Thursday, August 16, 2007

Don't Let Thomas In

"Goooood Morniiing, Portland!" I woke, groggily finding my grandmother moaning at the cheerful radio greeting. I guess if 5 am doesn't come easy for me, it certainly wouldn't for her either. We lay silently, both wanting to just ignore the exuberant weather forecast of a 90 degree day. Nana rolled over and sniffed the air. I sniffed too--I thought something seemed a little off. "Do you smell a skunk?" she asked. "YES! That's what that is." I wasn't sure if I should mention that I thought the room smelled nasty, so I was glad she'd both brought it up and figured out the source. We thought for a second, and she woefully said, "I sure hope the cat didn't get in a fight with it." I groaned. Then I laughed, picturing my 76 year old grandmother trying to give her cat Thomas a tomato juice bath. It may get rid of the smell, but it could be more trouble than it's worth. She and I both got up, with her worrying about the skunk getting under the house. I went into the guest room where my Mom & Dad were sleeping. I asked them about it, and mom said, "Yeah, Gary already noticed that. He was wondering whether it was Tim." We all burst out laughing, and I looked at Tim in his sleeping bag. At age nine, anything is possible--including smelling not unlike a skunk. But it wasn't him. I closed their window, as it was getting cold, and as I did so, I saw a black & white animal. The skunk! No. It was Thomas. Whew. I certainly didn't want more stink. But later, as we found out, Thomas wasn't quite free of odor either. He proved that he'd had some tango with that skunk in the wee hours, and certainly didn't understand why we wouldn't want him in the house. As my uncle Greg would later say, "But it stinks out there!"


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