Day Sixteen…A Day to Drink

I’m thinking as hard as Mondays are, Tuesdays are the hardest days. Even though Monday is a travel and radiate day, I’m coming off Sunday, which is a day of resting, and relaxing in my own home, which does make it a bit easier. On Tuesdays I feel sick because I’m lonely, and lonely because I’m sick. I have friends that are with me, and who visit…it’s not about that, it’s about not feeling like I have the energy to do for myself. On this Tuesday, I feel like a sick person , not like a person who is sick…but a patient…this is feeling I know very well, and it puts me in a funk.. I have three more weeks of Proton after this week, but only three more Tuesdays. Yayy!

Proton is at 5:50P today, another late one…this is good, maybe they even plan it this way. When you’re this far into treatment, you need more time to rest. All I can think about since I got up in the morning is the Magical Slurpee. At around 3P, I decide to venture out to the 7-11…it’s about five blocks away. It’s hot, it’s sunny, but I feel good about being able to get myself out and about. I arrive, pay my $1.59 (so worth it), and almost immediately I start to feel the Slurpee’s restorative powers. I enjoy the walk back while sucking on my Coke fluff. I mount the stairs to my apartment (I’m looking forward to lying down in air-conditioning), I put my key in the apartment door lock, and realize that the bottom knob lock is locked. Uh oh, it’s never been locked before (I purposely keep it unlocked), but somehow inadvertently the lock on the knob must have been turned. I try the top lock key in the knob and it doesn’t work. I don’t panic, but my mind starts to race with possible solutions. The Building Manager? I don’t have his number. My friend who usually lives in the apartment? She’s in LA, but may know something about the lock that can help me. A locksmith? Too soon for that? The old lady downstairs? “Yes”, I think “Why not her?” She seems to know everything, she must have a key or at least the Building Manager’s number”. As I trudge down the stairs to her apartment, I worry if she still may think I am a paper-stealing suspect. I knock on her door. She appears in a fuzzy pink bathrobe, but looking perky enough. I explain my key story to her. She asks me into her apartment and tells me that she was just about to pour herself a Gin and Tonic., “Would I like one?” “No thank you” I say. I think to myself it’s a little early for drinking ,… it’s 4:00 in the afternoon; but I also think that this convivial offer is one that she would make only to an innocent person, not a criminal. This seemingly casual, matter-of-fact way in which she offers this mid-afternoon drink may explain a couple of things about her behavior,… if maybe lets say she starts drinking earlier in the day and perhaps drinks until later in the evening….just a thought.

She offers to call the Building Manager for me, but qualifies this by saying he never picks up his phone. I’m wondering if he doesn’t pick up for everyone, or does he just not pick up for her? Doesn’t matter, it’s worth a try. She calls,…no answer and no way to leave a message. I call my friend who usually lives in the apartment. No answer, I leave a message. The old lady suggests that I try a credit card on the door. She even is willing to demonstrate on her own door, until she realizes that she doesn’t have the right door for this MacGyver technique.

After a few more minutes, and just short of calling a locksmith to help me, I decide to go up and try the door again…maybe there was something I could have done, but didn’t. I try one key, no luck. I try the second key. Bingo! The door opens. Can’t tell you the relief that pours over me. I must have tried the same wrong key twice the first time around. I yell downstairs to the old lady to let her know. I thank her for her help. Proton in an hour. I’m exhausted. I need another Slurpee!