Monday, January 05, 2004


Back home yesterday.
Back at work today.
Back online tonight (well, really started looking around yesterday).

My Christmas holiday with my family in Virginia ended up being a little longer and less merry than I had planned. My grandfather went into the hospital on the 24th (his and my grandmother's 60th wedding anniversary). The trip dramatically changed after that, and I spent a good deal of the next week or so at the hospital. As of last night, he was still holding on, barely.

My grandfather lived his life as well as anyone I've known. He was in the Navy in WWII, and has great stories about his experiences, most memorable about being a boat office at Normandy. After the war he worked in Manhattan as an executive headhunter, and can always tell a tale about an interesting character from those days. He retired at age 57 to move to Florida full time and fish. He began a second career writing about fishing in the local paper and sporting and fishing journals. He was one of the founders of a program that takes underprivileged kids out to teach them to fish and enjoy a day on the water. He and my grandmother made "happily ever after" look like a reality, not just a myth. He knew that he'd had a good run, and was able to tie up all loose ends in the last few months after realizing that the cancer was terminal.

While sad and painful and exhausting, those days spent with him and my family were actually very special. We told a lot of stories, cried, laughed, and spent more time together than I've spent with them in a very long time. It made me examine a lot about how I want to live, and how I want to die.

I'm glad to be home, and after a little rest, am looking forward to jumping into the New Year.


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