Monday, January 26, 2009

winter continued ad nauseum

I just read a blurb that wondered if SAD is a real disorder. This person must be living in the tropics somewhere, you bet it's real. I have had advice that I should try snowmobiling to get out in the winter, but I'm just not interested, besides where would I store it? My garage is overflowing now with toys. So I spend a lot of time this time of the year pouring over my assortment of maps and flying over routes on "Google Earth" to get a feel for what is out there. The thought did cross my mind of loading up the GS and heading down to west Texas to get some riding in, but that would be hard on the budget for the upcoming summer. PGR missions are slowing down somewhat with the slowdown of combat around the world but there is a statewide series of rides to Minnesota soldier's grave sites. So far I have been thinking about running down to Atlanta early in the year-to beat the heat-to a buddy's home and maybe my dream tour to the west coast again, with a long loop through the Pacific northwest on the way home. Oh well, it keeps me hopeful during the coldest part of the year. On to a different subject, the inauguration of our first black president. I have to admit that I voted for the other guy but that I am kind of hopeful for Obama's success. Things in this country really have changed since I became aware of the race problem in 1962 when I was stationed in Biloxi, Mississippi for training. Coming from a small town in Minnesota I had never met a black person. We used to go to Gulfport to a service club run by the local Missouri Synod Lutheran church, which I attended on a fairly regular basis. One evening a couple of us went to the local Sears store just to look around and there were two drinking fountains, one white one colored. I asked the lady that ran the club what the deal was and she said " don't drink from the colored one it is for Negros" or some thing to that effect. That was the South in the 60s. The county that we were in was dry but there was a bar on every corner, they all paid the sheriff to look the other way. All I could think was " you are not in Minnesota anymore". My sister Kathy and I were in Washington for the 25Th anniversary of the Vietnam Wall, she read names and I tagged along. We were at the ceremony at The Wall on Sunday I believe and heard Collin Powell speak among others. He gave a terrific speech and when he left just about all of the vets in the crowd were urging him to run for president. I have to tell you I would have voted for him in a heartbeat. On to a more pleasant subject. Jan and I had Eli, Lindsey, Leah, and Aaron over for supper the other night so we got some pictures. Saturday night we watched the two little ones so Eli and Lindsey could get a night out for a change and wouldn't you just know it we left the camera over there so I can't include any from Saturday, but I have some from our dinner party downloaded so I will throw a few in. Watching those two in not that big a deal Leah is such a snuggler and Aaron has cut one tooth so he is a little cranky for him, which is not very cranky. Well, that's about it for now, I just heard the mail box clunk so I had better see if anything important has landed there. From the Great White North- to borrow a Canadian term- take care, leave a comment, stay warm, and tell those around you that you love them.

Friday, January 16, 2009

winter deepens

I think that being cooped up by this weather is hard on a person's frame of mind. We have been having near record cold, yesterday morning it was a -23 and that is Fahrenheit not Celsius. Today it is almost 10 above and now they are talking about freezing rain ! I am just starting to get rid of the ice from our last go round with freezing rain. I wonder how people deal with the cold in the arctic and the lack of sunshine, but then I would imagine that citizens of Venezuela wonder how we get along with the cold that we have. Lately also we have been getting snow about every other day so it is starting to really pile up. I have been out scooping or blowing snow off the walk and driveway every day this week. I'm such a whiner. Last weekend Jan and I spent the weekend with the Theobalds in Rochester, mainly so that Jan and Gen could go shopping together childless. Just about all of them were nursing colds in various stages and luckily Jan and I escaped picking that one up. Oh the joys of small children, you get to catch everything that is going around at day care and later at school. Anyhow, I made the rounds of the bike shops just browsing, although I did pick up an off road helmet for dirt biking if this weather ever breaks. Jan had to take a picture of me watching tv with it on. It is a good thing to get them broken in before the season rolls around. I remember when I first got my Aerostich riding suit I watched tv in that one too. So I will include a picture of the newest addition to my collections. I thought that it would be a good idea to get away from an open face helmet with my rebuilt jaw hanging out in the breeze. This one will give me some protection the next time I kiss a tree in the woods or rocks in the mountains. In regards to my surgery recovery, the leg in finally healed up to where I don't bother putting any kind of dressing on it, although I wonder how it would be with french, maybe not. Now if it would just quit itching and my jaw would quit hurting when I take the first few bites, things would be even greater. I walked up town today and over to Mom's but she was still uptown. She hadn't been out since Sunday so I am sure cabin fever was setting in over there too. Well, take care and stay in touch.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

piano man

Today we had the piano tuned up, hoping that it would fix a kind of rattling sound when the keys are released. Although he did find an old plastic paper clip in behind the keyboard the problem is still there. He says that the keys can be removed as a unit but he was unwilling to do it for fear of causing more trouble. On Sunday we had Eli, Lindsey, Leah, and Aaron over to watch the Vikings lose to the Eagles. Leah had on the Viking cheerleader outfit that Jan gave her for Christmas, so I will show a couple pictures of her.
Of course I had to show one of her little brother too just to even things out. You may or may not be aware that we had freezing rain on Saturday and as of today it really hasn't melted much even though it has been in the high twenties and clear the last two days. I waited until around 2pm to let some of the ice disappear and went for a good walk. I suppose for a couple miles anyhow. We do have a treadmill but I don't like it much, my legs feel like lead after I get off the thing, so I much prefer walking outdoors if at all possible. I see the thermometer at the bank said 29, so it is pretty nice, clear and quiet to boot. It feels very good to get out and walk for a half hour or more without the limp that has all but disappeared. The recovery marches on. I just finished " Eisenhower, a soldiers life", and it was a good long read, with incredible details of his life. This one ended at the end of the Second World War, so actually there was a lot of life after that. I just wish that I could remember 10% of the facts brought out. Saint Jan and I plan on heading to Rochester over the weekend to watch the boys while the girls go shopping somewhere. Bill Peck, another EAFB comrade also called over the weekend so I heard from him too. I plan on trying to get to see him sometime this Spring as we have not seen each other since 1966 when I was discharged. It should be interesting. We also have an appointment at Mayo the end of March to see about putting some teeth back into my new jaw. We shall have to see how involved that is, like will it interfere with next Summer's riding etc.. I am getting along pretty well with the teeth that are left so it can wait if need be. Well, time will tell won't it?