Continued from Part 1
Flashback to a few weeks prior, when we had gone to his parents' house for Sunday lunch, the first time I was to meet his mother, father and grandfather. In the days preceding, he explained that we couldn't just drop in because his mother "wasn't much of a housekeeper." He also warned me not to give her my cell phone number lest she start calling me all the time and ditto for friending on Facebook. The words "intrusive" and "slightly crazy" might have also been used, or at least heavily implied.
That Sunday also marked the first time I got irritated with him, as he had said he'd call me to let me know when he would pick me up. I was finishing up a cake to bring when he called me and said he'd be there in 15 minutes. While not aimed directly at him but more in his general direction, my semi-expletive laden response and frentic running around like a chicken with its head cut off trying to get dressed amused him to no end, but to his credit he apologized profusely and made a major effort to calm me down.
What I saw of the house was a little cluttered but nothing out of the range of normal. The lunch wasn't as awkward as I anticipated, mainly because his mother never stopped talking and thus I didn't have to worry about my socially awkward habit of silence when I get nervous really being noticed. He father spoke little and his grandfather a bit more, showing me a photo of his wife when she worked on the American military base in Napoli.
And after when we got back to my place, the clothes went flying and he slammed me against the wall as soon as the apartment door shut. Thank jeebus my flatmates were at the beach. Moment noted for posterity when I am old and senile, because fuck that was hot.
His voice is hoarse as he warns me that his parents' house is a mess. I don't really think twice about it because his mother just lost her father; like hell would I be worrying about housekeeping should I be in the same position. We park the car and already I am regretting my sartorial choices as we climb the stairs. I embrace his mother and offer my condolences; she is alternating between wailing and manic hyperactive yet spacy calm.
The house is jaw-droppingly filthy. Crusted food and dirty plates all over the kitchen, cigarette butts and empty packs littering an already dirty kitchen floor, chaos in the cupboards as she hunts down the coffee and some Kinder snacks. I clasp my hands together behind my back to tamp down the compulsive urge to clean everything with a toothbrush and bleach. This is not 2 days worth of grieving uncleanliness & clutter, this is chronic almost hoarder-style filth. Having stayed over at his place quite a few times by this point, the difference between his neat as a pin style and this bomb crater makes my head spin in dissonance.
His mother is not sure if she will be at the funeral; she doesn't feel up to it. We depart for the the city funeral parlor, attached to the local hospital, picking up his aunt's husband along the way. I have already been warned that there is little love lost between the two sisters' families, but this seems to have been set aside for the day. Once at the funeral parlor, we meet his brother and sister in law as well as the funeral director. As to this latter, I have never met a more blase, rude, insensitive money-grubbing asshole in my life.
Asshole Funeral Director send us trotting off to the post office to pay the city license for transportation and interring while he goes to fill out paperwork. As we trail behind him, he calls to inquire about the availability of a plot in the city cemetery, crudely asking his colleague in obvious layman's slang when they would he able to open up a hole. I want to sucker punch this prick from behind. He terminates the call and turns to tell us that burial will happen around Wednesday morning. He splits off to do paperwork as we continue on to the post office.
Naturally, there is a massive line at the post office as 50% of their systems are down. When we don't show up on the designated corner, Asshole Funeral Director come to find us in the post office. Upon discovering the hang up, he spies a colleague who is way ahead of us in line; this funeral director seems both far more professional in dress and mien. Asshole gets him to pay the fee along with his other clients' fee and we make our way back to the funeral parlor where his grandfather is loaded into the hearse for the trip to the church.
to be continued...