Saturday, January 12, 2013

Another Week In Paradise...

The past few days have been enlightening in a few ways here.

Firstly, I certainly hate the cold weather! The news from back in Kelowna is grim with all the snow and cooler temperatures. In Palm Springs this week, it has been sunny and cool for the region, but 65-degrees during the day is just fine, thank you!

We travelled up the Aerial Tram here on Friday and when we arrived at the top of San Jacinto Mountain, the temp was 19F (that's -7C). Way to cold for my liking and I suppose just a taste of what is to come when we get home in a couple of days.

The circulation in my hands and feet is terrible right now, a side effect of the chemotherapy drug and subsequently, a low-iron isue with my blood count. I will also be looking into any potential thyroid issues when we get back home.

My brother Garth, in Saskatoon, celebrated his 49th birthday yesterday. As I sat in a hot tub outside at 7:45am yesterday, I sent him a text with birthday wishes. He responded with a note that he was shoveling snow and the temp was about -35C. Good times!

Secondly, we continue to connect with amazing people while enjoying our vacation.

Brad and Donna Miller have been very generous...we are enjoying their little winter hideaway down here as it provides all of the comforts of home. Plenty of space and everything we need. They are set to return here soon and there will be a few extra goodies here awaiting their arrival.

We enjoyed a phone call from Myrna Baillie, a lady with extensive history at the Shannon Lake GC back home. Gay and I have enjoyed their hospitality down here in the past...she and her husband Bob Siwiecki. She is just so upbeat! Bob is battling an illness these days, a tough go for a rough and tumble guy who appears to me to be a very young "75". We weren't able to get together here as Bob was nursing a bit of a cold as well. It's funny how tentative folks get, myself included, when immune deficiencies might be put to the test.

We also received an nice note from Sheryl Parr, who always seems to send us timely and inspirational thoughts. Like her entire circle of friends, we so miss her husband Chuck, who passed away suddenly a little less than a year ago. Yet Sheryl soldiers on and keeps busy with her family and friends. We're so glad she'll be enjoying some southern USA sunshine in the coming months.

The highlight down here was dinner and our visit with Gail and Larry Ollenberger. Gail is my mom's sister. They are very generous and have become amazing friends in recent years. There is something so very comfortable about their home in Rancho Mirage and they have created such a wonderful, easy feel. Larry has been an important resource for me as I have tried to tap into his philosophies and his ability to understand the importance of family and personal relationships. I grow inside each and every time I have an opportunity watch him interact and when I hear him speak. My cousin Jana and her husband Travis were also here with their children, so I know Gail and Larry have had a full plate entertaining everyone.

When I look at our "family tree", I am the oldest grandchild on my mother's side, and I think Jana is about 10 years younger than me. There have to be about 20 or 22 grandchildren out there and admittedly we have all lost touch with each other over the years. It was a treat to re-connect with Jana. We are so blessed Gail and Larry chose to include us yesterday!

Golf has been infrequent here, which is kind of a drag, but I have made the commitment to listen to my body. It's frustrating to be such a bone-rack these days! It is difficult to feel as though I am swinging in balance. I am hitting enough solid shots to at least feel competent, but I am losing shots to the left because my lower body is so weak. This produces lateral movement that I am struggling to control. I call these miss hit shots a "lazy, hanging block". It's just gross! My hips ache after hitting golf shots, so I will have to pace myself. Problem is, I have to admit I do not really know how to do  this, because I have never had to worry about it in the past. So, I have a learning curve to get used to. We'll play today, fully three days after we played last, so I wonder how things will feel tomorrow???

My throat continues to hurt...par for the course I suppose. So, it's just gargling salt water and waiting for the healing to run its course. I am pretty much off any treatment-related drugs...just multi vitamins and iron supplements. Food is certainly my friend these days, and I am slowly beginning to enjoy a love affair with Coors Light!

Homeward bound tomorrow!!

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