#197 – Setting the Table

Some may wonder why I haven’t written further about the relationship counseling between me and my mother-in-law. Oh yes, that cash siphoning fiasco continues from week to week. But Sophia has strictly forbidden me from publishing another word on it. As directed, I’ll refrain from commenting on yesterday’s session with “Dr. Freud” and instead will share the story Ron told me this morning.

As I’ve mentioned before, ninety-year-old Betsy suffered a stroke last month. She’s home now and hopefully on the road to recovery, but she’s still confined mainly to bed. In the weeks following the attack, her granddaughter Tracy (Ron’s wife) has hosted visits from concerned family members. Betsy’s other granddaughter, Maureen, stayed a week around Thanksgiving. Most recently, Betsy’s sole surviving sister, Florence, flew in from Texas for Christmas. She arrived yesterday and departs next Saturday.

This being Florence’s first visit to their current home, Tracy decided to cook a special dinner in her honor last night. The linen tablecloth, the wedding china, the good silverware, and the crystal goblets all made one of their infrequent appearances on the dining room table. After Tracy completed the presentation with a centerpiece of fresh flowers, the décor looked picture perfect.

Tracy felt as surprised as anyone when she led the guest of honor into the dining room and discovered a discordant addition to the table setting. Ron was the first to comment though: “Why’d you put maxi pads next to each plate?”

Of course, the feminine napkins weren’t Tracy’s doing. Instead, their four-year-old son had achieved the tabletop flourish while his mother was otherwise engaged. He’d had good reason too, as everyone agreed once Peter explained himself.

Months earlier, Peter had procured a sample from a package of feminine hygiene products under the bathroom sink. He’d brought the item to his mother and asked: “Mommy, is this a napkin?”

Caught off guard, Tracy’d blurted her first thought: “Uh, that’s right. But it’s a special napkin. We only use it when ‘Aunt Flo’ visits.”

When Betsy’s sister arrived yesterday, Tracy introduced her to Peter, telling the boy: “Honey, I want you to meet your great-grandma’s sister, Florence.”

At that, Florence told her great-nephew: “Please! Just call me Aunt Flo!”

Napkins? Sort of, but not usually for the dinner table!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *