My “Master’s Daughter” lives in South Bend, Indiana, approximately 125 miles north of us. We only stayed one night but wanted to see her Army son, who was home on leave.
We visited her from our home, which is about thirty miles south of Indianapolis, a couple of weeks ago. My mother is experiencing some memory loss, especially when she is really tired and nothing tires her out more than a road trip. By the second day of being away from mom’s home, our drive conversation went like this.
Five minutes after leaving daughter’s home, and with another 3 hours plus to go, mom apparently recognized something and said, “Oh, that drive was shorter than I thought, we’re almost home.”
Then, this was the discussion just outside of Indianapolis.
Mom: “Someone’s barbecuing. Can you smell it? Which house is it?”
Five heads crane around looking at a field and a gas station, and wondering why anyone really cares which house is barbecuing. But, a minute later there is a house with smoke coming from the yard. The woman has a super sniffer.
Mom: “What’s that noise? What’s wrong with the car?”
Me: “It’s the road, Mom. The surface is different.”
Five minutes later: Mom: “What’s wrong with the car? There’s that noise, again.”
Me: “No, it’s just the road mom. They had to repair the surface.”
Next time we go over a different surface.
Mom: “There it is again. They do it at every intersection. It’s for safety.”
Needless to say, the surfaces were random.
As we are beginning to enter the Indianapolis area:
Mom, “Oh, there is the Hardees. I wondered where it was.”
Me, “Ah, mom, that is the Hardees in Indianapolis. The one where you live is across from the Arby’s, which is by CVS, right around from your apartment.”
Mom, “We have an Arbys?”
Mom, “This road is like the Dan Ryan.”
Me, “It is an expressway, so, it is a lot like the Dan Ryan only with less traffic. There are empty spaces.”
Mom, “Who was Dan Ryan. Don’t you wonder who Dan Ryan was?”
Me, Silence. I have never once wondered who Dan Ryan was. I have sworn at him a couple of times, but I have never wondered who he was.