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  1. One week from tomorrow is the 4th anniversary of C's death. It's hitting me harder than normal this year -- then I start to feel guilty about morning C while I have SP by my side. 😢
  2. MichaelS36

    Beloved

    I sit in the waiting room. Waiting for him; my beloved. I wonder about this word, so I decide to look it up. I look up its origins: late Middle English: past participle of obsolete belove ‘be pleasing’ and later 'love'. Interesting. We know it means love, dear, dearest, most loved. John, in his epistles, addresses his disciples as 'beloved'. Jesus Christ is the beloved son of God. To me, it is a word with deeper meaning than love. It describes a love that is of the soul; of someone who is a part of me. Someone who I'd sacrifice for, die for. That person is my beloved. That person is my husband. he that is all to me; beloved. he is mine and I am his, now and always. I think of these things because not to, is to lose what we share. I think of them because love needs tending, as does a garden. Ignoring love will cause it to wither and die as surely as not watering the garden will kill it.
  3. Long time no blog... Most people missed my last blog post because it didn't appear in the list of recent posts. That was a side effect of the delayed publication setting... There went another failed attempt at humour. The highlight of the past two months is obviously my trip to the Philippines and my visit to John. The GA meetup in London was great too, but ... no offence to the nice peeps I saw or met there ... it could hardly compare. So let's rewind to early August. The stakes were high when I took off from London because we had both invested quite a bit of energy, time, money, and emotions in the preparation for this visit. Some irreversible decisions had been taken. It is not my story to tell so I'll only mention that three weeks before my arrival John came out to his family and that the news were not adversely received. The main goal of the trip was to finally meet John in real life and to spend some quality time together. I think we did all right on the main objective. At least, John did not run away screaming when he saw me. It was quite an emotional moment to finally be able to hold him in my arms, and gaze in his eyes. Contrary to some of the teasing I was subjected to in London we didn't spend all our time in a hotel room. We visited places that John knew well, and others that we discovered together. So many things were new to me. I am no stranger to travelling: I have been to the US several times, to Latin America twice, and to several European countries, but this was my first time in Asia. There was obviously some culture shock, especially because, thanks to John, I was immersed into the Filipino culture. My experience would have been vastly different if I had spent all the time in a resort, cut off from the local population. Being a gay couple did not prove to be a problem there. I didn't feel that we were looked at or treated differently. The fact that I so obviously look like a Westerner may have played a role, I don't know... The Philippines is a very striking country in that it appeasr both reassuringly familiar and utterly different. The language is no barrier: pretty much everyone speaks English. And even if I didn't understand Filipino, it includes many words of Spanish and English origin and uses the Latin alphabet, so there is always some degree of familiarity. The landscapes didn't look like anything I had seen before, though some parts reminded me of the tropical forest surrounding the Iguazu Falls. I regret not wandering into rice fields on foot, but I got my fill of white sandy beaches, coral reef, and banana and palm tree plantations on Bohol Island. Manila is a world in itself, with its rush of people, the insane traffic, the heat and humidity. John had warned me about the poverty that I would not fail to witness, and indeed it was ever present. It was the first time that I was confronted to it on such a scale, apart from that one time when I got lost in the slums on the hills outside Acapulco. Anyway... I can't pretend to understand all the ins and outs of the economic and social situation of the country, so I won't dwell on that. I think I adapted well to the local food, apart from a few items that were just way too strange. The culture is also a mix of Western and Asian influences so there is always an element that you can relate to. I think I need to visit another Asian country in order to get another point of reference for what life is in that part of the world. After this short time together, we face the future on our own once again, but we are now looking in the same direction. We are aware of family and job commitments, and of the administrative obstacles which might prevent us from making a life together in the near future. However, we are both patient men, and we're in this together. * * * * * * * * * * * This new-found happiness sometimes brings memories of more ancient happy and unhappy times. I wrote part of the above in my note-book, while sitting on the imposing staircase which lies outside my former workplace and reflecting on how much my life has changed over the last 6 years. I used to sit there and cry when grief overwhelmed me and I didn't want to show my tear-streaked face to my co-workers. Mourning is a long process, which never really ends. It becomes part of you and leaves a scar. Most of the time, I forget about the scar, but sometimes it hurts a little. A few minutes ago, the radio started playing Pink Floyd's Wish you were here, which was played at my wife's funeral. And I shed a few tears, something I had not done for several months. At times, I feel fleeting pangs of guilt for embarking upon a new relationship, for leaving her behind... but that guilt does not last for long. As I wrote at the end of Through dark and cold seasons, she gave her blessings to the person I would love one day. She encouraged me to find a new love, and I have found it in John.
  4. It's been a long and crazy year. SP just left for work; we'll stay up & have a glass of Champaign when he gets home. Spent some time this week working on his house, but not as much as he would have liked. We have got a lot accomplished (I think). We made Hoppin' John for supper tonight, and there's enough for lunch tomorrow (a VERY Southern US dish for New Years that, in it's most basic form, contains rice, black eyed peas, ham and/or bacon, green bell pepper, and some cayenne pepper for a bit of heat). I'm going to attempt to make a tourtière [Quebec mixed-meat savory pie] for supper tomorrow night. Hopefully, it turns out well. Wish me luck. Our professional photographer should have our wedding pics done in the next few days; possibly as early as tomorrow. But thought I'd share this one of SP and I that my brother took [hope the link works]. We make each other very happy.
  5. Wedding is only about 8-weeks away and we're still trying to get some things nailed down. I keep having to remind SP that it's close than he thinks it is. The invitations need to go out and we don't even have a full guest list typed up yet! Not to mention minor things like FLORAL. <sigh> Just had to rant a bit this morning. I know everything will come together in the end the way it was meant to and am trying not to stress over it, but I'll feel better once all the details are nailed down.
  6. August 29, 1987 Los Lobos were on top of the US charts with “La Bamba.” In the UK it was Rick Astley’s “Never Gonna Give You Up.” Nolan Ryan passed the 200-strikeout barrier for a record 11th time. Ronald Reagan was President, Margaret Thatcher was the British PM, Brian Mulroney was the PM in Canada. Actor Lee Marvin died that day as well. It was a really warm Saturday afternoon in Denver, Colorado. The church was pretty full. The bride was crying happy tears. The preacher got angry when someone stood up to take a picture of the bride and groom. They were certainly very young, she was 23, He was 22. When they left the church, there was about 2 pounds of birdseed tossed in the air. Some of it got stuck in the bride's corset. The bride and Groom made their way to the reception venue slowly. The Groom’s aunties were providing the food, it was good and it was plentiful. There was no dancing as the Groom doesn’t dance. There was a string quartet playing quietly. There was, however, lots of hugging, and more tears. After the food was gone and people had eaten some cake the bride and Groom made their way to a nice hotel for the night. They decided to order a pizza and have a shower. He helped her out of the dress and corset, wiped the birdseed off and told her He loved her. After they showered, they called for pizza, turned on the Denver Broncos preseason game (Denver 24 - LA Rams 20) and promptly fell asleep. The pizza delivery guy woke them about 30 minutes later. That was 34 years ago. A lot has happened in those years. 2 cats, 5 dogs, 9 cars, 3 kids. 10 different addresses. 2 different states. It wasn’t all pretty, there were some really dark times. Even looking back, it’s sometimes hard to believe that they made it through. The one constant has been their love for each other. And the laughter. She told Him today, she’d do it all over again.
  7. SP and I got married yesterday -- the 1-yr anniversary of our first date. We'll need to take off Monday morning to return the license to the court clerk.
  8. SP and I are going to start pre-marriage counseling next week. Expect it to be a bit rough, but good in the long run. There are things in his past he thinks he's dealt with, that I don't think he has. We've had a few difficult conversations the last week -- not helped by my pain level having been extremely high for three days now -- but we'll work through things.
  9. We had the internment for my mom yesterday morning -- just my brother and I, our SO's, and my last surviving Aunt. My brother surprised both SP and me by asking if we wanted to go somewhere for lunch. Had a nice meal without any awkward silences, so that was nice. Maybe -- maybe -- he's changing some. But then just a couple of weeks ago when he stopped by to sign mom's life insurance paperwork he never even turned off the car. Doesn't seem like it's been almost 12 month's since SP and I had our first date, sending us down this road of our new relationship. He's said that there are doors opening in his heart he's kept closed for quite some time. Love him so much.
  10. My best friend sent me a txt at 6am this morning. She's in a hospital in OKC with a massive infection in her lower back. She's had multiple back surgeries in the last 10+ years. Two weeks ago her pain level was so high she was nearly suicidal. Not helping that her "pain management" Dr. cut back her pain Rx to a point where they're useless. She finally convenced them to take an MRI and they found a "raging infection of osteomyelitis in her spine where her hardware is. She kept trying to tell them something was wrong but they weren't listening. She has a PICC line [a line direct to the heart to deliver meds]. She had FOUR bone marrow biopsy's on Tuesday. The meds they started to use caused reactions that let to seizures and had the hospital call her husband and daughter (my god-child) to get to the hospital ASAP; her blood pressure rapidly went from 90/60 to 160/90. She's "better now" but can't use her legs -- she wasn't clear, but that sounds permanent And because of the COVID situation I really can't go down to see her. 😢
  11. On GA we have a great and friendly community. I've enjoyed my time here. I have met some wonderful people. I accept these people for who they are here, online. I use my real first name, Michael or Mike. I do not share my real surname here or on my email address. I believe in privacy. People can accept that or not. The majority I have met, do. The internet is a tool. It has much to offer and much to answer for. We need to be careful online and respectful of others. Much can befall people who are not careful. This goes especially for your personal information. To be liked and successful online, do not ask for private details, do not share yours. Don’t give people too much information about your job or your employer or school. You do not have to meet people in person no matter what they tell you or say. Watch your privacy settings on Facebook, and other social media. If you choose to meet someone, be careful. Never meet in private, never give your home address, make sure someone knows where you are and have a set time for them to call you to confirm you are okay. Be smart and be safe. If people want things from you ... money, information or anything that makes you uncomfortable, and saying no, I’m not comfortable with that does not stop them or satisfy them, then you may have to walk away. Anyone calling you friend, will understand and be happy with the relationship you have within your own personal boundaries. If they are not, if they draw a line in the sand expecting you to tell them everything to keep them a friend, then they were never your friend and do not deserve you in their life. Keep safe online. Enjoy your friends. Trust them, until you have reason not to. So this is a two-for-one blog ... you lucky people!!! (insert a laugh here) Love The world outside is hard and tiresome. We work, drive and slog through everyday living looking forward to going home when our duties are done. Home is a refuge for most of us. It is for me. It was when I was single, even more so now with my husband, tim. Millions of songs have said it … you are my everything, my reason. And tim is to me. When I step inside our apartment and close the world out behind me. There he is. All I want and all I need. I love him, like no other. Each day I am grateful to have what I do in my life. Tell those you love and care for how you feel. Share that because it is what the world and we all, need now. Thanks for reading.
  12. WARNING ***Discussion of race, religion, bigotry lies ahead. It's what I feel and think. If you don't like what I feel and think feel free to ignore this blog. If your mind is closed, do not read this blog. If you are afraid of your own truth, do not read this blog. If you are looking for honesty and acceptance, I hope you choose to read on. *** I've been thinking about what is going on in our world besides COVID-19. I wish it wasn't what has been happening. I've been debating saying anything about how I feel but an online posting by a woman, who is an educator just made me decide. I wish I knew her name but it's not on what I listened to. However, there is a lot online about this topic. About the scientific fact there is only a single race of people on the planet Earth. Like other groups of animals we come in various colours, shapes and styles. Cats, for example, come in a rainbow of colours, some with folded ears, some with extra toes, some with no tails or fur... do we shun tailless cats? Think of them as less of a cat because of this fact? No. Do we think they are dogs because they have no tail, or some other lesser species? NO! The same goes for skin colour. Skin pigmentation does not signal a different race, nor does your religion. As the lady says, believing that is stupid and wrong. The invention that Black people and others are a different race is, like religion, a human invention. It was made up because it was easier to believe that, so oppressors and slavers could defend what they were doing. We still do it. We decide based on skin colour, who a person is, what they are. Religion was made up also as a form of control. So a few could control many with the fear of the Almighty. Believe me, Jesus Christ, who I do believe existed, was not a white man. He did not have blue eyes and blond hair. But how can such wisdom come from someone not white? Because it came from a fellow human being with the same depth of being, of caring that exists in many of us today. We come in all colours. Yesterday, I listened to weeping Black women, who were being robbed in their own stores by other Black people, at gun point. They were saying, Black lives don't even matter to ourselves. It's heartbreaking. There are lots of instances of white people doing the same to fellow white people. Racism is alive and well, same-colour on same-colour violence and hatred is alive and well. We need to stop. We need to use our intelligence and see there are good and bad people in all colours and genders. Colour is not a marker, it does not define if we will be good, bad, intelligent, racist, quiet, loud, violent, gentle, loving or hating. There is no racism gene. How we behave and what we believe is learned. And we can unlearn it. Do not be afraid to look at yourself as I look at myself. Reach out to all your brothers and sisters and fellow humans, no matter what they call themselves, who they love or what they believe. As a very out Gay man I have fought for my right to BE. Black Gay friends have had it doubly hard. That is wrong...WRONG! IT NEEDS TO STOP. STOP THE HATRED, STOP BEING AFRAID. Love your fellow man. Yes, there be monsters but they are not defined by colour. Michael S. 6/6/2020
  13. SP and I bought promise / engagement rings today. His is 10mm wide - 6mm black band in the center, with two small silver bands on the outside, spaced slightly off the main ring; mine is a 6mm black band. It was good. We did not go to the cemetery today like I had originally thought I would. The last two years I had very strong "intuition" on what day and time I should be there. This year... nothing. That really upset me yesterday; then felt bad about being upset about it when SP and I are almost at our 6-month anniversary (the 27th -- which is also C's birthday -- which hasn't helped any). I think that lack of "intuition" was C's way of telling me to let him go. Not entirely of course, I'll always love him, but I can't look back and look forward too. Times, like yesterday, I still feel very torn by my emotions towards my Boy and my Darling; my past, and [hopefully] my future.
  14. It's a funny thing, marriage. We go through life together my husband and I. We work, commute, shop, watch TV, cook, eat, shower, make love, laugh, talk and all the other things we do, together each day. Often by rote. Often without a lot of thought. I care for him during those times he is in the troughs of depression. When he's ill. When he's afraid. During the nights when nightmares of the past haunt him. It's my duty as his partner to be there for him. It isn't a chore, it's a privilege to be married to him, and to be there for him. But life is filled with cycles. We go through them and sometimes I just wake up and see him. Who he really is and what he means to me. In those moments I know what love is. And it's so intense it takes my breath away. As I fall in love with him all over again.
  15. And I am … weary that is. There are times I just want peace, selfishly for myself. Fighting tim's depression, mood swings and self-loathing, wears me out, it tires me and breaks my heart. And today when I bent to pick up his ART meds, he no longer wants to take … today I wondered why I continue. That scared me, that question, because never before have I asked it. Valentine's Day is the worst day of the year, for him and so for me. It brings memories to my sweet husband, things, time and people that are lost to him. The lack, leaves holes and dark empty spaces no one and nothing can fill. I beg him to take his meds, remind him today is only one day and it will pass … that tomorrow will be a better day. he takes them, but I can see the disappointment in his eyes as that lie passes my lips. And I wonder for how much longer I can do this? How much longer will he bear what he does before he chooses to stop his meds? And I give myself a shake and go to shower. It's Friday and we have an appointment to keep.
  16. Nervous tonight. SP has to work tomorrow evening at his second job so our Valentine's date is tonight. Shaved my beard down close -- it hasn't been this tight in decades -- because he thought the longer one I had made me look older (probably did). He knows how long I've worn it that way and that this is only something I would be doing for him. Will leave here in about 30 min to go pick him up. Much more nervous than I thought I would be. Made sure to have his card and box of chocolates in the car; his flowers will be delivered to his office tomorrow. No idea where we are going to eat -- he arranged all of the evening plans.
  17. Warning: This is me whining, but trying to get my thoughts in order by writing them out. I left work early today not knowing if I was going to start screaming or crying; or just start doing both. This week has not been a good one. The weather keeps shifting back and forth by large jumps so the joints can't get back in balance before the next front hits. This is keeping my pain level above normal, and that is increasing my depression, and that is increasing my level of irritation. Partly because of this and partly -- I think -- because of the increased feelings for SP, C has been on my mind a lot the last few days. SP knows something is up because he reminded me he was there if I needed to talk. I wasn't going to because I don't want him to think he's competing for my love with a ghost, but I'm finding that to be deceitful; lies of omission. So I've decided I need to talk to him about C being in my dreams and how that relates to our beginnings. I'm pretty sure that SP will understand where these things are coming from. I've already said that my love for C will always be there. That won't fade as my love for SP grows, and he is aware of that. He actually brought up polyamory, and that is what led to that conversation. It's nice to be dating someone who is open to the idea of polyamory and the possibility of finding a third -- for the long term -- once our foundation is set. I Will Love You by Gin Wigmore came on this morning and I thought I was going to break down in my office - "So if you die before I do, I know the heartache will kill me too. So if I ever live again, It will be to find you." My brother sent a txt this afternoon telling me to call him when I had a chance. He never does that so I knew it wasn't good news. They brought dad from Skilled Nursing back to where he's been living for the last 9 years. Both my brother and I thought his memory would be better once he was back in familiar surroundings, but... doesn't look like it's going to be. He really didn't remember the building. He remembered the tractor in front of his door and a few other things but asked if he had lived there before. He didn't quite remember the person who's been cleaning his room for the last several years (who was sweet enough to come see him when he was in the hospital). Dad's also lost weight (11 pounds), which isn't good, and he's not as strong walking as he has been just a few days ago. Something is still wrong with his back. Nothing is broken but there's still too much pain for there to be nothing wrong. He did ask my sister in law if "this place can take care of my needs" so there is some self-recognition that he is going to need help. A good chance he'll be moved either to Assisted Living or Nursing Home in the morning. I know my brother is bothered by this, as am I; but it's the best thing for him. I need to try to call my brother back and get more info. He had to hang up when we were talking this afternoon because dad needed something. I hope to see SP tonight, but it probably won't be until tomorrow. I know I'm a mental mess at the moment. I need him but, at the same time, am afraid of letting him see me in this mental state.
  18. SP and I have had several conversations, and a couple have circled back to becoming partners but maintaining our individuality. Just ran across this quote from Kahil Gibran from The Prophet [if you've never read this, do so]:
  19. MichaelS36

    Worthy

    How do you tell someone who can't see themselves, they are worthy … of love … of life? I see the dark circles under your beautiful brown eyes And I wonder how I can fix it … Fix all the wrongs done to you in your life How can I take that pain from then and now? You do not see your own strength within you Life dealt you a bad hand You lived through pain, and horrors I cannot imagine I can only promise to be with you To hold you up and protect you when I can Don’t hate yourself for the days when you can’t face life when you need time to become yourself once again Be as kind to the man in mirror as you are to others Forget those who find glee in your pain, who taunt They are not worthy of your time or thought Don’t compare yourself to them or others For you are the dawn in my days The bright ember in my heart; the love of my life … … and you are worthy Of me and our everlasting love
  20. I thought I knew what love is. I thought I knew when I met tim. I thought I knew when he agreed to marry me. But walking behind him down the street, watching his such-long legs supporting his perfect ass and his black leather jacket sitting just at his sweetly slim hips, made me feel it deeply. This brilliant, sexy, funny, and deeply compassionate man was mine. Then he turned and he smiled at me. It was such a smile, it lit my soul with the brilliance of a thousand suns. I wondered what I'd done to deserve him in my life. tim is a good boy. At dinner he was so calm, so relaxed and happy, when the waiter offered a drink, he ordered a glass of chardonnay. Like you would. Except in our lifestyle, he should have asked me. he realised and looked to me, eyes wide. But today he'd been so happy, so in the moment, I smiled and waved away the small infraction. he knew … that was enough. And I knew. And I know and I hope in that moment, he knew just what he means to me.
  21. I'm not really a writer - things pop into my heat now and then and demand to be written down, but not good otherwise; and at the moment there's too many competing emotions to make any coherent statement. So I'm going to do what I've done before, and use a selection of song lyrics to express my feelings on this -- both my birthday, today, and the 1-yr anniversary of the loss of my boy at the end of the week. Kind of traces my emotions from the beginning or our relationship, and the hesitancy he had for so long because he'd been hurt so bad, to grief, to (not quite yet) healing: 1 -------------------- Please let me try to I can heal the pain That you're feeling inside Whenever you want me You know that I will be Waiting for the day That you say you'll be mine He must have really hurt you To make you say the things that you do He must have really hurt you To make those pretty eyes look so blue Now you can't see my love is good And that I'm not him 2 -------------------- There's a big old hole in the middle of you 'Cause somebody left you black and blue Yeah we all make promises we can't keep And they're paper thin but cut so deep One day we're together then we're apart Why won't you let me fill up your empty heart 3 -------------------- I never cried the way I cried over you As I put down the telephone and the world it carried on As I watch the sun go down, watching the world fade away All the memories of you come rushing back to me All I want to do is kiss you once goodbye, goodbye 4 ------------------- I don't want to swim the ocean, I don't want to fight the tide, I don't want to swim forever, When it's cold I'd like to die. 5 -------------------- 'Cause I'm gonna be free and I'm gonna be fine (Maybe not tonight) 6. -------------------- When you feel you've had enough From this world that's giving up on you On you... Sometimes we can relax walking through the fire And when it all turns to dust We'll watch the ashes light up and we'll rise We'll rise And we'll be fine (And we'll be, And we'll be) (And we'll be, And we'll be) ================================== Not quite to the point of "being fine", but I know I'll get there - if only because my boy would want me to. 1) Heal the Pain, George Michael; 2) Empty Heart, Grace Potter; 3) For a Friend, The The Communards / Jimmy Somerville; 4) When It's Cold I'd Like to Die, Moby, 5) Delilah, Florence+The Machine, 6) We'll be Fine, Rebecca Ferguson
  22. Like the title says not all things in life work. It's a shame, but it's true. My desire for our new boyfriend to become more in our little family didn't come to fruition. He decided it wasn't right for him and moved on. I've talked to him, but we'll leave it here for the moment. All of this was hard on tim. Especially since he'd grown so close to Jim. tim is willing to continue on this adventure - he has a big heart and wants to make me happy - but we will see. I am aware of other things he wants to explore, more related to our lifestyle, perhaps that's the best way to go. Hearts are nothing to be played with.
  23. Took today and Monday off. I'm not making it to Joplin for the Tri-State Gem & Mineral event because of unexpected car repairs but I did drive down to the same town C & I were at when we spent an entire afternoon wandering through antique stores. There were a couple of moments where his loss threatened to sneak up on me, but I tried to focus on the fun we had that afternoon -- the brief moments holding hands, the quick pat an the ass when we where out of sight of other customers -- the good memories to keep. I know that the first part of November isn't going to be good. I have a feeling that memories of his passing are going to overwhelm any thoughts of my 50th birthday; but I know he doesn't want me to be hurting.
  24. I suppose this piece should have a WARNING … if you are closed minded, cannot deal with things outside your own experience or what you think is 'normal', or believe that relationships with more than two people are wrong. DO NOT READ THIS. I have never been conventional. Well, I say that, yet, I wanted to be married. But I also believe you can love more than one. I believe that bringing others into a relationship for friendship and sex is a good thing and that it can work. Until last year, my husband resisted that. he was unsure, worried that I would love the other more, leave him possibly. We eventually did share with another couple we've known for a long time. tim came to realize that I would never leave him. That he is my main dance partner for life. And, if push came to shove … he is truly all I need. Knowing that has freed him. Freed him to not be afraid of both mental and physical relationships with others. That is not to say that we just jump into bed with everyone. We do not, nor do we want to. There has to be a connection, feeling … neither of us want some casual thing. Early this year an ex of mine, who remained a friend, came to me to talk and for some comfort. He'd been ready to ask his boyfriend to marry him. Just before that event, the boyfriend admitted he was tired and had met someone else. Someone he'd been having an affair with for nearly a year. My friend Jim was devastated. He changed his shift to nights only, so he slept in the day, making it easier to avoid life. One day Jim asked if he could spend more time with us. I said sure. I'm not sure how we ended up on the topic but he asked if we might consider more with him. He was missing companionship and sex. He and I had dated for a couple of years and we had parted for various reasons as friends, so I had no problem with that. I still cared for him a lot. And then I nearly messed it up by pushing too hard. It upset my husband, who knew who Jim was, but didn't know him. After some real honest talk, the three of us decided we needed to spend time together to get to know each other, to let things develop. I'm happy to say they have developed. We have this closeness now, a bond. We care deeply and continue to nurture this new relationship. I'm not sure how far it will go or where we may end up. But for now it feels good, and it feels right.
  25. Woke up early this morning (too early for a Saturday [ah - just remembered re-reading this that I need to reset my alarm!]) and drove up to attend my Aunt's Memorial service. Took mom so she wouldn't have to ride with my brother -- that and I have a handicap sticker. The slideshow / video her oldest boy made with a bit of help from my brother was nice. Could have done without the ministers congregational recruitment blah blah that I found a bit out of place and inappropriate for the situation. Was a short but lovely service. Mom managed to get through it ok. Had a little dinner afterwards, provided by the "ladies of the church" in an attached building. Had a few short chats with those cousin's I knew I wouldn't want to strangle, then took mom home, swung by to see dad on my way out of town and wish him a Happy Father's Day, then came home. Heavy rains coming in over night with possibly damaging winds (70-80mph), possibly tennis ball sized hail, and -- because everything is still saturated and full -- another chance of flooding.
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