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Foot Fever And The Van PDF Print E-mail
Written by Eloise Foster Latoof   
Friday, 01 August 2008 14:44

I'm sitting here in a reclining chair, trying to get comfortable with my foot elevated.   I am sort of reminded of an old movie.   It's where a guy is 'laid up' with an injury and sees a lot of neighbors' comings and goings.  Things he wasn't supposed to see. You know that wonderful old movie, and all of the mayhem which ensued.

Enough of that.   Back to me and my foot.   My husband put pillows on the footstool, brought me coffee, my writing material, and the telephone so I could get mileage for my infirmity when my friends called.   My injury became so embellished with each call, I prescribed myself a walking cane--or even, maybe a wheelchair.   Yeah, a wheelchair.   And lots of attention. 

"Honey, I'm ready for another cup of coffee, please.   And maybe a ham sandwich.   And if you could, will you please adjust the air-conditioning, darling?   The pain is making me warm.   Do you think I have foot fever?   Look, it's very swollen and bruised looking, don't you think?"   Note, I do say "please."   Finally, after exhausting my husband with waiting on me, and my friends for listening to the endless details of my critical injury, I turned my mind to events in my life over the past few days.  

Actually, before I get into that, I want another detail made perfectly clear.   My injury was my husband's fault.   Raymond, my husband, has had a 13-year affair.   Another woman would have been easier with whom to compete than his 1995 beloved Oldsmobile van.   It's big, and I can't drive it.   Not because he doesn't want anyone driving his van, which he doesn't, but because I am accustomed to my Miata and its wonderful small size and maneuverability. 

He, however, has loved his van from the day he bought it.   He regularly has it serviced, washed, cream rinsed, and blow-dried.  And then the  unthinkable occurred--van trouble.   In the middle of this hot summer, his air-conditioner system went out--again.   Now we live in the hottest and most humid climate imaginable.   We live in New Orleans.

"Well", I said,  "get it fixed."   He waxed and waned over whether it was reasonable to put so much money into a 13 year old van.  I again had more advice.  "Get a new van.  Get a life without that damn old van!"  

But he didn't.   Didn't get the air fixed, didn't get a new van, didn't, didn't, didn't.   I nagged.   "If we have another hurricane and have to get out of town, I'm not going with you in a hotter-than-Hades van.  I'll take my chances at home."   You see, we had evacuated for Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in his van.   He retorted, "Well, I can't even get in that impossibly baby car of a Miata you have.   Why don't you get a new car?"  

"New car?", I say,  "Why my car is an original 1990.   The first year of the Miata!"   Well, these conversations went on for a few weeks with neither of us making any headway.   He was still driving his van without air-conditioning, and I am in my beloved baby Miata.   We were at an impasse.   So began the silent treatment.   I didn't even cook supper for him for a few nights.   And I always cook supper for him.   I really believe that gave him pause to re-think his stubborn position.

Soooo, he called me from a car dealership a few days later with these words, "I bought a new car and traded in my van."   He arrived in full glory--pouting and moping in a 2009 brand new car which was indistinguishable from any of the multitudes on the road.   And it had all of the fancy-pants things a new car can have, if he could only figure out how to work it.   And all he said was, "I hate it!"   And I did too.   We get so set in our ways, I guess.

The next two days were very quiet around our home.  Neither one of us drove the new car.   He seemed terribly depressed and this bothered me.   I finally said, after having been assured that he wasn't ill, "Tell me, please, what is wrong?",  I asked.  He said,  "It's about my van.  I am so sorry I traded it in.   Even one of our grandchildren said the van was like a family member."  That's right.   Bring in a grandchild's regret over the aged, damn van.

I knew what I wanted.   I wanted my husband happy.   And that meant getting his van back.  I called the dealership and negotiated.   The van is now parked back in our garage.   I have been thanked and told, "I love you" so much by my husband for the van retrieval mission. 

But, where does my life as a now possible cripple come in?   On the morning after the return of the blessed van re-claiming, I woke up late and found a note from my husband.   He had written it more that two hours earlier and asked me to call the number he left.   I did.   He was at the mechanic's shop and wanted me to pick him up.  When I realized, sleepily, that he'd been stranded at that shop, I rushed, even ran, to get dressed and go get him.   I hit a leg of a wicker table in the hall with my toe.   And boy, did it really hurt!   Undeterred, I drove to the mechanic's shop, flapping toe and all.   He looked sheepish as I drove into the smallish lot. 

"I'm having the air-conditioning fixed," he said.  My response?   "Get into this little car of mine and let's go home."   He was all smiles as he maneuvered into the minuscule seat and said, once more,  "Thanks for buying my van back.   I love it and you.  And if we need to evacuate again, will you come with me?"  "If I don't need a chairlift and handicapped van, I'll go with you in your van,"  I responded.

I cooked supper that night.

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"Big Ray" is A-OK!
Mean Dean - 08-08-2008 00:47

There is a Ray of hope here!
Livpink95 - 08-06-2008 14:47

Wow!! I hope your toe is feeling better. Thats must have been a hectic day for you!!
floppy toe
angela - 08-02-2008 13:58

your foot really does look bad. however, your sense of humor writing about it made me laugh. it really is a floppy toe, the van really did need replacing, and your car is a baby. however, the laugh over the situation was a great comic relief. i love you very much.
Mean Dean - 08-01-2008 17:47

Go for the wheelchair! It will frequently get you & your pusher into movie theater's for free. I thought the Japanese had quit making the Mazda Miata, which only diminutive Japanese people could fit into the 2 seats. You must be awful brave to drive among SUV's, vans, & semi's - not to mention among Louisiana drivers (the driving report is even scarier).
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Last Updated on Wednesday, 20 August 2008 06:21