Anyone who knows me very well knows I don't like to talk on the telephone. If our home phone rings, it's usually for Cliff, not me. My cell phone seldom rings because I forget to keep it with me; often when it does ring, I run through the house trying to locate it, and the caller gives up before I can find it. Most folks figure it's a waste of time to call my cell phone; I'm not likely to answer it.
Cliff's youngest sister, who lives in St. Louis, usually calls on Thursday nights just to check in . Even though I don't always hold up my end of the conversation very well, I do look forward to her weekly calls.
Yesterday Cliff bought a pickup load of river sand which he's going to dry, sift, and use for sandblasting. He spread some out on his shop floor, and some on the floor of the garage his sister, Rena, parks her car in. I happened to be looking out the window when Rena arrived home, and I saw that she didn't pull in the garage, but parked out front of it. I immediately knew what the problem was: She was unsure whether she should drive in on the sand. I grabbed the cordless phone and took it over beside my chair, sure she'd call and ask what was going on. I didn't want to call her because after a long drive home from work, I figured she needed a little time to take her dog out to potty, and perhaps use the facilites herself.
Well, she didn't call just then; but about fifteen minutes later, Charlene called my cell phone; time for our weekly chat. At exactly the same time, the home phone rang. I looked from one phone to the other and finally made a decision to answer my cell phone and tell Charlene to hang on a second.
By the time I did this, the home phone stopped ringing. But I looked to see who the caller was. It was Cliff's sister, the one I'd been expecting to call ten minutes earlier. Oh well, I'd call her back when I was done with Charlene.
Perhaps five more minutes went by before the home phone began to ring again, only this time I saw it wasn't Rena; it was a neighbor down the road who probably just wanted to know if I've found any morel mushrooms. So I ignored that call, which wasn't easy, trying to concentrate and talk to Charlene with the $%&@^# phone ringing.
Finally the ringing stopped, but the silence wasn't to last. Within three or four minutes it was started again; this time it was Rena calling.
"I'm going to have to let you go and answer the phone," I told Charlene. "It's Rena, and I'm pretty sure I know what she wants."
Indeed, Rena only wanted to know she whether could pull into the garage, just as I had suspected.
Even though I called Charlene back, our weekly call was pretty much ruined, what with not being able to concentrate, plus all the interruptions. Oh well, maybe next week will be better.
I tried to return the missed call from my neighbor, but by then she was gone.
Is it any wonder I hate telephones?