Day 9, plowing through the to-do

Monday 12/10/18

Forgot to mention that when I met with Jean on Saturday, she gave it as her firm opinion that there was no point in seeing Marian’s ashes scattered. “She’s not there,” she said. So that cinches it: I won’t pay for a “family scattering trip” but rather let Marian’s ashes be scattered anonymously. I sent an email to Marian’s cousin Darlene to that effect, as she and her partner had been interested.

This was only one item in a long to-do list, which I just plowed through today.

A thoroughly squashed to-do list

Some of the items: plan a trip to the DeYoung museum for myself to see their Gaugin exhibit. This is a step in my “do stuff” program. I figure to go to the city via CalTrain and Lyft, and will probably want to do that often, so I needed a Clipper card, and to print out the CalTrain schedule for reference.

Monday is the day for watering plants. Marian watered our extensive collection of houseplants every Monday for decades. In June, before the big operation, she handed that job off to me with careful instructions. I’ve been doing it ever since, but the number of houseplants is declining. I eliminated three ferns from the bathroom that I’ve never liked.

And I feel a lot of responsibility for our prize plant, the 7-foot “ponytail palm” in the huge pot. How to get “Beau” (beaucarnia recurvata) settled in a new home has been bugging me for months. Hopefully it’s settled now; Liz, a niece of Jean’s who is a landscape gardener by trade, has said she’d be glad to take him. She’ll be around next Sunday to pick him up.

I also paid a few bills: ’tis is the season for insurance premiums, four of them that all come due in December. Today I paid the homeowner’s and the big one, the California Earthquake coverage. And again had a little spasm of grief. Marian set bill payment at the Stanford Credit Union, so each of our recurring bills could be paid with a couple of clicks. There it was, “earthquake insurance” as an item in the list of payees. Just fill in the amount and specify when the money should be sent, all thought through and neatly prepared.

Here’s another. Two years ago, for reasons I don’t remember, Marian ordered a couple dozen bulbs for miniature cyclamen, and planted them at random spots all around the front yard.IMG_3524

They are peculiar little beasts: the flowers come up from bare ground in September (and Marian saw them this time). Then the rosette of tiny leaves comes in as the flowers fall off. The leaves get thicker all spring and then disappear in late summer. And unlike some of our attempted plantings, these have settled in and thrived.

Walking in from the car today I saw how all the leaves had popped up in the past week, and somehow that just tore me up. Still does as I write this.



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