It’s been three months since I returned from Africa. A lot of stuff has happened. One thing that hasn’t happened is LiveJournal posting. Let’s see if I can get things reasonably up to date. Below are some things that have happened…
- On my first week or so back I cooked three meals a day for my Mom, Tim, Tim’s mother, and myself. I’ve never cooked so much food before. I mostly improvised. It went well: everything tasted reasonably good and my mom lost weight.
- On my second week or so back I flew to San Francisco had surgery number three for my arm. It was kind of on a whim. I went to the same doctor who couldn’t get the metal plate out on the last try. This time he got the plate out. I’m healing up well: so far the scar looks much better, and I just did pushups the other day and there was no pain.
- I turned 34. So did Sophie.
- I tried regular Starbucks coffee for the first time. Previously I’d had only their latte drinks, which are okay. Starbucks coffee is truly awful. On the other hand, Caffe Mocca in Union Square and Ritual Coffee Roasters in the Mission are both really great. Caffe Mocca is for anyone. Ritual is for serious coffee drinkers and (apparently) Apple laptop users only.
- I sold my blue Prius. I didn’t need it in Florida, and it’ll just depreciate. We got a good price for it. Sad to see it go; I liked that car a lot. Sophie still has the red one.
- I went back to Florida for most of June and continued to cook for my Mom and Tim. As of the time of this posting she’s lost 50 lbs and has regained the ability to walk and drive. Through experimentation with diet and a blood glucose meter, we have her diabetes completely under control without drugs. The skin infection she contracted in April flared up again, but she’s finally been prescribed antibiotics for that, so I expect a full recovery there. Overall, I’m very pleased with the results, as is my Mom.
- While in Florida I worked on a little handyman project, something I haven’t done in a while. I installed some outdoor speakers in my Mom’s back yard and wired them up so she can play iTunes through them. Adds to the ambiance for a warm evening swim.
- In early July, I came back to San Francisco to visit with Sophie. I got geeky and helped her pimp out her computer with RAID and a decent backup and archive solution. She generates hundreds of gigabytes of month of data, possibly outpacing Zappos.
- I went to a very cool bachelor party. It included go-kart racing and a “stripper”. The bachelor wasn’t really interested in having a stripper, but he does like playing the “Magic: The Gathering” card game. So we did the impossible: we found a hottie who played MTG and was willing to dress up like a stripper, walk into a roomful of guys, and instead of getting naked she’d whip out a deck of MTG cards and challenge him to a game. There was much doubt as to if this would work out in reality as well as it did in our imagination, but our fine lady successfully pulled off both the pseudo-stripper act and the MTG portions flawlessly. Yes, you can find absolutely anything on San Francisco’s craigslist.
- Took part in the second triennial “Retahded Olympics”. Before anyone gets too offended, “retahded” is colloquial Bostonian for “stupid” and has nothing to do with any type of handicap. With that out of the way let me say that these olympics feature a series of stupid events designed to make you look a little, well, stupid. Included this time around were such fun as “office chair slalom”, “huge bag toss”, “marshmallow mouth catching”, “boxed foot race”, and “blindfolded box stacking”, among others. I took the gold in the latter two. If you need boxes stacked, and you need the stacker to be blindfolded, I’m your man.
- Went Bhangra dancing at a place called “Rickshaw Stop” with Sophie and a bunch of her friends. This was a total blast. In my limited experiences at San Francisco clubs, I had been pretty disappointed at how little dancing there was. There’s things about Las Vegas that I’m not a fan of, but I did like how you could always find plenty of clubs where people were actually dancing. San Francisco clubs seemed to me positively uptight in comparison. But Bhangra night at the Rickshaw Stop changed that. This was hands down the most intense dance club I’ve been to. At least in part because it has no air conditioning; so everyone gets terrifically hot and sweaty and there’s no hiding it and nobody cares.
I’d say that’s probably the highlights. It’s been an enjoyable three months. I like not working. I like spending time with people I love. I don’t like that the Las Vegas house hasn’t sold. I don’t like that I’m not doing much in the way of creative projects yet. I’m still trying to figure out what’s next.
I’m amazed at how compartmentalized my mind can be. Africa is just a memory; an unforgettable one, but a memory nonetheless. Things are roughly the same for me as they were before.
I got a snail-mail from Zenzo. His child was born premature and died. But he still seemed in good spirits in the letter. I will write back to him soon.