Moving the household operation: Morphine-Managing M. & the Karagöz Puppets


Digitally-enhanced photo of 1940s Provincetown from Provincetown Community Space FB page.

Now that Catherine the great, the catheter puppet, has (Thank goodness) gone back to her homeland -we can head off to Provincetown for some recovery time.

Karagöz interrupts me – “that actually wasn’t a puppet at all!” Karagöz exclaimed. “That was some particularly pathetic attempt at a reframe about a really bad situation involving tubes and body parts that should not normally mix.”

You never can get a sentence done with him prancing around here anyway. Let’s start again. Catherine the great is gone. We wish her well and are glad of this sign that a new stage of recovery has been reached. The combination of a new stage of recovery from my operation and the fact that we move ti Provincetown tomorrow, means that the household is all a-flutter.

Kenne, the somewhat bossy puppet who calls herself the Queen of etiquette and maintenance of ladylike behavior and condition, is as usual, trying to direct traffic with her shrill voice and earsplitting only piercing silver whistle: “It’s time to move the household operation to Provincetown – We must pitch in as the husband cannot possibly do this work it is on – thinkable. Given the malady of m’lady we have to do our part and do it well as HE surely cannot.” Hearing this, M’Lady decides not to engage in a discussion of sexist Ottoman era assumptions with Kenne, as for the stating of the obvious (we’re moving) it’s too late for that – the puppets are all running around like crazy doing their packing. You cannot imagine that such tiny puppets have so much to pack for just a month-long visit.

20130809-110828.jpgAs M’Lady lies in bed waiting for her pain medicine to kick in, the dog keeping close watch, the goings on around her are Quite reminiscent of some PBS Masterpiece Theatre episode involving a great English house cleaning up for the summer to head to Scotland for the hunt or somesuch. Perhaps we should be more up to date and refer to Downton Abbey but we in this home are not that evolved (yet).

M’Lady is feeling relieved that She has been left in the bedroom with the dog, air conditioning running (despite the fact that it’s not so hot), so that the sounds of chaos in the form of vacuuming, packing and arguing about how to pack the car are muffled out. As She is usually the one doing all this with the puppets, it is quite something now that M. is the human interacting with all the puppets and their packing needs.

There have been several visits of supplicating protest to my bedside, as follows:

Mercan Bey, the Arabian Spice Trader Puppet: “M’Lady, I do hope you are feeling better, but I must protest that the human male your husband has gone to the most expensive purveyor of gluten-free pasta sellers – I could have obtained much better deals!”

M’lady’s response: “Well, dear one, at least he is so thoughtful to think ahead about avoiding the expensive prices in the Provincetown natural food store! It’s much worse there! And how nice to have a husband who thinks so carefully about his wife’s care, no?” This attempt at diplomacy seemed to relax him.

Safiye Rakkase, the vainglorious dancing girl puppet: “M’Lady, Your husband is requiring that we only pack five changes of clothes for an entire month – this is highly unacceptable to myself especially given that carnival is coming in Provincetown and I must have access to my most spectacular outfits for that weeklong event!”

M’lady’s response: “Well, dear one, there’s always shopping in town! How about if I give you an extra allowance for that – especially as I will not be dressing up or participating in the event as I did last year during our Ottoman space invaders costuming phase.” This wording, seemed to assuage her concerns.

Hacivad Bey, our learned Sufi elder topic, and Yehuda Rebbe, our resident Jewish wise man and scholar: “M’Lady, we Hesitate to bother you in your recuperative state, but we doth protest the restriction of three books each for this month long trip – what are we to do? How are we to continue our interfaith dialogue during this exodus from home? Provincetown is the perfect place for such dialogue and we have been looking forward to this for months. But it is impossible.”

M’lady’s response: “Dear learned ones, may I remind you that I am bringing both my Kindle, my iPad, my laptop, and my Provincetown library card. You can scan and load as many books, as you like, and use my card as you see fit, if you can hop up onto the library counter. Dear ones, I think you will greatly enjoy the Provincetown library and all of its contents – especially the full-sized Rose Dorothea boat on the second floor.” This, too, seem to do the trick.

This went on for many hours until the drugs really kicked in and M’Lady was out for good. When she woke, she kept her eyes closed and thought “at least I can be helpful in some small way.”

Image of Long Point from Provincetown Community Space FB page

Image of Long Point from Provincetown Community Space FB page

In the end, the car is packed to the gills. M’lady is eased into the reclining seat with lots of padding. The dog curls up in his spot in the back the puppets take their space on the back dashboard to watch the world go by. M vrooms the car, newly filled with gas for the 2 hour drive… And we push off for the beautiful Cape Cod light and quiet that will hopefully speed M’Lady’s healing and ease M.’s jangled nerves and weary soul.


This entry was posted in A Karagöz puppet battle, Gendered moments, Turkish Food!, Visits from the Karagöz puppets. Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Moving the household operation: Morphine-Managing M. & the Karagöz Puppets

  1. Alan says:

    ‘. . well, well, well! As England seems to be in for a thrashing by Australia, you are staging a magnificent second innings recovery.’ Power to all of your elbows! Lovely to have you back and interacting with your fans – love and hugs all around!

  2. It’s so good to hear your humor rippling through this, and to hear you speak about your own improvement. I saw quite a lot of improvement when we all had lunch, and you were on meds and in some pain, but nonetheless in much higher spirits than you had been for months, which said to me that the hellish pain had lifted, and this pain was just post-op pain.
    So fine that you are in P’town, and I envy you the place, the sea, the local culture, the joy. Do reel in it all. And if you are up for company, let me know –

  3. That last photo of the lighthouse looks so peaceful. Glad you will finally be getting a chance to rest and recover and I hope that M gets a break too.

  4. lizcameron says:

    Thanks very much, Trish. It is peaceful. And so many other sights here are as wel. And our little place is peaceful and full of light. M. is relaxing, a well-deserved state of affairs! Love, E.

  5. lizcameron says:

    Dear Nancy,

    Thank you so much for writing. Do you know that I had no memory of our lunch with Trisha until this morning when Murat recounted all? That anesthesia had some long-lasting effects, for sure. I do feel better, but tire easily and am having some complications, but I think they will sort out. Our construction drags on in the last throes kind of way, so I spend work days (mon-sat) resting at a friend’s house. Today is a rare reprieve and I look forward to watching the shadows move across the walls while I rest. Love, Liz.

  6. lizcameron says:

    Dear Alan,

    M. had to explain this to me in my drugged up state 🙂 and it made me laugh, so the “cough pillow” came out, but it was a good sign and a good laugh. I am dragging myself through recovery – this was dictated a few weeks ago in such a post-surgical still-with-anesthesia-hangover state that I did not remember recording it when I found it. Working hard on recovery and coming back, which involves a lot of zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzs. When I am falling to sleep, sometimes I picture the magnificent view of your valley – where we just started to walk up on those rocks into the skinny pass. I love doing that imagery. Sending love your way. Liz.

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