Lily did something a while ago that warmed my heart up and I wanted to make sure and remember it. I think it was on Saturday. We had some friends over for food and who knows what else. All the kids (ours and others) were running through the house acting crazy. Per usual, the adults were in the kitchen. I can’t remember what I was cooking, but something set off the fire alarm in the kitchen. That thing is incredibly over-sensitive so it wasn’t an unusual occurrence. But while I was wafting fresh air over it and, once again, considering either taking the battery out or smashing it to bits, my little Lily came crawling into the kitchen, head down and moving very methodically across the wood floor. Everyone stopped talking and watched her.
“Bean, what are you doing?”
Slowly she craned her neck towards me, still keeping her head close to the floor, and lifted a finger to point in the direction of the smoke detector.
“That’s right Bean…when there’s smoke, you crawl. Where do you crawl to, do you know?”
“Outside…you crawl outside and go to a neighbor’s house, ok?”
“Ok!” she called, already in the living room. Then she came back and peeked her head into the kitchen.
“There still moke?”
“Nope. You’re safe baby.”
“Ok!” And with that she jumped up and ran back into the mouth of the house to find her friends.
Hilarious. I know where it comes from, too. A few weeks ago Heather was driving the girls somewhere and they just happened to pass a pretty serious house fire. Just as they were driving by, firefighters were pulling a man from the wreckage and laying him out onto the lawn. They were pretty upset by the sight of it all so Heather had some fire safety discussion with them once they got home. I know from my fireman friend Joe and the news that the man eventually died. The girls don’t know this.
So today…here I am, parked on the couch with maybe my third cup of coffee. Its 12:30 on a Saturday and I don’t feel much like moving. Groundhog Day is playing on the TV…over and over…heh heh heh…ironic. The girls have disappeared to the other side of the house, just minutes after stripping off their snowsuits. (I hear water running so I better not take too long to check on them). Rhonda just left for the hospital. I’m sure I could populate a list with dozens of things I ought to get done, but I’m struggling with even being awake, let alone doing anything proactive. I have no idea what happened to the last few weeks. True, I’ve been traveling and I’ve been working. More to come on both of those fronts as well.
Last week I lost a friend who’s been battling cancer for awhile – pancreatic cancer which is perhaps the nastiest strain of that vile disease. I met Greg in 2003 though, because the political world is so small, I feel like I’ve known him a lot longer. We’ve got a fair amount of mutual friends and have worked in some of the same places…all that. He was diagnosed a couple years ago and there was never a great prognosis. Since then he’s progressed through various forms and formal and informal treatment until finally throwing in the towel a few months ago. Such a disappointment. I learned a lot from Greg about managing things…people, systems, etc. I never told him that either.
The cancer bug has been on my mind a lot lately. Was I to pull back the drapes that usually blankets my brain and all its anxiety fueled craziness, I would write that there isn’t a day where I don’t worry about cancer. I’d write about a lot of worries actually…maybe I wouldn’t be able to stop. But I’m not going to do that so you’ll never know what I actually think about it, how much it weighs on my day and scares me.
In the last two months I have been to two pro basketball games and one college game. Not sure why…it’s definitely not part of a concerted effort to see more basketball. Just chance. Weird too, because prior to that I haven’t been to a basketball game in…well…not sure. Anyway, I was in DC and went to the George Washington vs St. Louis game with a new work acquaintance. He and I are just getting to know each other. We’re going to work together a lot in 2010 so this was kind of a get-to-know-you date. The thing I liked about going to the GW game, aside from having courtside seats and passes to the AD club (see: free food and booze), was that it smelled like a real sports event. That may sound crazy but believe me, it isn’t. Big stadiums and arenas…you don’t smell sweat. You don’t smell the floor wood or the grass on the field and you don’t smell ben-gay and the nasty towels that haven’t been washed yet. GW plays at the Smith Center in D.C. It’s a small venue and I smelled it all…loved it. It reminded me that I’m an ex-athlete and took my mindset back to 1989 for the duration of the game.
Two weeks from today I’ll be in Vegas and not for work either. I’ll be there with my wife and will not be even considering what work I can get done in Nevada. This trip is one of several auction items that we ‘won’ and one auction or another but have never cashed in on. We’ve got three nights at the Wynn along some cash, airfare…all that. I’m really looking forward to it. Vegas isn’t anything new to me…I’ve been there a ton and I go there a fair amount now for work. But it is one of the only places where I know Rhonda can truly relax.
Here’s us ‘relaxing’ in Vegas after 04 elections.