Morning all:

Autumn is here and it is in the air. All week the morning fogs have been a mainstay on the morning commute. Why, even this morning I had to park the coffee so that I could carry a flashlight while retrieving the morning paper.

While writing the Gulf Coast is receiving round two. I heard someone describe mother nature’s parenting efforts with New Orleans – “first wash, then rinse, then wash again.” I am amazed, seeing the devastation occurring now with Hurricane Rita. Why these major cities are dealing with centuries old concepts of earthen dams when modern engineering technologies are readily available. The Delta Works in the Netherlands is an excellent example of such an engineering marvel. However, this is the time for taking care of people. It has been heartwarming to see the response. While rooting around my brother George’s company website there are a series of photos of his team hauling a load of power generators and fuel to families in Covington, LA. He tells me that they are making another similar run this weekend.

As the pictures on the left prove we did manage to be part of Oktoberfest Zinzinnati. The picture that I did not insert was Marcia dealing with her buy-once-a-year 1-pound cream puff. This year she waited till the very end of our visit before buying. All the way home it was carefully cradled on her lap. In the house I noticed that it took thirty seconds to spot the empty container was in the garbage. Is that called “inhaling” something?

Last night Marcia said that it was high time for a quick Fall dinner—soup and a BLT sandwich. What she didn’t mention is that she was making the sandwiches with tomatoes from Cathy and Jason’s yard. I don’t know the make and model, however these are large and in color are a very dark burgundy. In taste they are simply heavenly. What a treat! Makes me want to re-evaluate my personal relationship with the garden—not.

I really do enjoy my name – Dirk. But, it is one of those names that lends itself to a higher than usual number of schoolyard variations; the ones kids love to jeer. Oh go ahead, think of a few and practice a few—out loud that is. Sure you can, nice going!

Last week a package arrived from Pieter and Jeanne. They had just gotten back from Holland and enclosed a gift for me, actually several! These are Dirk-Bags. “Dirk-Bag” you ask? Since I have been called a worse variation I focussed only on the real value in these. Given that I really do not need all of them I am making an offer. For everyone (in the USA) who has stuck with reading this week’s rambling post to the bitter end I am offering, absolutely free, a Dirk-Bag. You’ll love this wonderfully versatile, roomy, sturdy, chic, and strong bright red bag; great for shopping, the beach, trip to the dog kennel, and long very bumpy airplane flights. To receive your very own Dirk-bag all you need to do is drop me a note and enclose your mailing address. Then just sit next to your mail box and wait—first come first served till they’re gone.

We received a short note that Adrianne had arrived safely in Nuku’alofa for meetings: since she flies an ancient 78 year old DC-3 on this 350 mile trip that is always good news. This week its Happy Anniversary to Marcia—is it 35? I’ll be on the road so celebration is next weekend—I still think we should have a nice dinner and then see Al Di Meola perform. Feel free to call Marcia to try convince her she should say yes.

To everyone else, make it a great week.

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