Morning all:

We’re facing a spectacular weekend after a hot and very humid week. A week where last Wednesday night, in one and a half hours, we got three inches of rain and about 5000 lightning strikes in the area. I was told of this by Marcia since I slept through it—the morning television weather historians confirmed her story. Shang must also have been up since he slept all day. Did I mention that the morning coffee tastes especially good?

It’s been a bit of a slow week, both for me and family. One of those weeks where nothing jumps out and projects just move forward unhindered. A perfect week to grab a magnifying glass and look at a few things from a bit of a different perspective.

First look is at the neighborhood block party of last weekend. Always enjoyable, even when your wife “volunteers” you to write a column about it for the neighborhood monthly newsletter. I love the casual conversations and occasional in-depth one that take place. We had a Syrian and Irish person play together, each on a native to their homeland musical instrument – true fusion. Some sat and just talked around a little bridge table placed in the middle of the street–smoking a hookah. But, I wonder how appropriate it was for one rabid political activist to place a candidate’s literature on each and every table? Maybe she felt that all her neighbors were in her camp. Actually, I can assure her that some were not.

Last night Shang and I were walking when we passed a house where the residents had apparently been evicted. From scattered mattresses, odds and ends, to ripped opened bags of clothing, the yard, the sidewalk, and into the street, everything was covered with debris. As we circled around the piles I wondered whether this eviction was the result of a shattered dream, or a family that had established this as a pattern of behavior leaving landlords “holding the bag”. Then, as is most often the case, the thinking became self focused. Who now has responsibility for the cleanup? Will this have the potential to impact property values? Specifically, my property?

Last Saturday, returning with a trunk full of vegetables, meats, and other staples, my car got hit. I had pulled up to a light when the driver of a truck, already stopped next to me, wanted to move into the curb lane and since he didn’t look, creamed my front fender. For any number of years, about 30 or so, I have only cruised by as I saw other people dealing with these situations. Being involved I have to say that “time” slows to much less than half its normal speed. For example, I have read that our town has nearly 2000 police, and this is a complete myth. I discovered that there is really only one, and we had to wait for him to plod through every other circumstance before tackling ours. The fact that it was 90 degrees started to become a bit of an issue—remember the meats. The other driver got cited, our details were taken, and since we had the trunk filled with the previously described meats and fish, we were advised we could go on our way. Now my insurance company wants a copy of the police report which I can get downtown, after I end up paying a parking lot fee exactly equal to cost of the repairs to my car. My magnifying glass assessments—never drive your car with meats and fish in the trunk!

Adrianne has updated her Blog and it would appear that she experienced a tetany. I purposefully wanted to use the antique descriptor “tetany” to create suspense and hopefully draw you over to her site where you can read all about it much more graphically. Enjoy her update. In place of her title of “Training” I think that she should have called her post “I hit the reality wall and survived”. Isn’t it good that she is wonderfully resilient?

Adrianne, Marcia and I have made plans for us to call around three this afternoon before she heads out for another home stay; Sam’s calling card don’t fail me now. Check back for a possible update.

Ok Shang, stop staring, I’ll get the shoes on. Have a great week everyone.

Cheers,

Dirk

PS. Today the Tour De France circles the town of Besançon, home of my cousin and his family. Go Lance and go Guillaume. Click on the “Weeks Best” button.

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