Slice of Write

Stories & jibber-jabber by Janelle Parmer, Author of The Other Side of the Ledge & Chasing Calla Lilies

Marilyn lays in bed as she looks out the bedroom window.  She watches a pair of hummingbirds fly past the big oak tree.  Another beautiful morning, she thinks to herself as Anna enters the room.  Marilyn and Anna have shared a room at an assisted care facility for just over 8 months. 

“Nice of you to finally join the living,” Anna said as she sat down on her bed and placed her cane against the nightstand.

“I didn’t see you in bed, so thought you might have died last night,” Marilyn grinned.

“In your dreams,” Anna said.

“Maybe tomorrow,” Marilyn smirked.  “Why do you wake up so damn early anyway?  There’s nothing going on at 5 am in this place, except all of the other old geezers wandering the halls.”

“Habit, I guess.  Anyways, it’s quiet and I can hear myself think.”

“Why would you want to do that?”

“Hell, if I know, but you should try it some time.”

“Anna the Thinker, Jesus Christ, what is this world coming to?  Oh, Great One, what’s for breakfast?”

“Cold eggs and hot milk.”

“Oh, good.  I wouldn’t want it the other way around for Christ’s sake.”

“At least they are consistent.  I’ll give them that,” Anna said as she started thumbing through a magazine. 

Marilyn slowly got up, grabbed her walker, and headed towards the bathroom.

“Make sure to use that febreze.  Yesterday it smelled like a dairy farm in there,” Anna shouted as Marilyn shut the bathroom door.  Marilyn slightly opened the door, just enough to give Anna the middle finger, and then slammed the door shut.

About twenty minutes later, Marilyn came out of the bathroom dressed in her day clothes. 

“I was getting ready to call the nurse on you.  I thought you might have fallen in there,” Anna said as she changed the stations on the tv remote.

“I told you, don’t call the nurse unless it’s Jackson.  I don’t like the other ones.”

“Ok, so if you are laying on the floor, and Jackson is not around, you want me to leave you on the floor until he clocks in?”

“You know what I want.  Don’t play dumb like my children.”

“Are they coming to visit tomorrow?”  Anna asked gently.

“I haven’t heard from them so I’m not sure,” Marilyn said as she slowly sat on the chair near her bed and started digging in her purse.

“Screw ‘em,” Anna smiled.  “That’s why I never had any.  Ungrateful bastards.  All they do is take.  You give up your body, the prime of your life for them, and then when you need them, those assholes are too busy to stop by for an hour to see you.”

“You didn’t have any kids because your husband was smart enough not to let you procreate.  And for your information, it’s not like that.  They are busy.  I know they love me.”

“I still say screw ‘em,” Anna grabbed her cane, got up from her bed, and walked over to Marilyn.  “Do you want to get some breakfast?  They are getting ready to shut it down in 15 minutes.”


Anna carefully helped Marilyn up from the chair and onto her walker, using her cane to stable her.  They walk slowly down the long hallway, saying hello to other residents and facility staff along the way.  Anna doesn’t remove her hand from Marilyn’s back until they enter the dining room. 

2 thoughts on “Roommates – 6/25/2020

  1. Randy says:

    Nice slice. Well done.

    1. saidnell says:

      Thank you!

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