Saturday, July 25, 2009

dial m for murmur

Some days are filled with surprises.

Even if there is only one surprise. But a big surprise.

I drove down to Manzanillo today in hopes of finding my debit card in the mail. It was not there. Perhaps in another ten days or so.

But I did get thirteen magazines to add to my reading list. That should about bring me current with past editions.

I know that I am beginning to feel more comfortable with what Melaque offers as life support. When I first discovered Manzanillo's big box stores, I would go to Wal-Mart, Comercial, and Soriano's on each trip.

This trip? Nada. I am finding what I need in my local village.

That was not my surprise.

I did not get it until I got home.

In my Outlook inbox was a MagicJack message -- with no return telephone number.

Odd, that, I thought.

I hit the play button, and on came a chirpy young voice:

Hello, Steve. This is Allison. I'm calling from [garbled] Nursing Home. Your Mom wanted me to call and just let you know she is back in her room, and she's available for the call. All right. Thank you.

Disoriented would be the word.

Now, my name is Steve. The message was to my telephone number. And I have a Mom.

But my Mom should be at her desk in her real estate office, not returning to her room in a nursing home.

I called my brother to see if he was divvying up the loot before he notified me.

He was as shocked as I was. He had heard nothing.

Only one course left: call Mom's mobile number.

S: Hi, Mom.

M: Well, hi. It's good to hear from you. [At least, nothing like, "Glad you got my message."]

S: Um. Where are you right now? ["Who is president" would not have been very subtle.]

M: At my desk in the Clackamas office.

Relief. I felt relief.

I told her the story, and we had a good laugh. I called my brother, and we both had the same good laugh.

And, then, it occurred to me, would Mom have necessarily known where she was? Maybe I should have asked to speak to one of her colleagues.

These are the questions we start dealing with when we become a certain age.

My brother and I are probably blessed that our Mom has the Scottish genes of the Queen Mother. She will probably outlive us all.

And that would not be a surprise.


Constantino said...

I won't even begin to tell you what I do with wrong numbers.......

Steve Cotton said...

Constantino -- Not much, though, to do with wrong number calls left on my message recorder. I am a bit concerned that someone was waiting for the call, and they still do not have it.

Islagringo said...

Exactly. Somewhere somebody's mother is waiting for a call that will never come. Kind of reminds me of when I lived NOB and everytime I would see a dead cat on the road, I would say, "Just think. Somewhere somebody is yelling 'Fluffy! Fluffy!'. Where is that damn cat?"

Steve Cotton said...

Islagringo -- What I found to be particularly weird was calling me by name. I wish the caller had left her number. This is one wrong number I would have taken the time to straighten out.

CancunCanuck said...

How very disconcerting and strange! Glad everything is ok, hope the other Steve's mom gets the call she's waiting for. No way to track down the number or the nursing home? No need to get all Magnum P.I., but a quick inquiry might ease some lovely old woman's mind.

On the other hand, maybe the other Steve is finally glad to pass off his meddling mother to you after years of listening to her verbal abuse and clacking teeth. Just sayin'..... ;-)

1st Mate said...

Nursing home staff are minimally trained and overworked, and it's hard for them after a while to care about the personal details in the lives of their charges. I'm grateful your mom is not in one, at least for now. A day at a time...

Anonymous said...

I use to work at a business that had several phone numbers that were one digit off from some very popular phone numbers. Routinely I would check the messages on Mondays and would find calls from new residents of the local jail asking to be bailed out or looking for attorneys. Othertimes, upset and angry people would be screaming about the loss of their cable tv. The best ones were long detailed stories from the inmates. The real kicker was that it wasn't just a easy place to leave a message, you had to press several digits to pick the right destination...Why they would not listen to the greeting messages is beyond me. Sometime people just do not listen, and also provide a lot of sensitive information at will.


Steve Cotton said...

CancunCanuck -- No way to investigate. The name of the nursing home was so garbled, I would have no way of knowing where in The States or Canada it might be.

1st Mate -- I actually thought of you when I was listening to the message. A far too familiar call.

Anonymous -- My mobile telephone number in Oregon must have been similar to that of a fellow who was in big legal trouble. And I mean BIG. Even though my message clearly stated my name, his attorney would leave the most detailed messages about the fellow's case on my message system. I finally called the attorney's office. The secretary would not let me talk with the attorney unless I was a client -- even when I explained the situation. From then on, I simply deleted the messages when I saw his telephone number -- after I notified the state bar. The messages soon stopped.

Laurie said...

Great story. Just be careful. My grandmother was pleasantly senile in her 80s and 90s. She almost made it to her 98th birthday. In her room at the nursing home, she often thought she was home cooking a pot of beans, or.. more shockingly, tending to another newborn. She was usually in good humor, and she encouraged us to eat the beans or view the baby. So.... be forewarned!

Steve Cotton said...

Laurie -- My mother has sent me a series of photographs to prove that she is not hiding out in a nursing home. The CIA doesn't provide information that good.