Probably a box turtle hatchling. Cute, isn't it? But that's not what I'm here to talk about.
Yesterday John and I did some serious adulting. We went to our lawyer and signed wills and living wills and powers of attorney and health care powers of attorney.
Not for any immediate reason other than that we're both creeping up on three-quarters of a century and sooner or later this stuff will be necessary.
It's a little grim, looking ahead like this. But we both wanted, while we were able, to get legal documents that would prevent our spending our last days being kept alive by machines. And we wanted our boys to be relieved of the burden of having to make any hard decisions.
We were trying to be adult. But first I messed up by initialing some items before the lawyer and witness and notary were all assembled. Yes, it said at the top of the page DO NOT SIGN till all witnesses are present but I didn't think initialing was the same as signing.
Wrong. The lawyer sighed and went and made some new copies, telling his paralegal that next time perhaps she shouldn't leave any pens in the room.
Each time we signed, it had to be done accompanied by the lawyer's reciting a formulaic question as to whether we knew what were were signing and whether we agreed to have them witness. There were raised right hands and solemn-ish I do's.
We did pretty well till the lawyer asked John to affirm that this was his last will and testament.
And John said, as I probably would have had I been asked first, "So far." And the lawyer got a pained expression and I think the notary giggled.
Then there was a little nit-picky discussion about the meaning of last -- does it mean final or most recent? Because, who knows what the future holds -- we might, hypothetically, want to write new wills some day.
The lawyer took a deep breath and explained the legal meaning in the case and muttered something about a surcharge for difficult (smart ass) clients.
We agreed to call these documents our last wills and testaments and signed.
After all these formalities were completed, we went down the block to the bank where we've had a safe deposit box for almost forty years. That bank is closing so we had to get all our stuff out of the lock box and move it to another bank.
With some forethought, I'd brought along a nice canvas shopping bag. But it was in the car. John went to fetch it while I went into the bank to start proceedings to open the box.
I hadn't realized though quite how it would look when John, who only rarely goes into that bank, came strolling in with the big white canvas bag. I was the only customer and I was signing my name on the vault roster. But the two tellers and the general manager were on full alert.
"I thought about saying I was here to make a large withdrawal," John said, as he got nearer to me. "But then I realized they might not think that was funny."
Adulting -- we still haven't quite got the hang of it.