If you missed the start of this series, you can find it here. A lot of things will be the same or very similar.
Younger came to sit with Ben when I took Older to work last night. The smoke from the fire was bad and it was still 102°F (39°C) at 6:30pm. They were still up when I got back, Ben had Auntie take him to bedtime. She went home right after. I asked if she could come tonight too, she said she would.
The fire… a news report I read documented four thousand acres burned and ten structures. 0% containment. That was as of 7:00am Sunday, September 6.
I did take pictures. The first picture I took was around 3:30pm on Saturday when I walked to the market. I thought I’d smelled smoke, but the house was closed up, blankets over the windows, trying to keep the 112°F (44°C) heat out, so I hadn’t looked. I was surprised to see it when I walked to market
I kept a watch on it, but not super close. It wasn’t close enough for us to be in danger. My city is in a valley, surrounded by foothills. The fire was burning in another valley south and east behind foothills.
Anyway, as sunset approached I checked the sky. The smoke was blowing north and west. The fire was also moving west.
Particulates in the air make for a dramatic sunset, but the air quality was horrible, it was still ridiculously hot, and I felt horrible at the thought of people losing their homes, or lives.
We know about fires in California, especially SoCal. We have some every year. If we’re lucky, it’s just some vegetation, quickly put out. If conditions are unfavorable, well… you’ve seen or read about it, I’m sure.
Anyway, I don’t even know what time I took my pill and finally slept last night. I had been dozing in and out of a semi-sleep since I got back from Driving Miss Daisy and getting Ben settled. I did eat, and did my Night Things, but I was drained from the heat and the injury and 2020 in general.
When I woke up and grabbed my phone to check the time, I was SOOO hoping it was 3am and I could go back to sleep. Unfortunately, it was 5:36am. I could’ve dozed for a while longer but there wasn’t much point, so I got up. I got the coffee going, turned the AC down from 75 to 62, and switched the one in Daughter’s room on and set it at 70.
Ben and Zeus were waiting for me when I came out of the baño a little after 6am. I put food down for Zeus and opened the side door, got Ben’s stuff, and uncovered, lit up, fed and paparazzi’d Sven
Then I checked out the eastern sky through the bathroom window screen and from the broken, blockaded back gate.
It was pretty, but it was smokey too. There is ash over everything outside. It’s not as bad as the Cedar Fire of 2003, but still yucky.
We went and got Daughter on time. As we were getting off the freeway, I went to the right instead of continuing forward. Ben asked for Starbursts earlier and I’d told him we’d get them after we got Mom, that’s where I was headed. He was getting upset about the change in route. Autism can be like that. Going a different way is often very upsetting. I told him we’d get his Starbursts then go back and go the “right” way. As Daughter got out of the car, he asked for a toy car too. We told him 7-11 doesn’t have toy cars, just candy.
She got back in the car, we went back to the freeway so I could drive home the “right” way. We got home and came inside. Dogzilla had gotten into the trash. I scolded him and told him he was very “naughty” and wouldn’t pet him. He tried to look like he was ashamed of misbehaving but, he wasn’t and he couldn’t fake the look. Big Dumb Dog!
Either Ben was upset by me scolding Zeus or about not getting a toy car, or going the wrong way, or just because… whatever reason, he went to bang his head on the door and fall down. DANG IT!
Then he was telling me to get dressed and go to the store for a toy car. Then he was standing on the back of the couch, trying to force open the nailed-closed window. Ugh! It wasn’t even 8am yet and I was not gonna start a day Guessed to be 110°F (43°C) with problems. Obsessive autism problems. I got my wallet and walked over to the market. I got a bunch of different plastic, filled with candy, cheapo toy cars, and a couple more Starbursts.
I handed him the bag. He said “Thank you, Gramma.” and that was that. Obsessive thought, need, want… whatever, fulfilled. Or bratty child getting his way. I didn’t know, and I didn’t care. I wanted to get through the day with minimal drama and stress.
Daughter went to her room to sleep and I began a long day of Couch Sittin. Ben was very energetic all morning. The half seroquel he used to take in the morning was moved to his bedtime meds. I think we might need to move it back to morning. Especially since he starts really pacing and getting agitated around 10am every day and seems to chill out after he takes the seroquel at 10:45. I moved it to 10:30 today.
Things started to calm down around 11am. Ben dumped his chalk in front of the Bath Room and started doing his thang.
He got back on the couch several times, eating a snack, surfing his tablet, drinking water or diet coke… late morning and early afternoon were definitely better than early morning.
The pill splitter we have sucks! When I tried to split an adderall in half for the 1pm dose, half was fine, the other half was crumbly. I put the good half back in the bottle and the crumbly bits in a medicine dosing cup. You know, the little cup on top of a bottle of cough meds or Nyquil… one of those. Then I added water and swished it around. Then he drank it. And the next, and the next. It took three times of adding water to get the crumbly half into him. I think next time that happens, I’ll just dump the crumbles into his mouth. I’m sure it doesn’t taste great but he’s so used to taking meds, and he used to take everything crushed and mixed, this has got to be better.
I texted Younger to see if she could still come by after work this evening, she said yes. The funny thing is, she sent me a text at the exact same time. It was the first time we’d talked. She and I do stuff like that a lot. I think about her and she texts or calls.
A little after 2:30 Older Daughter came out and took over Couch Sittin Duty. I gave my report and went to get Horizontal. Everything was groovy for a little while.
Around 3:30 Ben decided he needed to be outside, busting stuff. He started on the cinderblock property wall, I got him away from the wall but then he jumped into his dirt hole and started on the cement walkway. That would’ve been acceptable if it wasn’t 104°F outside, and smokey too.
The wind was blowing the smoke south and west today. Anyway, I stayed outside with Ben and kept gently, trying to talk him into going back inside the house. Finally, a little after 4pm I was able to convince him. He doesn’t realize he’s overheating. His medications also make him sensitive to the heat. We have to watch him, heatstroke is a very real danger to the little knucklehead.
Back inside the house, I made him drink water, then rewarded him for coming inside with a diet coke. Daughter had put his “orange chicken” (Yes! The TGIFriday’s that was his favorite kind of frozen chicken nuggets. They had it at WallyWorld) in the toaster oven, so it was done by 4:30.
Younger gets off work at 5:30 and is coming straight over from work. No stress about getting Ben to cooperate when I have to Drive Miss Daisy. Then Older is off for the next four days.
Tonight’s song… think of someone you don’t like, then play it.
Thanks for stopping by today. It was kind of a mixed day, but overall good. A few little bumps and hiccups, but that’s life. The heat is supposed to ease off a little bit. I hope they can get the fire contained before the Santa Ana winds come and all of the back country burns like in 2003. Come on back tomorrow. We’ll see what’s what and go from there. ¡Hasta mañana!