Doug, Grumpy Doug…
You have been gone for three years. I can hear you saying, ‘I haven’t gone anywhere, I am right here!’ And you probably are…but your here and our here are two different places. At least for now.
Three years, so many things have changed since then. Your wife, Gilda or Angel as you call each other is… well Doug…she is amazing! She is always splashed in color and more driven to make TLC Alzheimer’s Homes a safe haven since you ….took a short stroll to somewhere else. She worries with this Corona stuff but so far things are good. I am sure you could tell us a few things we didn’t know, being a man of science. But I digress.
We miss you. Alan now sits where you once did on the patio outside. We sit and smoke and discuss politics like an old couple when I visit. And no, the patio is still a mess! People keep dropping off things for TLC and it takes a while before we get to it. Gilda has fallen madly in love with Alan’s cats and your bedroom is one of their favorite spots to hang out.
She misses you Doug. Sometimes she gets a bit lonely. But what do you expect being married for over 40 years? And you were not an easy man at all mister! Sometimes I wonder if it’s a generational thing with men of your age, or are all men just weirdos who only calm down in their 70’s? How did she ever manage to deal with all that? Wait, I know the answer. Hers and my Mother’s answer is the same: Jesus. Yes, let’s roll our eyes together when they aren’t looking eh! Hehe
Do you know what I miss most about you? The records you’d play. Although the bagpipe music was a bit much I must be honest. I loved the calmness it brought to us. Gilda completing a crossword while you and I smoked. And when she wasn’t looking you’d sneak me a drink. But she always knew didn’t she?
You have been awol for three years and I guess this is what I wanted to say to you. I still have your atlas with a handwritten note and a picture of you and Gilda in my special box.
Perhaps you didn’t know it Doug….but I was a mess when we met. My life had fallen apart so badly I could barely write music or sing. And then you and Gilda came along and we adopted each other.
Just being able to sit with you, hear you speak and share music and food healed me in ways I couldn’t have foreseen. Gilda often says to me, ‘My girl, you are a different person from the one I met three years ago…’
And I am Doug. Perhaps that’s just Gilda’s heart you know. It’s big enough for anyone to crawl into and stay safe for as long as they need. I am seeing her later today. Yeah, I will sit on my spot on the floor as I always do and think of you. Expect us to make jokes and recall times when you were just the strangest man on the planet okay?
Wonderful, grumpy, difficult you, the smartest fella in the room! Oh, did you like the ink I got as a reminder of you?
See you around DJ Doug, Mr Black, Grumpy Doug. In the meantime….keep Gilda safe. We both know she can sense you around her. I love you in case I never said it before. And when you can look out for me also…
Your friend who became family
…or as Gilda calls me Angel Child. Honestly Doug, can you speak to her about this? I would prefer being called Satan’s Mistress or something cool you know…