Saturday, July 5, 2008

the value of silence

I have an elderly relative visiting.

Like the king's mother, once she gets the opportunity to talk, she doesn't stop.

I'm at my wits end. I have the habit, you see, of actually listening to people when they talk. But I can't take that many words in, all day - every day - for days on end. Opinionated snippets of conclusions reached years earlier; the favored story selections about times gone by; unsolicited statements of what I [or others she knows] should do, wear, think, or read.

Yesterday, I finally took Luther upstairs on the pretext of having to get him quieted down before the fireworks started. I left a porchful of people and said goodnight. They did not take the hint - but stayed on for another hour.

This morning, the king took himself off to golf, leaving me here with Luther - quiet again - and the aforesaid talkative relative. I armed myself with some knitting. It's almost as good as a martini at taking that 'edge' off. . . . I find I can hear the same story - the 3rd time now in a 24 hour span - and just smile and nod.

Smile and nod.

At noon, I may allow myself a martini.

Just kidding! [I'll certainly wait until 1500 - grin - maybe. Maybe not.] Let's see. . . . it's almost 11. . . . .

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