Sunny Saturday

It is a beautiful blue-sky, sunny day in Gretna, Nebraska. The day reminds me of one that starts out cool and turns beautiful. Like when you rise early and load the car to go on vacation. You remember vacations! I imagine we’ll all want to go on one when this Coronavirus is over. It could be awhile.

I’ve always thought these to be stunning, but not too functional. Perhaps their time has come?
This is pretty much all on my mind today.
Blog, write, and later some block sewing. And thinking of our grandkids. I’m missing them all!

The kids and grandkids are all on my mind this morning. I’m praying for all of them, hoping all are well and going to stay that way. In the family are: a chef, a Federal Law Enforcement Officer, his stay at home wife who is a great homeschooler, a truck driver, a real estate agent, two who manage trucking of railway goods delivered to trainyards by the Union Pacific railroad (essential personnel), a health care worker, and a project manager director. Some of them are parents of our four grandkids, two in Omaha area, one in Maryland, one in Colorado. That’s a lot of diversity and some important, essential people on that list. They may be more exposed than most, and we have to keep living our lives. With common sense at the helm.

Common sense for them will be adequate distance from others while on the job, probably avoiding the subways, and washing their hands – a lot. All we can do is check in on them once in awhile and pray we’ll all come out on the other side of this ok. I believe we will. If not, we will learn how to deal with the end results.

The Babe tells me the last time he felt this way was in Vietnam. Not having any idea of what will happen is the feeling of loss of control. I get it. My feeling of loss of control was in December, 1995, when I had a tumor compressing my spinal cord and in a week lost the ability to walk without assistance. That was the worst feeling in the world, as my daughter was still at home. My sons had just moved into an apartment. I had to get better for my kids. And for me. The Babe had his wife, Sandy to come home to. He was never the same for her.

I would bet every adult who has had a feeling like this is having flashbacks, dreams, whatever there is that tells us we know this could go very badly. Acknowledge them. Don’t let yourself dwell on them, though. Yes, we were afraid after 9/11. We need to remember how we, as a country of free individuals, came to a new normal. A new normal of a free people. We will do that again. Things will not be the same as they are now. Hopefully we will be appreciative of people who really matter in life. Doctors, scientists, first responders, nurses, truck drivers, train operators , and our military all keep our counntry going. It’s time we reorient our thinking to look up to people who really make a difference in our every day life, not sports figures, movie stars, celebrities, and people who are famous for absolutely nothing. I find it very sad we need to get a Kardashian to go on social media to get young people to understand they need to stay home while school is out. It tells me some have lost their concept of real life. You won’t find it on a reality show, despite all you hear on social media or television or in the movies.

In the meantime, keep yourself busy with positive things. Create something with words, music, paints, anything you may have around you. Be inventive. Write a note to your Grandma or Great Uncle and mail it. They will love it! Talk across the fence to your neighbors. Take your dog for a walk. It’ll do you both good. Get some fresh air. Thank you for reading. I’ll be here tomorrow and hope you are, too. Now for some creating!

These folks have my deepest respect and admiration.

Thoughtful Thursday

Yesterday, when I was driving to pick up Mom for therapy, I drove past our Church, St. Bridget’s. The street was filled with cars in the parking. Many, many cars. Then I remembered it was Mr. Kaluza’s funeral. Mr. Kaluza was the Omaha Police Officer who lived with his family up the alley from us. We all knew him, and he knew all of us in the neighborhood. He worked very hard along with his wife to raise their six kids. I was friends with Peggy and Karen, Johnny was my brother Tom’s friend, and Kenny, Terry, and Colleen somehow fit with my brothers Steve and Tim.

Those six kids are so fortunate to have had both of their parents all this time – their dad was in his early 90s as is their mom. They still lived on their acreage in Springfield. I was moved to tears, though, as I passed the Church and noticed the row of motorcycles across from the hearse. Civilian motorcycles, and the two motorcycles for the escorts to ride. The escorts were also retired police officers. Mr. Kaluza rode past our house every day, in full OPD uniform, on his majestic Police Motorcycle. He always revved it a little to impress my little brothers. They have ridden since they were old enough. Lifelong passions for motorcycles were inspired by the officers such as Mr. Kaluza. How lucky we were to have him in our neighborhood. He was such a nice man. He loved kids. I found out later the civilian motorcycles were grandson’s who ride. What a neat thing, to help lead the procession.

Mom really teared up when we went back past the Church. She told me then another current neighbor died as well. Mr. Biggs lived down the street. Mom is the last one of many groups. She outlived all the old neighbors, except for Mrs. Kaluza. Mom’s the last one living in the old neighborhood. She’s about the last one of all the other people who moved into the neighborhood after the 1970’s. She’s the last of her sisters. And today, she looked very, very tired and worn. Insomnia is not her friend but it visited her again last night. Being overtired makes her vision worse. Yesterday started out very foggy, and that didn’t help. Again today, in this helpless situation, all I can do is pray for her and my brothers. And my kids and myself.

It is finally a nice sunny day here in Gretna. The day will be filled with errands. Grocery shopping. It is supposed to “snow” over the weekend, don’t know if it’s going to be a dusting or a blizzard. We’ll see when it’s over. Addison thinks it should just jump to summer. The minds of our kids. She is happy Spring Break is next week. It’s amazing kids go on trips for spring break. Little kids. Even twenty years ago, when my kids were in high school, they had friends who went on Ski Trips or Beach Vacations to resorts just like college kids do. It amazes me how people can afford such luxuries.

I must say, I’m so glad Harvey Weinstein was sentenced to 23 years. He deserves to pay for being a predator. The system tried him, proved him a predator, and has justly sentenced him. If he lives out his sentence, I’ll be surprised. It’s in God’s hands now. If each and every man accused of being a predator was a convicted predator and sentenced, I would be happy they were. It needs to be said. Even Trump, especially Bill Clinton, and anyone else in politics. That said, I was devastated when Bill Cosby was tried and found guilty. The one person who we thought we could trust with our children. A great responsibility was on his shoulders, being the first black man who broke the color barrier on American television. Great things are expected of a groundbreaker. And one of those things should be they are trustworthy.

And in my disappointment I will continue to remember. There are many, many more very good and moral men who touch our lives. Men like Mr. Kaluza. Men like my dad. Men like all my uncles. Men like many of my cousins. And that is where we get our momentum to continue on in spite of disappointments with life. It’s the every day heroes who make the difference. Rest in peace, Mr. Kaluza. The eyes of the neighborhood kids were on you. And you were a great role model. Thank you.

And thanks to all of you who read today. I appreciate it. I’ll see you tomorrow, hope you stop by.