"You don't choose your family. They are God's gift to you,
as you are to them." -- Bishop Desmond Tutu
"I can't breathe. I CAN'T BREATHE!"
Chris bolted out of a deep sleep at 2AM last night crying out those fateful words.
In a panic, he bolted out of bed and into the pitch black main salon, and I followed close behind. He leaned over the sink and coughed and wheezed, muttering "I can't catch my breath..."
This was so shocking coming from my husband, my captain. Mr. indestructible. Mr "Walk it off." Mr. 10-times-the-energy-of-everyone-else-in-the-room. Mr. "I don't need no stinkin' doctors."
We were both scared to death.
Slowly his breath returned, and after much discussion and diagnostic detective work, we deduced together that he had regurgitated some of last nights tamale in his sleep, and it had lodged, Janis Joplin-like, in the back of his throat, obstructing his larynx.
Whew. Crisis averted. But this was our second family medical emergency in less than a week.
|Captain Chris and my mom in Puerta Vallarta|
Just a few days ago my Mom came for a very short visit to La Cruz. This 70-something force of nature named Charlotte is even more larger than life than my husband. She could take Betty White in a heartbeat. I fully expect Chris and my mom to outlive me, and the rest of the family, for that matter.
|My adorable, spunky Mom taking photos on the Puerta Vallarta malecon|
When the three of us play hearts, in reality it's Chris vs. Mom. Clash of the Titans. They are two of the most competitive people I know. I'm only included in the game because they need a 3rd person -- I'm merely a useless appendage. It's sad, really. (LOL)
We took Mom to the thursday night "Movies under the stars" in the La Cruz marina amphitheater. After the movie, she tripped and hit her head, knee and both hands on the cold, dark rocks.
(As an aside, if we were in the U.S. and not Mexico, we would have the lawsuit every lottery ticket buyer wishes for -- no lighting, no handrails, dark, steep, unmarked, sharp, hard rocks for stairs. But alas #1, this is NOT the U.S. And alas #2, we are not the lawsuit type.)
Fortunately her head, right hand and knee were all bloodied but without apparent broken bones. But her left hand zigged where it should have zagged. We offered to take her to the American hospital here in the Bay, but she blew us off with her wilted, swollen hand and we took her back to the boat where we wrapped her mangled limb with ice and an ace bandage, loaded her with Advil and tucked her into bed.
Thankfully, the next morning she was laughing and ready for another Gladiator-type hearts game. Thank God her head was OK!
Before returning to California, Mom surprised us by pulling a miniature "Wilson" from her suitcase (made famous from the Tom Hanks movie "Cast Away"), made from a tennis ball instead of a volleyball.
I had made this for Mom at an Oscar Party I threw the year "Cast Away" was nominated for several awards. She had kept it ever since.
|Mom and "Little Wilson" where we fastened him permanently near the companionway. He will be our 3rd crew member, and we're certain, will bring us very good luck!|
We suspect Mom promptly removed my professionally applied ace wrap and tossed it into the trash the minute we left her at the Puerta Vallarta airport.
So -- it's been a shaky week! Family. Watcha gonna do?
And speaking of family -- tomorrow we're pulling up anchor and finally heading south from La Cruz after more than a month living here.
We leave behind in La Cruz Anon, Cyclides, Damiana, Glory Days, Final Escape, Grace, Jace, Lorelei, Jean Marie, Mlawu, Ponderosa, Woofie, Younger Woman, and so many more -- and a special hug to Interabang, Island Bound, Marionetto and Talaria. XOXOXOXOXOXOXO
You have literally been our family over the past weeks. You've cared for us, laughed with us, encouraged us and basically taken up the job of being our family while we're away from the one back home. It's tough to leave!
But leave we must. So, as Willie Nelson says, "We'll see you on down the road..."