Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Cancer man: Camo

He had a camouflage hat and we talked about hunting in the car.

"Do you get out much to hunt?" He asked and I shook my head.

"I haven't really been hunting since I was a boy."

I did not tell him that I was the weird one in the family who didn't much care for it, which mostly had to do with the hours, not necessarily the objection to obliterating animals. I'm not big on that either, but hunting is inconvenient. Hunters like to get up before dawn, dress either too warmly or not warm enough and wander in fields while the sun slowly peeks up above the trees. They wander around in the woods and have to be quiet.

I'd rather sleep. Back in the day, I'd rather eat breakfast cereal in my Hulk underoos and watch cartoons I hated, but would come to adore later.

"My brothers and my dad hunt a good bit," I said and that's true. They're nuts about it, though not as crazy as my best friend's dad, Bobby. Bobby had a gun cabinet like a golf bag. He'd have hunted mailmen and mounted their heads on his wall if they'd but had an official season.

"I miss that the most," he said. "I just can't get out like I used to."

His wife said nothing, but she nodded. He loved to hunt.

It was a beautiful day. A good day to be in the woods and kind of a shame for him that he couldn't make it.

I got him to his treatment, which was supposed to be 45 minutes, but turned into over 3 hours.

"They couldn't get the port to work," he said when it was all over. "It was a new port." He sighed. "It's supposed to be better next time."

I told him I hoped it was, not because it put me out, which seemed to bother him, but because his day was shot.

Barely out of the parking lot, he said he could feel the medicine kicking in.

"You can tell," he told me. "There it is."

I asked him if he was all right.

"Oh, I'll be fine. They done give me some stuff before they started the chemo for my stomach." He sighed. "Chemo is the absolute worst."

"How far along are you into your treatment?"

"This was my first round of this," he told me. "It's pretty tough, but I got to do it." He shook his head. "I'm just buying myself a little more time is all."

His wife in the backseat kept her silence, but stared at the floor.

1 comment:

jen said...

I like your blog, by the way. :)