I forgot to tell you how Clam Boat Day turned out.
To say that Gam was disappointed boat would be a bit of an understatement. First of all, they forgot the “boat.” Just a big, greasy pile of deep-fried nastiness on a plate. So that was strike one.
Second, it was cold–and apparently squishy and slimy. (Which is kind of your fault, if you ask me, when you order a clam sandwich. So I didn’t have a whole lot of sympathy.)
And third….they forgot the Happy Ending.
It’s quite the surreal experience to sit across from the family matriarch and hear, “Where’s my Happy Ending? I want my Happy Ending!” (Perhaps they don’t have shady Asian massage parlors on the East Coast–because nobody out there thinks it’s funny when I tell that story. You can google it if you want.)
Anyway. Clam Boat Day was an epic fail. So much, so, that there may have been choice words involved. So my dear sweet father went out in search of a turtle sundae from Bruesters.
Funny thing about cancer. What you eat, the cancer eats. It gets bigger, you get smaller. Like an ugly baby that nobody wants. Gam’s hospice nurse, Maggie (who is wonderful by the way) explained to me that at this point in the game, food doesn’t matter. If it brings her comfort, bring it on. If she doesn’t want to eat–that’s fine. She’s past the point of benefitting from it. A strange concept for souls to grasp.
The clam boat may have been a disaster, but the chocolate turtle sundae was a huge hit. She devoured the whole thing. Slowly, but impressively. When she got to the bottom, fishing out a huge heaping spoonful of oozing caramel and hot fudge, her eyes grew big–like a little kid.
“Look at this, Jenny!!! Do you want a bite?”
“No thanks, Gam.”
She breathed a notable sigh of relief and set her eyes back to the spoon.
“Good. Cause I didn’t want to share with you anyway.”
A few days later, I wondered if Gam would be willing to give her beloved clam boat another try. And mostly just wanted to get a rise out of her.
“Pssst,” I whispered to my sister at the dinner table. “Ask her if she wants another clam boat.”
Patty rolls her eyes and decides to humor me.
“Gam? Do you want a clam boat?”
Gam looks at Patty, gives her ‘the look,’ and without missing a beat, says, “Do you want me to smack you?”