Travel Prep.

When my brother and I were teenagers, there came a time when our parents figured they could go away and leave us on our own. Their instructions were minimal.

Feed the dog.
Water the plants.
No parties.

We had it down.

Today I get an email from my dad, who is going to the Grand Canyon and Las Vegas with his girlfriend and her 16-year-old daughter. It’s considerably more than the lists of yore. He’s got instructions of what to do if my grandmother dies and he can’t get back or they can’t get ahold of him. It has what to do if he has a medical emergency and I have to invoke Power of Attorney. It’s a lot grislier than the teenage lists.

Aside from the fact that the new instructions are a reminder that mortality is creeping towards all of us, unseen and gimlet-eyed, it’s a reminder that I’m an adult. Now I have to deal, so I will.

Not to say that I didn’t when I was younger. At one point when Mom and Dad were away, something happened with the front door lock and I had to go buy and install another one. Cue frantic flapping from my mom, who couldn’t seem to believe that I could have handled it.

And I can handle it now. Hell, thanks to my mom, I even know not to buy an urn at the funeral home. I know to go to Chinatown.

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