Wednesday, July 27, 2016

The house sold!

My counter proposal was accepted and I have a contract on my house.  Now we just have to get through the inspection phase.  I will probably go down to Westcliffe for a few days next week to clean out the rest of my stuff.

Things are moving along nicely.

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Home again

On Saturday morning I headed to Indianapolis and spent the night again at my old high school buddy's (John's) house.  He got out his yearbooks and we spent hours laughing and reminiscing.  So much fun.

On Sunday John and I met my cousin Amy (and her husband Roger) for lunch on Butler Campus.  Amy grew up in the same town John and I did so there was a lot of reminiscing at lunch, too.

Amy and Roger:

 John and me

After lunch, I hit the road heading home.  I was going to stop in St. Louis but changed my mind and decided to keep going towards Colorado.  I made it to Topeka and one of those Kansas tornado-like storms came along so I found a Best Western Hotel and stopped and got a room (it was about midnight).  I got in the room and got ready for bed -- I propped up some pillows and was going to check emails before going to sleep -- and two HUGE bugs crawled across the pillow.  I am scared to death of bugs, especially HUGE ones, so I started screaming and you've never seen anyone gather their things and vacate a room as fast as I did.  The hotel clerk kept saying, "It's just beetles," and I told her the only beetle I wanted in my bed was Paul McCartney!  She did not think that was funny.

So I made it back out to my car and the storm was still raging so I didn't dare try to drive anywhere.  I decided to just sleep in the car.  Ugh.  I decided to check emails and had an email from my real estate agent telling me there's been an offer on my house.  Exciting news.

Monday morning around 6AM I got back on the road heading home.  One of my favorite places to stop is Colby, Kansas because (1) it has a Starbucks; and (2) it has a tropical look:

I got home around 2:30 in the afternoon, hugged my boys and called the real estate agent.  The offer was really low so we sent back a counter-offer and I'm waiting for a response.  And getting a lot of sleep.  Glad to be home.

Friday, July 22, 2016

Kevin's Photos

Kevin just sent me his photos:

Boots at the 50-yard Line:

Marilyn scattering ashes at the McGuire house:

Boots at the corner of where the old high school was.  It's hard to tell, but the initials "NB" are in the rocks (for North Baltimore).  We scattered ashes both in the rocks and in the grass around this area.

One Year Anniversary of Marshall's Death

I wasn't sure how I was going to handle my emotions today but it turned out to actually be a fun day.

Marshall's favorite nephew, Kevin, drove to Ohio from Minnesota with his wife and new baby.  Kevin is a kook so we did a lot of laughing and Kevin spearheaded an afternoon cavalcade to various spots in North Baltimore to scatter ashes.  (As an aside, Kevin has Minnesota plates and I have Colorado plates -- I was half expecting someone to call the police because we were behaving suspiciously...)

I had brought Marshall's well-used motorcycle boots with me and we decided that we would put the boots in every spot where we scattered ashes and photograph them.

First stop was Marshall's sister Audrey's house.  He spent many a day sitting on her deck, so we spread some ashes under the deck.

Second stop was the high school.  The high school is brand new and is not the physical school that Marshall attended so it was basically symbolic.  The school's mascot is a tiger and they have a huge beautiful tiger painted on the road on the entrance to the school.

Then we went to the spot where Marshall's high school used to be -- it is now a car dealership but they still have a small part of the school entry on one corner.
From there we went to the football field.  Marshall had told Kevin that if possible he'd like to have some of his ashes scattered at the 50-yard line.  Well, the football field had a fence around it, so Kevin climbed the fence and I threw the boots over the fence to him and he went out to the 50-yard line and took some pictures of the boots and scattered some ashes.  He took some pictures but he hasn't sent them to me yet.

And our last stop was Louie McGuire's house -- one of Marshall's high school buddies.  The house is empty now, but we went to the back yard and scattered some ashes and took a picture of the boots.

We went back to Audrey's house to regroup and cool down -- it is SOOOO hot and humid here.  We went to the cemetery at 7:30 and had a beautiful ceremony.  Audrey had arranged for the pastor to say a few words and the Honor Guard from the American Legion was there to do a 21-gun salute and play Taps.  It was very very nice and very moving (and still, very hot and humid).  There were about 20 people there and they all helped to scatter the ashes.  I was so hot I was getting close to fainting, so I had to get to the car and get the air conditioner going.  But it was really a beautiful ceremony. Marshall would have loved it.


Thursday, July 21, 2016

I made it to Ohio this afternoon

First of all, it appears that I have found a great pet sitter.  I left on my "pilgrimage" the morning of July 19 and that evening I got a text from her along with photos of my boys.  Really makes me feel okay about leaving them.

I was able to stay alert and awake and drive all the way through to St. Louis and spent the night at the home of one of my close High School friends, Donna.  We had fun reminiscing.
I left there on Wednesday morning and headed to Indianapolis to spend the night with another dear High School friend, Johnny.  Another night of fun reminiscing.
But as I was leaving St. Louis I remembered (don't know why this took me so long) that Marshall and I first met on  May 31, 1987, he was a truck driver and I was making one of my many trips to St. Louis from Chicago.  Marshall and I met at the intersection of I-70 and I-55.  I was heading towards Chicago and he was heading towards Indianapolis.  However, for some reason (he liked to say it was fate) he missed his exit at I-70 and stayed on I-55.  He had a CB radio and so did I.  He started talking to me at that intersection and we were together from that moment on.  I did a bit of crying at that intersection today as I passed by that sentimental spot.
Now I am in my hotel in Findlay, Ohio and I'm going to stay in for the night.  Tomorrow I'll meet up with Marshall's sister, maybe for lunch.  Tomorrow night we will be at the cemetery scattering the ashes.

On the way home, I plan to stop at John's again for a night and I also want to see my cousin Amy and her husband (who live in Indianapolis) so John and I will meet up with them on Sunday for lunch.

I sure miss Marshall.

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Scattering of Ashes

Sorry I've been gone so long.  I just couldn't get motivated.

But I am getting ready to go to Ohio to fulfill one of Marshall's wishes -- scattering ashes on a family cemetery plot.

I am leaving on July 19 and driving to Ohio.  Marshall's sister Audrey is putting together a little ceremony with the pastor and whatever of his family members that are able to be there and it will be on July 22 -- the one-year anniversary of his death.  Hard to believe, isn't it?

I am so grateful to Audrey for everything she does to put together these tributes to Marshall.

I've been doing a little research as to what the protocol is for scattering ashes and I've decided that I'm going to separate the ashes into a bunch of little baggies to pass out to everyone who attends so each person can scatter some ashes.  Marshall would really like that.  If there are any left, I will bring them back and scatter them at some point in West Virginia on the graves of his mom, dad and brother.  But, shush, don't tell anyone because it's against the rules of the cemetery (LOL).

My next issue is trying to figure out how to get the motorcycle in and out of my garage.  The custom pipes on the bike sit very low and they drag if I try to pull out of the garage through the "rolled curb" so some sort of ramp is going to be necessary.  I tried something called "curb ramps" and they moved when I tried to navigate the bike over them.  Then I tried other ramps but they buckled when I pulled onto them and I thought my foot was going to get caught.  Then I tried something called "Bridjit Curb Ramps" which are basically big pieces of rubber that lay in the ditch but they didn't work either.

So today I found some ramps online that are VERY expensive but look like they will do the trick.  I talked to the sales rep at length and he did the math with regard to angles and length, etc., and agreed that it would work.  So I ordered it (yikes) and it should get here when I get back from Ohio.  It weighs 100 pounds so my next struggle will be trying to get it from the garage to the end of the drive, but I should be able to do it with a dolly.  Anyway, maybe some day in the very near future I will actually be able to ride the darn thing.

I went to the cardiologist last week and he changed some of the settings.  I was not able to understand exactly what he did -- even after having him explain it three times -- but part of it was he wanted to let my ventricles work on their own without being paced by the pacemaker.  The pacemaker is still pacing the atria.  I've been feeling a little crappy, but he says to give it a month to see if I adapt to it.  I have to admit I like the idea of my heart doing the work on its own.

My eyesight is just unbelievably good.  Dr. Kevin May is the best!!

I've developed tremors and I'm told that it is probably something called Essential Tremors and there is nothing that can be done about it.  If they get worse I will need to see a neurologist.  Will this doctor stuff ever stop?  I feel like I'm being punished for having had 69 years of almost perfect health!!!

That's it for now.  I will post throughout the trip and the scattering of the ashes and then I will probably close the blog down.  It's time.....