Vignettes: Dear Landlord

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Hey everyone! Hope your week got off to a good start.

I just wanted to share a cute story about my Monday. Well, actually two stories, both of which revolve around my landlord C. The first involves her  eye doctor, while the second concerns two friendly, albeit slightly misinformed (thanks to C), town employees. :D

C is 88 years old, in excellent health, and as sharp as they come. Trust me when I tell you that she does not miss a thing that goes on in the neighborhood!

I will also add, because it’s relevant to the story below, that C knows about me (of course), and has been absolutely wonderful from the moment I told her.

She does slip up on occasion and call me by my boy name. But she always catches herself immediately and apologizes.

I recently made the mistake of teasing her after she did so, saying I was going to hold back part of my rent as a protest.

"Is that so? Well just keep in mind that someday you're going to be a forgetful old lady too, missie!" lol

She never married, so she has taken it upon herself to adopt all of the neighborhood children, whom she has dubbed "Grandma C’s kids.” She tells me constantly that I'm one of her kids too.

When I point out that I am well past the point where I can be considered any kind of "kid," she reminds me that at 88 I most certainly am as far as she is concerned. :D

She is also VERY protective of "her kids," as I have discovered. When I came out to her - a story that deserves its own post - she was furious at my brother and sister-in-law for how they have behaved towards me.

"Those two had better never cross my path, let me tell you!" she said. "The nerve! Who do they think they are to treat anyone that way, let alone someone as sweet as you?!?"

"Sounds like my brother (a transit police officer) had better wear his bullet-proof vest when he crosses the town line, C!" I replied, laughing.

"Oh, that won't stop me! I'll give him a piece of my mind and he won't know what hit him!"

My next-door neighbors roared when I told them that story. They tell me that the town's politicians run for cover when they see her approaching the microphone at public meetings - all of which she attends.

She gave one of them a tongue lashing recently - and a well-deserved one, I might add - that had the entire gallery cheering when she finished.

"You may wear a fancy suit now, young fella, but I remember you when you were running around in short pants! And let me tell you something - your mother would be ashamed of you right now!"

(I told my manager L this story, and she said "To heck with you; I want her to adopt me!"

(I replied that she already has great parents, to which she responded that she just wants to get her hands on some of the cookies I rave about to her all the time "but never share."

("And speaking as your manager," she added ominously, "I might remind you how important sharing is when you're part of a team. And also when, say, your manager is doing your review in a few months and is getting cranky from a lack of sugar." lol)

Anyway, C asked me over the weekend if I could take her to her eye doctor appointment. She is fine, as I mentioned; this was a routine checkup that had been rescheduled twice due to our crazy winter weather.

In fact, the only reason she asked me to go was to help navigate the still-slick-in-spots sidewalks. Our next-door neighbor, who usually goes with her, is recovering from knee surgery, so she really can't do it herself.

Everything went well at the checkup, not surprisingly. And in true C fashion, she had told the doctor all about me during her checkup - which of course I had no problem with.

He escorted C to the reception area, then walked over and introduced himself, saying he had to meet me after the buildup she had given me.

We chatted while C settled her bill and make her next appointment. He had some questions about my transition in terms of the overall process, which I was happy to answer.

C came over a few minutes into our discussion.

"So - isn't she as cute as I told you, dear?" she asked him, point blank.

My hand went over my mouth instantaneously. Not waiting for a reply, she turned to me.

"I told him to come see for himself. I said that not only are you a cute redhead, but that you're a nice young lady too."

She turned in his direction.

"Aren't I right, doctor?"

My face was as red as my hair - which is quite a feat these days.

Somehow he kept his composure; I suppose you would develop that ability by necessity after having C as your patient!

"Most definitely," he said without missing a beat, smiling. "She clearly takes after you, C."

That made C laugh, and gave him his chance to wish us well and beat a polite retreat before she went any further.

And she clearly *was* going to go further, as I quickly found out.

"You know, hon… I think he may be getting a divorce," she said knowingly, patting my arm during our drive home.

I was speechless, but fortunately we pulled into the driveway a moment later, so I was able to make my escape almost as smoothly as the good doctor did. <g>

After helping her put away the groceries we picked up following the appointment, I grabbed my laptop bag, filled my coffee mug, and headed down to my car to head to work.

And then part two of my Monday morning adventure began. :c)


As I was unlocking the car door, a maintenance vehicle from the town drove by. It slowed to a stop, then backed up. The passenger side window rolled down, and I saw two older gentlemen sitting inside.

“Excuse me, miss,” the worker closest to me said politely. “Do you live here?”

I nodded and said yes.

"Great! Then you're just who we want to talk to. Would you please tell your husband thank you from both of us?” he said, gesturing to the driver, who nodded and waved.

“I'm sorry; my husband?” I replied, baffled.

“Oh - sorry, hon," he said. "We're both older than dirt, and just assumed you kids were married. Don't mind us!" he said. lol

“Anyway, we go around after every storm to clear the fire hydrants and storm drains. But the ones here are always finished."

"We've known C forever. We saw her out talking with the mailman a few weeks ago, and she told us that –“

He stopped, turned to the driver, and said something I couldn’t hear. The driver shook his head.

“Sorry; neither of us can think of his name right now. But she said there's a ‘nice young fellow upstairs’ who digs them out after every storm.”

I was trying my best not to smile. Knowing C as I do, she was simply protecting my privacy in not telling them about me.

“Well, you folks have an entire town to take care of,” I said, trying to keep a straight face. “It’s the least… uh, ‘we’ can do.”

“Well, we sure do appreciate it, believe me,” he said.

He started to roll up his window.

“Anyway, hon, we just wanted to stop and thank you personally. Please tell him thanks from us too, OK?”

“Consider it done,” I replied.


And thus began my week!


Just thought I'd include a few photos I snapped today. I sort of like how these turned out, for once. :c)

The hair is beginning to take on a life of its own again now that the dew point occasionally claws its way out of single digits. It ought to be a battle for the ages between hair products and the humidity come summer time! :-p


For today's soundtrack, tracks from two favorites of your humble blogstress.

First, a stunning cover by Fairport Convention of "Dear Landlord," a song from Bob Dylan's 1967 masterpiece, John Wesley Harding:

How can you go wrong with Sandy Denny's voice and Richard Thompson's guitar playing? Answer: you can't. :c)

Here's an equally riveting live version the band recorded for the BBC, this one leading into a ripping "Cajun Woman," written by Thompson. Check out his blistering lead guitar - and wrap your head around the fact that a) he was 18 years old and b) had begun playing guitar only four years prior!

Incidentally, Dylan wrote the song about his manager, Albert Grossman, with whom he was was falling out as he was recording JWH in the fall of 1967. But the title works perfectly for this post, and it's a great song, so I claim woman's prerogative! :D

Fairport had a gift for interpreting Dylan, choosing to record what were at the time unknown songs from his catalogue, often from the legendary Basement Tapes. They also did stellar versions of "Si Tu Dois Partir," "Million Dollar Bash," and "Percy's Song," among others. All are worth hearing, and all of Fairport's albums up through 1970's Full House, are essential listening for fans of British folk-rock.

Here's one more, written by Sandy Denny, from 1969's Unhalfbricking:



LL Cool Joe on February 25, 2014 at 7:36 AM said...

Ha ha, what great stories. C sounds like a real character!

You look great btw!

Cassidy on February 25, 2014 at 11:44 PM said...

Believe me, Joey, I have not even *begun* to do her justice!

And thank you for the kind words. :#) I bought several new dresses, including this one, and I absolutely adore them (in case you can't tell from the photo). lol

The newest arrived over the weekend; all I will say for now is that a) I wore it today for the first time, and b) it is teal. Yea!!! Pics to follow in my next post.

Have I mentioned lately how much I love being a girl? :D


Jenna on February 26, 2014 at 1:07 AM said...

Can I be adopted to :-) C sounds absolutely amazing. We need more people like her.

When I think of her asking you to help her to get safely through the slippery sidewalks images of sheep being herded across minefields spring to mind. Not sure why :-)

I had a similar experience to your city employee one a while back. I'd popped into a cycling shop to get a new top and a pair of cycle shorts. I knew what I wanted but I needed them to wear when I'd be appearing as my old self so I was asking the assistant about men's tops and shorts. After showing me several types the assistant turned to me and said "it would probably be better if he came in himself". Result.

Love the new pictures, you're looking really good in them.

Aren't Doctors supposed to be very eligible as marriage material ;-)

Cassidy on March 1, 2014 at 11:09 PM said...

Hi Jenna!

What a fun story! It's a great feeling when that happens, isn't it?

C is a hoot, she really is. As far as being adopted, I think it works by proxy, so you're all set. ;c)

Apparently April is now one of hers, btw. C asks me frequently about "that pretty little blonde girl up in Canada." :c) Several weeks ago I innocently noted that April is taller than me - intending to add that April is frequently asked if she is a model because she is tall and slender. But before I could, C told me to hush. lol

Lesson learned: challenge C's suppositions at your own peril!


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