August 6, 1999
Lifestyles of Dave & Terri

Hi, Puss.

Just a few *items* I want to run past you before you arrive tonight. I think it might be easier if I explain a little bit about the way we live before you get here, rather than have you arrive and be surprised or confused by our behavior.

(Don't worry. It's nothing bad. We always ask the gods to bless the goats before we sacrifice them in the bathtub. Our hair is mostly growing back. And we almost never grocery-shop in the nude anymore.)

I want you to know, first of all, how excited and happy I am that you're coming to visit. I'm not going to bullshit you: it's gonna be a tight squeeze, fitting three adults into an apartment the size of your dad's garage.  But I think we can handle it ... and I think we're going to have fun in the process. It'll give us an excuse to drag you all over the Bay Area, for one thing. And for another, it's going to give you and me a chance to spend some long overdue Mother/Daughter time together. I think that's the thing I miss the very most about not living in TicTac: spending time with you. You may be nearly eighteen years old, but in *my* heart you're still that wobbly little one year old with applesauce all over her face, hanging onto my pants leg and pulling herself up to her feet in the Kirkland kitchen.

David and I are going to make every effort to make your visit as fun and relaxing as possible. There are no real expectations of you here. When we're at work during the day, we want you to feel free to sleep, loaf, wander around the island, goof around on the computers, try on our clothes, read, watch TV, listen to music, eat, relax, hang out at the pool, annoy our neighbors and make yourself completely at home. Our home is your home. On the weekends and evenings, when we go out to eat or go sight-seeing, we'll do whatever YOU think sounds like fun. Even ... [swallowing hard] ... shoe-shopping.

This is your special week.

We will give you as much privacy as possible, given the crunched conditions we'll be living in. I think I mentioned that the bathroom is in our bedroom. This shouldn't really be a problem, at least not for us: if you need to use it while we're sleeping, you'll just open the bedroom door and tiptoe past our bed to the bathroom. David could sleep through a train-wreck, so you don't have to worry about "disturbing" him. And there will be plenty of time, while we're at work during the day, for you to take those 40-minute showers and pluck those remaining eleven eyebrow hairs and do all your other bathroom stuff. 


We go to bed around 10 p.m. most nights, although that may not be the case while you're here. I get up at 6 a.m. and David gets up an hour later. My morning routine is remarkably unchanged from the way you probably remember it: shower, coffee, e-mail, blow-dryer, Maybelline, dress. (Except I don't call and threaten taxi cab dispatchers anymore. And I don't have Gatorade and Imodium A-D for "breakfast.") We leave the apartment for work at 8 a.m., and then we're usually home by about 6 p.m. or so. You will have a set of apartment keys, so you can come and go as you please. We'll also give you a map of the island and lots of bus fare, in case you decide you want to *explore* a little on your own.

I do want to warn you that Friday nights are usually sort of bumpy for us. David works in the classified ad department for a local newspaper, and Fridays are his most stressful work days. Friday is usually a pretty long day for me, too ... especially when The Little Boss Who Could has recharged his cell phone. So by the time we get home that evening, we're both sorta frazzled and grumpy. After we pick you up tonight and get your bags and return to The Castle, it's likely that we're just going to want to have a snack and talk a little bit and go right to sleep. Just wanted to give you fair warning about that.

Saturday morning I'll probably be up and making noise by 7:00 or so. Sunday we can sleep in a little ... IF Upstairs Neighbor Guy allows it.

I do get tired very easily these days ... in part because I'm still recovering from a lifetime of alcohol and drug abuse, and my body is still seriously confused ... and in part because I've been sick lately. Don't be surprised (or offended, or weirded-out) if I fall asleep in the car occasionally, or if I curl up and take a nap at odd hours of the day and night.

Your smoking shouldn't be too much of a problem, as long as you keep it as far away from the apartment/the car/wherever *I* happen to be as possible. (How would you feel about the roof of our apartment building?)  I'm finally starting to get over this last nightmarish bout with bronchitis, and I really REALLY do not want to get sick again. I know you'll understand.

Anyway ... that's about all I can think of for right now. I'm thrilled to pieces that we're going to have this chance to be together, and that you're going to get to know David a little better, in the process. He is a wonderful person, and I credit him for a lot of the good changes I've made in my life. I love him very much. Likewise, I want him to get to know my beautiful, sensitive, wonderful daughter, who I also love very, very much.

Looking forward to seeing you tonight. You won't be able to miss us in the airline terminal: we'll be the naked bald people, covered in goat blood.




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