Saturday, March 26, 2005

No Wonder Riverbend Is Cranky

No wonder Riverbend Is Cranky

She's got something like 30 people cohabitating in her domicile, or at least did during the beginning phases of the War For The Emancipation Of Iraq:

The house was chaotic that moment. The parents were running, dad trying to locate his battery-powered radio and mother making sure the stove was turned off. She was also yelling orders over her shoulder, commanding us to go into the “safe room” we had specially decorated with duct tape and soft cushions, or ‘bomb-proofed’ as my cousin liked to say. The aunt that was staying with us was running around, shrilly trying to find her two granddaughters (who were already in the safe room with their mother). The cousin was rushing around turning off kerosene heaters and opening windows so that they wouldn’t shatter with the impact. E. hurried in from outside, trying to keep his expression casual under the paleness of his face...

The faces in the safe room were white with tension. My cousin’s wife sat in the corner, a daughter on either side, her arms around their shoulders, murmuring prayers softly. My cousin was pacing in front of the safe room door, looking grim and my father was trying to find a decent radio station on the small AM/FM radio he carried around wherever he went. My aunt was hyperventilating at this point and my mother sat next to her, trying to distract her with the voice of the guy on the radio talking about the rain of bombs on Baghdad.

I get annoyed with just two other people inhabiting my household and the best days are when the house is quiet and I have it to myself, so I can see where Riverbend must be pulling out her hair. And how long is the line to the bathroom? Do they pass out numbers to use the toilet? And what happens when she feels "Frisky"? Where does she seek some privacy? The only place left, without standing room attendance, is the roof.

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