Thursday, February 26, 2015

February 26th 2015 Challenge

Hi, it’s Christina –

Good Morning! Phew, it’s been a heck of a few days, and even though I hate to say it, I’m waiting for the last shoe to drop. “IT” usually comes in threes, right (or in my case, multiples of three)? Seriously, what are the chances of having two funerals in one day?

Screwy streets!
Paulie, Dani and I went out to PA for our friend Carl’s mother’s viewing on Tuesday night. Let me tell you, I do not enjoy driving in Pennsylvania. The roads in Bristol are so screwy, I, and the GPS, couldn’t figure out which road was the correct one. I had to do a few Uies, and after my third attempt to get on the correct street, drove over the little island to get there. I’m sure the whole tie I was cursing “damn PA signage” the drivers around me were cursing “crazy Jersey driver”. By the time we got to the funeral home, I was twitching.

St. Michael's
Yesterday’s funeral was at the Ukrainian church in Manville (the next town over), but then the burial was all the way in Jersey City, an hour away. Don’t get me started on the hearse driver. You’d swear he’d never had to lead a line of cars. The yo-yo blew through the EZPass lane at one of the tolls, leaving half of the funeral procession in the dust, right at the point where the driving directions got complicated. By the time everyone found the cemetery, the service was over.

Oh, and that’s another thing, they started the service with less than half of the attendees present. Yeah, you guessed it, I opened my big mouth to the funeral director. The family was livid, and I can’t say I blamed them (at the funeral director, not me). This would have never happened if the director’s father was still running the business…I’m just sayin’.

I have a Slovak doll
just like this one.
My Ukrainian is SO rusty, I was only able to catch every third or fourth word during the service, but it was enough to keep me in place in the program. My friend (aka little sister), Christina, said she was impressed that I was following along so well. Dumb luck, I assure you. When you don’t use a language frequently, even if you were fluent at one time, you lose it. It’s a damn shame.

I desperately tried to hold on to Slovak, to the point I wouldn’t let my grandmother speak to me in English; but now that she’s been gone for over six years, my Slovak has deteriorated to next to nothing. My Ukrainian “family” is still around, but when I get a chance to see them, they all speak English to me. I guess they figure it’s been so long, I would have no clue what they were saying, and unfortunately at this point, they’d be right.

See, not easy to read...
My husband’s grandmother died in 1997, so my German is hopelessly lost as well. I am reduced to only being able to pick out certain words or phrases (as I do in French, Spanish, and Italian) to get the gist of what’s going on. As for Ukrainian, I was never able to read it, so there’s no hope there. Heck, lately I don’t even lay claim to having a command of English.

The knoll in the town center
Bar Harbor, ME
If I were ever offered a superpower, it would be for my brain to retain all the knowledge it has absorbed over the years. I have no problem recalling every minute detail of a day in August 1983, when I was with a friend in Bar Harbor and we played with a basset hound named Belle in the park in the center of town; or a trip to Great Adventure (Six Flags) on July 7th, 1977 with my aunt and her friends; or countless other obscure snippets of my life, and yet I cannot retain something which would be infinitely more useful. It’s frustrating to say the least.

How about you? Do you have something you wish you could remember better, or still be able to do? Do you have some trick to retain something you want to hold on to, or to get it back after you thought it was lost? I’d love to hear your stories.

I hope you have wonderful day, and happy writing!

Your Next Challenge is:

Easy come, easy go.

You have ten minutes (be honest). There is no right or wrong, just write. Spelling and punctuation don’t count, and NO ONE is allowed to criticize what someone else has written. Go.