*image courtesy of Google Search Engine
“Where is it?” she asked, looking perplexed at us all.
“Where’s what?” we asked as one.
“My list, I left it by the phone.”
“Haven’t seen it,” we chorused not wishing to get involved with her lists and where are they routine.
“How can I get through my day without my list?” she moaned, “I left it there I know I did.”
“We haven’t seen it,” was our standard reply.
“It has my day organised for me. The washing, the hanging out, the breakfast, the time each should happen, your shopping to buy you a birthday present, all the things you said you wanted. Now I’ll be guessing, and you know where that leads me. I could go out to buy you a new bike and come home with a dozen packets of garbage bin liners. You’ll all have to help me find it. Do you want to run the risk of me going out shopping and not remembering and then winging it with something highly inappropriate?”
So, the search for the list began. We looked high and low. On the phone table, under the phone table, beside the phone table even inside the phone table. No sign of it.
Little sister looked in the bathroom, big brother the lounge room, father the kitchen, mother everywhere and me I thought in my head a list of my own of possible places mum might have left it.
The car I thought she often leaves things in the car. No sign of it.
The laundry I thought maybe she put it down there as she was filling the machine. No sign of it.
After some hours and the search becoming more and more frantic it was agreed her list was lost and maybe we should all sit around the table and help her compile a new list.
Mum hated losing anything, and a list was the worst thing as she prided herself on being organised at any one time. There was a lot of wringing of hands and waving of arms, of words spoken in anger, retaliation, past sins resurrected and reminders of the failures we were each guilty of.
With everyone suitably chastised, we took our places around the table.
“Right,” said mum taking a piece of paper from her pocket, “now what was first?”
“Breakfast?” I suggested as my hunger pains were beginning.
“No, I can see it was sorting the washing,” said mum absentmindedly reading from the paper in front of her.
“What’s that you are looking at?” asked dad.
“My list,” said mum.
“Your list?” we screamed.
“Yes, my list.”
“The same one we have been looking for?” asked little sister.
“Yes,” said mum, looking at it, “was in my pocket the whole time.”
To say there was an air of exasperation within our family that day is, to put it mildly. Mum never batted an eyelid over the whole affair. But it did reaffirm our fears our mother was going, if not already was, crazy.