Monday, 7 December 2009

Business as usual, i.e messed up!

Over the last couple of days, we have been dealing with mundane yet important matters regarding the Christmas period.

Every year, in December, my family has held a memorial service for my grandfather, who died in 1996. My father is very keen on this and has insisted that everyone be together for this occasion. It's the equivalent of a religious holiday for him (we can talk about the morbidity of this another time). My brothers have managed to worm their way out of it a couple of times in the past but, as far as I know, without fail, I have turned up every year to entertain my father and grandmother's friends as they pretend they are celebrating the life of someone long dead while scoffing all of our food (cynical? moi?).

In any case, my Grandmother was desperately hoping that my dad had forgotten about it this year and that, if she kept her mouth shut, the appropriate window of time would pass without the memorial taking place. Seriously, this is her husband we are talking about, and even she is fed up of it.

But, lo and behold, as soon as my father's chemo schedule was set (which he had the first dose of yesterday, by the way) he was talking about dates for the memorial. It usually happens on the last Friday before Christmas. Only problem is that on the 21st he is having chemo in Geneva. So the 25th it is! It is a Friday, after all.

Now, my mother has some serious objections to memorials this year, anyway. Throughout these last few months, with my father's immune system being compromised, no one has been allowed near him if they had a cold, sniffle, funny coloured tonsils, etc. Surgical masks are given out like sugar lumps with your coffee. So the idea of him standing outdoors, in midwinter (albeit Israeli winter), surrounded by 100 people who will be coughing on him and then inviting them all back to a very small flat hardly seems sensible. But apparently catching a virus that could kill him does not faze my father if it is in the name of a service to remember someone who is already dead.

So, in short, the argument is ongoing. There has been shouting and crying and my grandmother is about to add her considerable gravitas to the discussion.

In the meanwhile, I have prices for 9 different flight options, and my fiancee is losing her rag, as we can't tell her mother whether we will be turning up for Christmas in Dorset.

Otherwise, I think the chemo is ok. He is clearly impatient to get on with something. He just happens to be making our lives difficult in the process!

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