I went to Cleveland over the weekend - up on Saturday and back on Sunday. It's a 530 mile drive from Charlotte - across Virginia, West Virginia, and into Ohio. Honestly, those kinds of drives are almost "casual" - anything I can do in 8 hours or less really isn't much of a trip. The drive was uneventful, the scenery was nice, I'm in good spirits - all things considered it was very pleasant.
The reason I went was to accept an Award for being inducted into the Gay Games Hall of Merit at a pre-opening-ceremony reception. Everything went smoothly, and I had a good time. It was nice to see some of the wrestlers from San Francisco who I first met when I attended a Memorial Day Camp/Tournament there in 2006.
|Golden Gate Wrestling Club - May 2006|
I made a bunch of travel arrangements last week. I'll be flying home to Rochester for Mom's Birthday Aug 26-31, I'll be in Atlanta at SCC the following weekend, I'll be in Washington DC for an event at the end of the month, and I'm flying to Denver to see my son and attend a Buffalo Bills game there in early December. I also expect to be doing a trip to Epcot next month, and would love to get to Annapolis for the Boat Show in October. We'll see how it goes.
The news on everyone's mind at the moment is the tragic suicide of Robin Williams. Topics for discussion on FB these days seem confined to suicide or death, and although sadness seems to be a consistent theme thoughts on those two subjects - death and suicide - seem mixed.
I think about death more these days. As I get older and see more and more people who die at an age at or near mine it becomes more of a reality. I've said before and I very much believe that a significant portion of life involves preparing for death. Whether it be accepting tenets of one's faith as they relate to death and beyond, recognition that life is finite so making the most of our time here, or any number of other very profound realities - it's something we'll all face sooner or later.
My mom's 85th birthday looms on the horizon - at the end of the month, to be specific. We'll all be gathering in Rochester, NY. This year will involve a bigger than usual celebration. We've got relatives, friends and neighbors that we haven't seen for 30 or more years coming. My sister has arranged a get-together at the local sailing club on Saturday. I'm actually very much looking forward to it. But there's very much a recognition that we need to enjoy these times while we can.
As life goes on I feel more and more pressure to do some of the things at the top of my bucket list. The item at the top of that list is to visit Europe. I've never been there.
Anyway - I don't mean to make this morose so I'll change topics....
As anyone who has been here for very long knows I mark significant annual dates as landmarks. Perhaps no date is more significant than the day I had SRS - August 10, 2000. That anniversary recently passed with little or no fanfare. It's very much a non-thing these days.
Ironically, when I think of that week I think of three things. I think of the unpleasant "prep" the night before. I think of my mom and sister being there. And, I think of what it was like to finally get out of bed to take a shower after the bandages had been removed. It was gone. Finally. Although many years have passed the amazement I felt at that moment has never faded. It still amazes me.