ends well, and now I am free to trod upon any rusty nails that come my way.

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