I can be particular about certain things. People always joke about people who are particular. The word “anal” comes up plenty. But I don’t get that handle much because I’m not overzealous about a ton of stuff. Still, I like my money facing in the same direction (that comes from my days as a bank teller), I want my tablecloth to hang the same length on each end, and I hate it when the closet door is left open. I can’t sleep if it’s open an inch. Or a centimeter. A childhood fear that’s traveled along with me all these years, I suppose.
Another thing I’m particular about is popsicles. Yes, popsicles. I like the classic cherry, grape and orange variety. And only those flavors.
Yesterday, one of the worst days of this pesky virus thus far, I was in a lot of pain. My doctor told me today, after I asked WTF happened to me, that the virus got into my lymph system and spread through my body. So what I experienced were aches and pains everywhere. Everywhere. My elbows hurt, my knees, my wrists, my ribs, my legs, my back, my toes. Everything. And I was hot and sweaty and uncomfortable as I lay prone on the bed, whining about why I was still sick after so damn long.
On one of my few excursions out of bed, I creaked down the stairs to the kitchen to get a glass of water. Being so hot and uncomfortable, I decided on some ice. I wanted really COLD water at that point. And my beloved popsicles were right there in the freezer, beckoning me. I grabbed two and hauled them upstairs to bed with me. (No crumbs, no worries!)
The coolness was heavenly. I ate the two within five minutes and savored the wonderful calming of my sore throat. So lovely and refreshing. Sore knees aside, I stumbled back down the stairs again for two more. Yum. Delish. Hit the spot. Temporary relief. Throughout the day, I killed that box of popsicles. All twelve of ’em. They were, as I told my husband, the only thing that was offering me even a smidgeon of relief.
So when he nicely asked me that evening if there was anything he could get for me, I sweetly eyed him and said, “Popsicles?” He kindly drove to the store to fetch me another box. I think I even drifted off to sleep a bit and dreamed about those popsicles while he was away.
When he returned I heard him forage through the bag, open the box and shimmy the wrapper off of one of the popsicles. I grinned with glee when I saw the cherry flavored one in his hand. I was so happy. I don’t believe I’ve ever been quite that happy to see food before. I took the first bite with the smile still on my face. Then it slowly began to fade.
Did I taste cinnamon?
Another bite. Yep. This wasn’t cherry. This was cinnamon. I scurried as quickly as I was able to to the box in the freezer and saw that it contained fancy versions of my favorite pops. The Wild Bunch: sour blue raspberry, red hot cinnamon, cotton candy chaos and icy mint. Ugh! Those flavors are NOT refreshing. They’re not calming. And they’re not soothing. They’re ugh.
But there’s no way you can scold a man who nicely volunteered to drive to the grocery store just to get you a box of popsicles. You can, however, when he asks if you need anything from the store the next day, say, “Um, yeah, sweetie. Could you get some of the regular ol’ popsicles? Without the fancy flavors. Please?”