“We got evicted,” my mother said, hauling her suitcase through the front door. My cousin, her sister-in-law, and my sister-in-law followed her in with their luggage. Evidently, evicted as well. We were having a women-only reunion in Kelowna, B.C. at my cousin Leslie’s house. Half the crew was staying down the street at a Bed and Breakfast. Or rather they had been.
“This isn’t about that thing at the border?” I asked my mother quietly.
“No, love, we’d have been deported, not evicted,” my mother said. She patted my shoulder. “It’s fine.”
“What thing at the border?” Leslie asked.
I looked at my mother. She was unpacking her knitting. I lowered my voice, “We told the border guard that we weren’t leaving anything behind in Canada. Then my mom had an IBS attack and was forced to leave her underpants in the Canadian restroom. I’ve been concerned ever since.”
(Yes, those are porta potties. According to my mom you should never pass up a restroom even if it is portable.)
Leslie offered me a plate of watermelon. I made a cup of tea. That’s how the Canadians deal with unpleasant incidents that tend to surround the Bennett family when we travel together. We’ve got history.
“Where are we going to put everyone?” I could feel my blood pressure elevating.
My ever-calm cousin said, “We’ll figure it out.”
I looked around for my mother. She came down the hallway from the bathroom. “The toilet won’t flush,” she said, passing me by in the hallway.
“You didn’t put your underpants down the toilet?” I asked.
“Of course not, but I did leave a little piece of myself behind. It’s barely noticeable.” She picked up my cup of tea and went to sit on the deck. “I better go check this out,” I told Leslie.
Toilets are the bane of my existent. I stood looking down at the “little piece of myself,” my mother mentioned. I took the back off the toilet, jiggled the handle, played with the float and tried to flush. No go. I sighed and went back to the kitchen.
“The toilet won’t flush,” I told Leslie, sparing her the sordid details.
“Just get a bucket of water from the tub and empty it into the toilet tank,” she said, worry-free.
I followed her instructions. It worked. Now, I needed to find out why they got evicted from the Bed and Breakfast. I went out on the deck. “Why did you get evicted?” I asked my mom.
“A pipe burst upstairs and flooded us. I got a nice photo of Jenna trying to mop it up. That happened around four this morning. We went back to bed once the water flooding stopped.”
“You didn’t have anything to do with that, did you?”
“Of course not,” she said, looking rather affronted.
I leaned over to Leslie. “We’re going to have to watch her around the plumbing.”
“Here, have a piece of cantaloupe,” she said.
You’ve got to love the Canadians.
Book Three of the True Heart series