5 Day Diary of a Crazy Old Man
Tuesday, July 19: Home again. Seems like I’ve been gone for three weeks. Wow, I have. No wonder the cat is pissed off. Wk.1 Cool, foggy climate of Northern California with high temps in the low 60s. Wk 2 Perfect weather in the seventies in Napa. Wk 3 Hot, humid Indiana weather, but surrounded by great friends, and warm and loving family. I’m exhausted. Traveling isn’t much fun anymore. My life’s timing was horrible. Just as I expanded my ass, the airlines shrunk the seats.
Wednesday, July 20: I can’t believe I slept this late. My watch says its 10:30AM as I’m having my first cup of coffee. The cat is still pissed. I give my wife hell for sleeping till 11:45 and she reminds me I didn’t turn my watch back three hours. Oh.
I’m exhausted and can hardly move all day.
Definitely a decompress day.
Thursday, July 21: Start feeling normal around noon. Actual time. Unscramble my brain to get a to-do list remembered. Ahhhhh, a band gig tonight…outside. Wow, fun. Tear down my equipment in my music room…keyboard, amp, cords, stand, etc and load in my car. Step outside and 97 degrees slaps my face. Go back to load a fan and a couple bottles of water. A breeze picks up around 8PM and saves us from dropping like flies. Big crowd, fun gig, we sound good. When I get home every inch of my skin is soaked in sweat. I try to cool down while the “Donald” is giving his 75 minute zombie-apocalypse teleprompter speech. Sounds like he plagiarized Nixon. Suddenly remember I have to write my Friday post for this blog. Haven’t missed my self-imposed deadline for six years.
I need a shower and convince myself I’ll write it early Friday morning. Seven seconds after dozing off my small brain alarm starts beeping…Appointment tomorrow, appointment tomorrow.
What? I get out of bed…it’s midnight, pull up my Google Calendar and damn…who would schedule a 7:30AM doctor appointment? Me would. Damn. Well, I figured I’d write my post after the early appointment.
Friday, July 22: Eye doctor has other ideas. Triple doses of dilating poison. Three hours later I can hardly see to drive home in sunglasses. I sit in the dark for the rest of the day. Big dinner plans with our monthly dining group. Out of town. Exquisite food, fine wine, great friends. Hurry home. Have to pack. Early train. No post for blog today.
Saturday, July 23: 3:30AM: Three alarms go off at once. Don’t trust any of them so it’s a triple-check play. Didn’t make wife happy though.
Heading to hotel near Oakland airport.
I have a Board Meeting with the California Writer’s Club.
Need to do some writing so a train is my best bet.
Amtrak pulls out of station at 4:25AM.
I can never sleep on a train. Clackety-clack, grinding, swerving, hissing, and loud talking. But I get some novel writing time. Arrive in Richmond at 10:30AM. Sixty degrees. Nice. Next to the Amtrak tracks are the Bart tracks. I love BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit). When I lived in the bay-area I rode it to Giants games, A’s games, Warrior’s games and anything in between. It goes 80 miles an hour, 135 feet underwater crossing the bay and carries a cast of characters the best novelist in the world couldn’t make up. Today I see a dude on a hover-board stay on the board for his entire 30 minute ride. I’m glad it didn’t catch fire. I get off of BART at the coliseum, give a silent toast to the Raiders, A’s and my Warriors and carry my two cases up a long flight of stairs to catch the overhead shuttle train to the airport. I get off at the airport, call my hotel shuttle and get to my hotel 30 minutes before my van shuttle picks me up to go to our board picnic at the beautiful Joaquin Miller Park high in the Oakland Hills. Joaquin Miller and Jack London were founders of the California Writers Club over one hundred years ago. It’s a great organization and I’m proud to be one of the twenty one board members. Shuttled back to the hotel in the early evening and like most of my hotel experiences the bed is far too squishy. I wake up every couple of hours with sore stiff back.
Finally move to the floor and get a few un-interrupted sleep hours.
Sunday, July 24: Meeting starts early AM. Lots of good stuff so I’m surprised how alert I feel all day. Another van shuttle to BART and arrive over an hour early before my Amtrak departure. It feels icy cold to me. It’s 59 degrees and I swear it’s below zero. I call my wife. It’s 107 degrees in Bakersfield. I shut up and enjoy the freezing cold. I’m too much of a wuss to stay in the cold so I drag my bags three blocks up the street in downtown Richmond to a very dirty, crummy, yukky Burger King. But, It’s warmer inside.
As I’m walking to a back table with my “big fish” sandwich (that’s their name for a small fish sandwich) a very downtrodden young girl in multi-layers of clothing beckons me over. I ignore her but do contemplate buying her coat from her. She keeps looking at me and saying, “Mr, Mr, Mr, please help me.” I walk over to her table and ask her what she wants. She says she’s starving and asks if I would please buy her a #7. I buy her a #7 (whopper, fries and small drink…she stipulates a Sprite) and she consumes it in about three bites.
Right now I’m one half hour from home and we’re one half hour late. Will be de-boarding train at 12:30AM this morning. I’m scheduling this post to publish at 8:30AM. Don’t call me. I’m exhausted.