Recently Read Books

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  • Winter in Madrid - C.J.Sansom (Fiction)
  • The Brothers - John Foster Dulles and Allen Dulles - non-fiction
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  • Destiny of the Republic - President James Garfield non-fiction by Candice Millard
  • The Last Lion (volume III)- William Manchester and Paul Reid (non-fiction, Winston Churchill)
  • Yellowstone Autumn -W.D. Wetherell (non-fiction about turning 55 and fishing in Yellowstone)
  • Everybody was Young- (non-fiction Paris in the 1920's)
  • Scorpion - (non fiction US Supreme Court)
  • Supreme Power - Jeff Shesol (non-fiction)
  • Zero day by David Baldacci ( I read all of Baldacci's Books)
  • Northwest Angle - William Kent Krueger (fiction - I have read 5 or 6 books by this author)
  • Camelot's Court-Insider the Kennedy Whitehouse- Robert Dallek
  • Childe Hassam -Impressionist (a beautiful book of his paintings)

Sunday, November 1, 2009

What A Weekend

You have had weekends that you look back on and you think to yourself “how good was that”. A weekend that you look back on, even months later, and remember with a smile and a warm feeling. Well I just had one. The Lovely Sharon was in Nebraska all week visiting her ailing mother, my dear mother-in-law, Lucille. Unfortunately, Lucille is dealing with some very serious health issues which have caused the family great angst. This week it was hard to be home alone in Utah not knowing what was going on in Nebraska. Each call from Sharon was cryptic with little information being provided since she couldn’t really talk and there was uncertainty on her end as to the results of certain medical tests. In each call, you could hear the worry and uncertainty in her voice. It goes without saying that I spent lonely week thinking about family, friends, health, life and the uncertainty that we all deal with. Things are great one moment and something bad comes out of nowhere. It has happened to all of us.

I read a couple of books this week and worked a little longer at the office each day just to kill time. But when I awoke Saturday it was a beautiful, not a cloud in the sky, day. It was the kind of day that acted like a healing balm on the rough edges of the week. The Lovely Sharon was flying into Salt Lake at 7:00 pm so I had a full day to work with. She called me first thing in the morning and we had a subdued conversation but it was so good to hear her voice. After I talked to Sharon, I called son Alex and talked to him for a few minutes. He was working so I couldn’t see him in person but I felt like giving him a hug, so I called him. He was busy so we only talked for a couple of minutes but we agreed to meet for a late lunch or early dinner next week.

I then visited my Mother and Father. Although I talk to them fairly often by phone, I had not seen them for a couple of weeks so it was nice to sit and talk in person. Our conversations are always interesting as we talk about politics, current events sports and who in the neighborhood has recently died or is near death. My parents always know what’s going on in life, politics and society and they always have opinions about those goings on. When I was younger I used to wonder why anyone would have a conversation which focused on illness and death, but as I get older (57 last week), I find myself reading the obituaries and talking about who is ill, dead or nearly dead. I have officially become old. Damn.

After visiting my parents I went home and raked leaves. I know that raking leaves does not sound like recreation but I totally enjoyed the solitude of our park-like back yard. If you have read this blog before you know about the neighbor’s dog and so you know that when I walked out of the house I had two dog treats in my pocket. I grabbed my rake, gloves, and an inventory of plastic lawn bags and walked into the back yard. Yep, you got it. The dog saw me and walked to our common fence waiting for me to feed him some treats. I gave him both treats, rubbed his head, which was warm from the morning sun, and asked him how he was doing. I put on my Ipod listened to music and raked for an hour so. As I worked, the hawks flew over me and the squirrels chattered around me as they scampered up and down the trees and ran through the yard.

I called my sister and talked with her for a few minutes. I need to blog about her. She is one of the best people I have ever met.

After watching college football, I picked up Sharon at 7:00. I can’t tell you how glad I was to see her standing at the airport curb with her suitcase in her hand. I must say I got a little misty eyed when I jumped out of the car to give her a hug. We had dinner at Hidden Valley Country Club and were joined by dear friends Mike and Shar. Having the Boss back home and dinner with friends topped off a very good day.

Today, Sunday was another beautiful day, the kind of Utah autumn day that just feels right. You can smell the autumn in the air. The temperature is cool but the sun is warm on your face. You Utahns know exactly what I mean. I made us breakfast and raked leaves for two more hours. Yep, more treats for the neighbor’s dog. After I cleaned up, we visited son Nick, his wife Ali and the new baby Kendall. What lovely parents our granddaughter Kendall has. Nick is a fantastic man and Ali is about as sweet and pretty as a lady can be. When you look at Ali it makes you just smile. I got to hold Kendall again, fed her and just basically was in awe of her. You look at an infant and you wonder what she is thinking. Does she know what’s going on? Does she know the dog running around her is not a person but a dog? Sharon bought her a Nebraska Cornhusker outfit. As Kendall gets older, I am hoping to convert her to a University of Utah UTE. I am pretty sure that can be done since, although Nick loves Nebraska Football (the home state of his mother and father), he is a University of Utah graduate. I am thinking that by the time she is three she will be singing “Who am I sir? A Utah man am I”.

Holding Kendall takes me back to the time when son Alex was a new born in 1983. I remember how I felt each time I saw him. I must confess that I was a very proud father. When we brought him home from the hospital he was wearing a little black tuxedo with tails and a bow tie. Don’t ask me where I bought, it, I don’t remember. I just know that when he was in the hospital nursery, all the babies around him were wrapped in swaddling clothes but the nurses had dressed him in his tuxedo. There were a lot people looking through the window at this one day old baby wearing Fred Astaire tails.

Tonight we made dinner for friends Bruce and Barbara. Dinner, conversation, wine and catching up with each other. You cannot place too much importance on what dear friends bring to your life. I continue to marvel at how lucky I am to have such people in my life. I don’t deserve it and I don’t give back nearly as much as I receive from these fine people.

The Lovely Sharon has been home just over 24 hours. In that short time, she asked me why I was driving where I was driving on a freeway detour, she told me not to hit a parked car that I was driving past, she told me to change the shirt I was going to wear to Nick and Ali’s house, she told me to knock it off when I tried to fondle her while I was wearing rubber yard gloves, and she didn’t let me buy doggy ice cream for the neighbor’s dog that I found at the grocery store. Isn’t it nice to have her back? You bet it is. What a lucky fellow am I .

As you know from a previous blog, I have been told that I must be a narcissist because I write a blog. I admit that this entry is pretty narcissistic describing a weekend that means nothing to you but meant everything to me. It brought me peace, joy, love and happiness. To get these things in your life and then write about is undoubtedly narcissistic.

Family, friends, home, colorful fallen leaves, the smell of autumn and blue skies are things money can’t buy. You probably know what I mean.

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