“Putting it that way makes me sound like a septuagenarian,” I said to my sister, upon citing random fear of rain among possible reasons not to travel.
“Well, even my mother-in-law doesn’t make decisions like that," my sister countered. “She always says life is for living.”
In an effort to salvage a couple of days of fun and togetherness dubbed Sister Camp--a moniker we may or may not have ripped from my friend Jen-—my sister was trying to sell me on a reasonably complicated last ditch measure culminating in a four hour plus solo jaunt across two states. At the risk of damaging my reputation as an adventurer, I find it necessary to admit that I am not especially keen on driving. I’ll pretty much go anywhere, anytime, but I’d just as soon leave the driving to others. I have no sense of direction, for one thing—isn’t north always straight ahead?—and rely heavily on landmark data, a situation making post-sundown driving a nightmare. And did I mention my feelings on rain?
“Well,” my sister’s voice lost a degree of confidence, “Maybe that’s not exactly what she said, but I’m sure it’s her philosophy.” My sister disappeared from the conversation to conference with her mother-in-law who, coincidentally, happened to be both a septuagenarian and in the room. “Wouldn’t you agree, Mom, that life is for living?”
I could hear a lot of murmuring on the other end of the line as my sister’s MIL consulted with assembled advisers. “It depends what you’re living for,” she said, carefully.
“For?” my sister queried.
“Yes, life is worth living if it’s for the right things,” came the guarded reply.
“Not worth living, Mom, for living,” my sister said. More murmuring ensured.
“What’s this for?” MIL halted the conversation to address my sister.
“My sister might not come because she doesn’t know if it will rain next week, and I told her that life is for living and she should come. Do you not agree with me?”
The room exploded in laughter. “I thought she was quoting me for a book,” MIL replied. “Of course she should come, don’t be silly.”
“Sister, she agrees wholeheartedly with me,” my sister triumphed. “She just thought you were writing about her, and wanted to make sure she was properly portrayed.”
“Tell her I wasn’t writing anything before, but she may have just written herself into a blog post.”
“Mom, you’re going to be on the internet,” my sister called to her MIL. “And as far as you, Sister, you can come to Sister Camp or you can draw the curtains, grab your spectacles, and read the newspaper. Start with the obituaries.”
I have, subsequently, been enrolled at Sister Camp for the past five days. I travel home tomorrow. At last report, the forecast called for storms, but the internet has been on the blink so I may not be able to verify. There are absolutelt no newspapers at Sister Camp.