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Barbara Fritchman Thompson
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Barbara Fritchman Thompson Diary

Week of 22 July 2002

Latest Update: Sunday, 27 April 2003 08:39

Monday, 22 July 2002

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As we get closer to home we again have long traveling days as the tour is winding down. We drive by or through Peoria and Bloomington, Illinois and Indianapolis, Indiana before turning south toward Louisville, Kentucky where we spend the night.



Tuesday, 23 July 2002

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Heading for home today passing through Renfro Valley, KY on our way towards Knoxville, TN, Asheville, NC and Level Cross, NC. I know we will be tired and glad to be home but I bet absolutely thrilled with all the sights I have visited. We drove through 14 states and two Canadian Provinces.

Once I get my pictures developed and the ones on the digital camera transferred I will began working on the trip page. Being gone 18 days I will have a lot of things to catch up between finding out how Bob and The Guys got along and mail and stuff.



Wednesday, 24 July 2002

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Hi everyone, yes I am back! As always, I am glad to be home. After 6197 miles we were all a bit road weary but the things we saw made it all worthwhile. We were up every day at 5:30 or 6 am getting breakfast and dressed to be on the bus by 8. Some days it was well after 7 before we reached our next hotel after a full day of site seeing. We had only one stop where we stayed in the same place two nights. The trip was grueling on the body but the mind and eyes were heavily rewarded.

I took 21 rolls of film. I will start taking a few rolls to be developed at a time while working on the narrative for my trip page. My mom and dad did very well on the trip and we all had a wonderful time. I can't really put into words the beauties of nature I witnessed on those 18 days so I will let the pictures do most of the talking.

However, first priority is the home front. If you also read Bob's page you know the day after I left Lenore took a nasty fall and broke both her legs. Poor Bob has been coping with her being in the hospital and subsequently moved to a nearby nursing home while I was off on that wonderful trip. While things around the home front are a little jagged at the edges the core is still fully intact. He did a wonderful job keeping things held together while I was gone.

Today I will began the process of getting things back to normal. This morning while I get started on the bushel of laundry from the trip I will do some house cleaning, unpacking, and general inside chores. This afternoon we will go over and visit Lenore. I will get a list of things she needs and work on getting that side of things organized as well.

The dogs were very excited to see me. Bob brought them along last night when he came over to pick me up from my parents house. Guess I better get started.



Thursday, 25 July 2002

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Things are returning somewhat back to normal at the Thompson Techno Grotto. I put in a load of laundry to wash while Bob and I made a quick trip over to visit Lenore yesterday morning. On the way home I dropped off the first five rolls of film to be developed. Back home I got the first big chore out of the way, cleaning the house. I vacuumed and cleaned the bathrooms and straightened up. Once the house was clean and organized I was feeling like my day was a total accomplishment at that point.

After a quick lunch I sat down at the computer to wade through my mail messages. After deleting all the junk and keeping the important ones I hit the shower. Than Bob and I went to the library and back over to the nursing home to take some books and things Lenore wanted me to bring. After that visit we came home so I could fix us a good homemade dinner. While very simple, pork chops and rice, it tasted wonderful to me after 18 days of eating out and to Bob after 18 days of frozen dinners and pizza. 

Next job was to do a quick scan of the 18 days worth of newspapers, mostly the local section to catch up on local news missed while I was away. Around 7 we did our last nursing home visit. On the way home I dropped off some more film.

By the time we got back home I had just enough time to read a few more newspapers before walking the dogs and heading to bed. We had some late day storms that brought a little rain but we need a lot more. The lawn needs mowing in spots but can wait until I get other more important things out of the way first.

This morning I am off to the gym for Body Pump and the grocery store. I did find a workout room three times while on the trip so that I could either ride a stationary bike or walk on a treadmill. One hotel had some weight equipment. But, I also got in a lot of walking and hiking on the trip itself. I did forget to mention yesterday about the weather. It was hot the entire time we were gone. Even in the Canadian Rockies in the small town of Banff, Alberta it was in the high 80's. By the time we got to the Midwest it was well over 100 several days in either actual temperature or with the heat index. Just beastly. But, we also had perfect weather. The only time it rained was at night or while we were riding in the bus going to our next destination.

There is a lot more to do today but I am gaining on it slowly. 


Friday, 26 July 2002

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I forgot to mention yesterday that is was my dad's 80th birthday. I did not forget it was his birthday I just forgot to mention it on my page. The reason I let it slip is because I just spent 18 days seeing him everyday. We did a little birthday celebration on the bus trip so in my mind I had already celebrated this great event. 

Eerie silence. That is what it is like around here. I noticed yesterday afternoon in one of the brief lulls of activity that it was so quiet in the house. Then I realized that there was not any television or stereo noise coming from Lenore's room. With things still pretty active for me in trying to get caught up I just did not realize it until yesterday afternoon. It seems weird to be taking the dogs out for their last time and not doing our usual routine of getting Lenore ready for bed.

It was great to get back to the gym yesterday. After I got home from the store I fixed lunch than continued with the post trip activities. We had several thunderstorms in the early afternoon so I postponed my shower until they passed through. In the interim I gave Bob a much needed haircut and finally got all the mail in my inbox and folders caught up. 

We made a quick visit to the nursing home late in the afternoon before returning home for me to fix dinner. After dinner we went over to Frances' house for ice cream and cake. She had fixed steak for dad for his birthday dinner. We stopped by the nursing home on the way home to give Lenore a piece of cake. It was almost 9:30 by the time we got home.

This morning I am off to run some errands for Lenore. The nursing home is having a talent show performed by the staff at 1:30 today so I plan to be there for that.

Last night we had a pretty bad storm rumble through. When all was said and done we have now had a total of 3" of rain. YAHOO! There was actually flash flood watches in the surround counties which will be good for lakes and streams. 

Things are rolling right along. I have a large stack of magazine reading to catch up on over the next several days but otherwise have things now pretty much under control. It's great to be home again!



Saturday, 27 July 2002

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Many of you may not know Jerry Pournelle of Chaos Manor. He had to have his dear friend and long time canine companion Sasha put down yesterday. His beloved Husky lived to the ripe old age of 16, a very long life for that size dog. I know what a blow this is to both Jerry and his wife Roberta. Being a dog owner and lover it represents the loss of a family member as precious as any living being on earth.

Another long day but I seem to be gaining on the things that need to be done around the house. I actually had time yesterday afternoon to get started on the trip page. I have all the pictures developed and need to get started sorting those for the album as well as the ones I want to scan for the web page.

While I was on my trip I did get two mysteries read. One was the latest Melissa Cleary, In the Dog House and the other was Unsolicited by Julie Kaewert. The later is the first of three novels in Kaewert's Booklover's Mystery series set in London. The plot is centered around Plumtree Press run by Alex, the son of the man who started the company. Plumtree is in the process of publishing a second work by a mysterious author known only as "Arthur". In this second work Arthur is about to reveal the real persons behind the smuggling plot of British children during WWII. When the last five chapters of the novel fail to appear at the publishing house things start to go haywire. Alex is almost killed, several times, and several people who are involved do get murdered. As Alex continues to unravel the sinister plot to keep the last five chapters from being published he meets up with many unsavory characters in some very unusual places. 

I thought the mystery and the characters were very well done. This seems to be a great series. I have the next two to dive into once I get caught up on all my other projects.

Last night I mowed the grass when we got back from the nursing home. This morning I need to go out and edge the walkways and pick up the big sticks that fell during the storm the other night. This afternoon the lady that used to come here to do Lenore's hair is going over to the nursing home this afternoon. So, Bob is doing the morning visit while I work in the yard and I will do the afternoon visit. Then I guess we will do the evening visit together.

While the temperatures themselves are not that bad, in the low 90's, the humidity has been brutal. 


Sunday, 28 July 2002

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Things are gradually getting back to normal around here. Yesterday morning I finished grooming the lawn back to acceptable status while Bob took a run over to the nursing home. I let the dogs out to help me for awhile but the heat and humidity was very bad so I let them back in while I finished up. I came in and took my shower and started working on my trip stuff while waiting on Bob to get back so I could fix lunch.

I spent a good deal of time yesterday afternoon working on the narrative portion of the trip report until it was time for me to go over to the nursing home. Carol was coming at 3 to do Lenore's hair and I wanted to be there in case she needed help with anything. After Carol finished I put a clean shirt on Lenore and got her settled back in before returning home.

Bob and I both went back over after dinner last night for another short visit. We walked the dogs early, about 9:15, and I headed off to be to read. I had the light out by 9:45 and slept in this morning until almost 8. Between getting things caught up from being away and these nursing home visits I am pretty tired by bedtime.

Today is regular cleaning and laundry day. I need to tackle Lenore's room first and then do a quick vacuum of the rest of the house since I just did it on Wednesday but I did not dust.

Even though we need to make a nursing home visit this afternoon I hope to get back in time to watch most of the race from Pocono. I still have a fairly large stack of reading stuff to get caught up on as well. We are under heat advisory for this afternoon too.



Copyright 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004 by Barbara Fritchman Thompson. All Rights Reserved.