I got back from my Uncle D's funeral last night. I've been wanting to do a really good post about it, but I'm not sure I'm able. Maybe I'll try later, or maybe I'll just keep it private. But for now... WOW, what a family. Thanks, Thorps -- it's an honor to be one of you.
Uncle Dale, Dale Thorp of Kansas City, passed away Thursday night at 10:01 PM. His daughter and son and wife were there with me at his side. He had suffered from and bravely fought cancer for 16 years, but when it spread to his kidneys, causing them to fail, he decided enough was enough and to go out on his own terms.
He did so with the calm business-like courage that characterized his life.
Yes, I'll miss the man terribly -- he was always fun to be around and a font of good advice when you were smart enough to take it. How I wish we could have him back hale & hearty. But he was neither. The diseases he fought had left him with nothing but the dregs. He had drank the cup of life to the bottom and he wisely knew his time had come.
I hope I can be as brave when my time comes, and I hope my family is there with me as ours was with him.
Heck, if he'd been lucky enough to die in his home town of Kansas City, Missouri, the hospital would have had to rent a hall to accommodate all who would have wanted to be at his side.
Thanks for all your help, Uncle D. You were the greatest Uncle a boy and a man could have.
PS - A nice shout out to the nurses and staff of the Physicians Medical Center of Naples, Florida. Y'all were just fantastic. Much obliged.
My 10 year old son was complaining of a stomach ache Wednesday afternoon. 26 hours later he had his first ambulance ride -- a trip from one hospital to another for an emergency appendectomy. Turned out his appendix was gangrenous, and enough infection leaked out to necessitate an extra night in the hospital.
I'm here to tell you that our medical/legal system sucks, at least right up to the minute the O.R. prep begins. From there to discharge is really great, staffed by smart caring people. Now that we're home, the real nightmare of insurance claims can begin. I can't wait.
Best to focus on the fact that my son is alive and well and home with his sisters, his dogs, and his dad.
I dropped down my line. I waited for about 30 seconds and the tarpon bit . I started to reel as fast as possible. And there was a ton of boats all around us so I got my line twined with about 4 to 5 other lines. Most of them lost their tarpon, but I didnt!
And then the tarpon started bringing us out to sea. It carried us a mile and a half out which brought us into "shark town" and he was bleeding alot! So we tried our hardest to bring it in, but it woudn't cooperate so it took me 1 hour and 50 minutes to get him to the boat. He ended up to be 140 lbs and 6 ft long!
Hummingbird Finally, my first hummingbirds. Saw them on a fire bush in Crystal Beach, FL. My rental's neighbor's yard is all xeriscaped, which is ugly to me but just fine with the little hummers. At first, I thought they were the biggest hornets I'd ever seen.
Flamingo! One of these dudes flew right over my house. I couldn't believe it. And please don't tell me it was a roseated spoonbill because it was a frickin' flamingo, dude! Huge and pink and right there above me. I was like so freaking out, you know?
Falcon! Don't see these guys too often. Wish we did. Bet the morning doves don't.
Black Skimmer These beauties are getting scarce, but one flew by yesterday at low tide on the hunt for minnows.
Dead sea turtle cool, but smelly
Reddish Egret These have been hanging out around the pool quite a bit lately. Must be a new group of adolesent birds -- the youngsters like to hunt where the water is clear, and it takes them a day to figure out there are not now and never will be fish in the swimming pool no matter how clear the water.
Brown Pelican I saw a flock of about 200 of these at Disappearing Island yesterday, just south of Anclote Island on the west coast of FL. Good to see such a large flock.
Wood Pecker They've developed a sudden interest in the orange tree, which just went into bloom.