Tuesday, November 8, 2005
As mom continued work on her sewing room, I began tackling the huge pile of boxes in the back bedroom that were left over from my father's office.
After my father's stroke, he remained on the faculty of McNeese State by using up the YEAR of sick days he had accumulated over the 23 years he was on the faculty there. However, as it became obvious that he would not be returning to teaching, it was left to me to clean out his office. I got a bunch of boxes from the supermarket and from U-Haul and began packing everything - including journals from the '50s and piles of unopened boxes of samples from textbook publishers. Amazingly, everything fit into the back of my father's pickup and I transferred everything to the corner of my old bedroom. Over the decade, my mother would occasionally pop open a box of student papers and shred them, paranoid that some legal issue would arise if she simply threw them in the garbage. But basically, they stayed in one place for ten years until November 8, 2005.
Although both my father and me encouraged my mother to allow me to simply haul them to the curb, she insisted on moving them, perhaps hanging on to them as a symbol of the considerable intellect that was lost forever with my father's stroke. I did go through most of the materials removing a few meaningful items, such as my father's PhD dissertation. However, most of the boxes were resealed and placed in the garage for transport and, ultimately, a trip to a recycler at some point in the future.
In preparation for another trip to Ruston, I drove back with the folks for a fitful night at the Best Western, Coushatta (i.e. Kinder den of vice).