I took my carpenter-son home yesterday. He'd been here all week helping to finish the Peck house. He's good! I think he earned a fair wage as well.
Anyhoo, he wanted to stop in Redding to pick up some groceries at Winco. I'd never shopped there but holy shit, what a zoo! Low prices, but a real chaotic warehouse-type atmosphere. [I'd rather shop at The Nuggett..a pleasant experience where THEY bag my groceries...I'll pay the price]
Jer was being extra careful to only put a few items in the cart. I suggested he buy what he needed to get by for a month...we'd happily pay. At my encouragement, we filled up a huge shopping cart..and then some. He kept saying "this is a blast mom". He was beaming the entire time. He was literally like a kid in a candy store. We even got his old dog, Sava, a new bed.
Well, after the sweat equity of bagging all of those groceries, we headed the 45 miles to Dunsmuir, a lovely little town right in the mountains. As we drove down main street, a couple of little kids yelled at him, "where is Sava?" Jer yelled back, "she's at the babysitters". He said that they live in the neighborhood and often stop out front [with their mom] to pet the dog.
We walked into Jer's cute little house to unload the groceries. It smelled clean..and it was clean! Even the bathroom. I asked him why he can't clean up after himself when he's home. He explained that he reverts to childhood when he's in Sacramento. I remind him that he was a tidy child...a grin grows over his face.
I open the fridge and there is one lone jug of water and a bottle of half-used ketchup...and a bowl of something with fuzz on it. His cupboards are empty too...except for a half-bag of elbow macaroni, some ramen noodles, and a can of WD-40.
We load his freezer up with enough meat for two months and I leave him to arrange his cuboards with the bounty of food we'd just bought. I told him I'd help him put it all away...but I knew he'd have a great time doing that by himself. "Mom, I will be eating like a king. Tell me again how to cook that talapia before you go..write it down, and tell me what to do with the frozen shrimp. I can't believe I have shrimp in my freezer. It's the shits..wait till my friends see this. All this food! Thanks alot mom. It's gonna be fun to arrange my shelves. I'll keep opening my fridge just to look at it." I gave him unsolicited advice before I left and then apologized. He said, "it's okay..you're my mom".
It's worth noting that Jer has lived in some pretty desperate places, mostly due to poor choices and drug addiction. For many years he fended for himself...as I was doing the very 'tough love' stuff. That's a whole 'nother story. I'm feeling too happy to talk about it now.
With that, I headed back home feeling satisfied that I'd kept him fed and hoping that work picks up for him. Looks like he'll have a job building a house in Weed that will last for over a month...a good thing, with winter approaching up there. The kid/man loves to work...he's got the family work ethic for sure...which came straight from my mom, Dee.