On July 21 at 7:50 pm, my mother lost her battle to metastatic carcinoma and died peacefully in her bed with me by her side (picture of me and my mom at Diana's 'Concert on the Green', most likely the last photo I have of her out and about with me). She had been dealing with reoccurring colon issues (5 hospitalizations, 3 of which required surgery) following a bowel resection to remove a cancerous polyp found during a routine exam. The last 4 months were the hardest for her (and me), as she was in a lot of pain. She wanted to fight but only had one chemo session; she was unable to eat or drink anything (chemo requires at least 8 glasses of water a day...I was lucky to get her to do 3).
We had our differences, we argued more then we hugged but toward the end, we knew we loved each other and we tried to show it.
I miss you mom. :-(
At her request, she was cremated. Internment will be at Bellevue Memorial Park in Ontario, CA where she will be laid to rest with her brother Bill and parents Julius and Helen Hollis. There currently is no set date for the memorial mass or the internment. I'll send out notifications at least a month before so everyone that would like to attend can make plans in advance.
In a cruel twist of fate, my best bud also lost his mom this year. We had planned a road trip to Texas to visit a mutual friend of ours (and a pilgrimage to Dublin Texas, home of Dr. Pepper) but was called off last minute when I needed to take my mother to the emergency room (that pesky colon).
In 16 days, as a "do-(up-and)-over" of sorts, my buddy and I will be hopping the pond to Europe for a 18 day trip. Visiting cities list is:
Everything after Rome is up in the air with no definite plans so this may change. The plan is to pack for 4-5 days and just do or pay someone to do the laundry. I've picked up my international power adapters at Orvac Electronics for ~$8. I just ordered my carry-on bag: High Sierra ATQ Carry-on drop-bottom wheeled duffel thru Sunnysports.com (in order to meet American Airlines carry-on baggage guidelines). I also picked up a GPS data recorder for the trip (and future trips): i-Gotu 200 as it seems to be the only recorder that can do multiday recording (reportedly it can run for 160 hours doing 30-sec snaps plus has user definable on-off timers).
In the meantime, I started rebuilding the south side gate. Finished the north side one last month (before, during, after). The gate on the south side is a double but I was able to get all the mats for <$300...the north fence I think cost at least that much. Hmmm.
On the medical front of things I found these two articles via slashdot: Being slightly overweight may lead to longer life (yea...that's me) and Swearing provides pain relief (F$%#ing S%&#!...I feel better already)
Other links of my interest:
Addendum: Appearently, you can only have liquids in 3 oz and smaller containers that fit into ONE 1-quart sized plastic bag for carry-on (TSA pdf here). Target has ziploc-like bags with clear plastic containers for 99 cents that are in accord with this TSA rule.