Wednesday January 22

Average to good day today.  No Cilla at work (her day off).  Parents in at store to help.  Felt slight annoyance with them at some points, a shared sense of humor at others – an average day.

Saturday January 25

News on the coronavirus:  1320 confirmed cases worldwide, 237 made severely ill, 41 deaths.  They're saying it could become a pandemic:  We're bound to get one sooner or later.

Was cool verging on bitchy with Cilla today, all because she once again left work early yesterday.  I'm allowed no formal form of rebuke, can't express displeasure except indirectly, through a kind of peevish bad temper.  Which makes me even more irritatable, and leaves me feeling I've no other option than to turn cold.  I could talk it out, I suppose, but what would I be expected to say?  Leaving work early bad.  You understand?  Bad, bad thing to do.

At about 4:30 Cilla found out her brother had just been shot and killed, victim of a hold-up at a fast-food place, apparently.  She received the news and immediately went into a kind of shock; I ordered her to one of the back rooms where she broke down sobbing.  When I checked again a few minutes later she was hunched down on the floor rocking back and forth.  When she finally reappeared, she looked ghastly – pale and dazed and slightly sick.  I closed the store early and drove her home.

I don't know.  She's had such a miserable, confused life.  Now this.  Yet I myself stayed cool and calm – detached – from the whole event.  Let her collect herself as much as she was able, drove her sobbing through the streets, saw that she made it to her door.  I don't know that throwing my arms around her at any point would have helped anyway.  She has others at home better equipped.

Monday January 27

Came home from work today to find a message left on my phone saying that my landlord's property – including the little house I live in (what they call a cottage apartment, i.e. a converted garage) – is to be shown to prospective buyers tomorrow.  This will make the second time in 9 days.  Is that okay? the voice of the cheerful real-estate agent asks.  No, but I've no legitimate objection to make, so must allow strangers to traipse through my home, potentially to buy it out from under me, force me to leave or raise my rent . . .  My current landlord and the real-estate people tell me they're all pushing for that not to happen – but nobody can give me a guarantee.

Tuesday January 28

Another viewing has been scheduled for tomorrow.  That now makes 3 in 10 days.  The news (received via my phone after work) sent me a bit over the edge.  I shouted, ranted and raged – calmed down enough to feed the cats – then went upstairs and curled up on the bed for the next two hours.  Pathetic?  Or frightening?

Meanwhile at work Cilla continues in her obstinately childish behavior, even in the midst of her grief . . .  She was damaged before; she's even more damaged now.  And I continue to be cool and slightly ruthless towards her, too absorbed by my own anxieties to have any patience with hers.

Oh did I mention that Griffith told me the other day that Stu had overdosed on heroin over the Thanksgiving holiday?  He recovered, and he's been sober several months now.  His wife left him, but he hopes they can get back together soon.  Also he's found God.  Also he's writing his autobiography (he always did think he was a magnificent study).  Also he's . . .

Well, good for him.