I cannot believe it has been over a month since I wrote last. Weird. I can't remember going so long between sitting down and blathering on and on before.
There was the annual Christmas trip to NOLA. Good food, many drinks, lots of fun conversations.
The highlight, for me, was Christmas night in a little dive bar just off Jackson Square. It is a cash only establishment, only about 10 stools, and they run their beer lines through ice coolers to get it cold. We like to talk to the bartenders at this bar . . . they are usually some very interesting women. We'd visited the bar earlier in the trip and the bartender showed us these fake 10K bills someone left as a "tip." We were appalled at the pre-meditated assholery they represented.
She mentioned that she would be working Christmas night, so we made a point of going in so we could make up some tips for her.
During the couple of hours we were at the bar, a man came in. He was young, heavy, full beard, and looked as if he had lost his best friend and last dollar at the same time. Others, regulars, in the bar knew him and tried to talk to him. He just stared at the empty beer bottle he'd brought into the bar with him.
At some point, the talk turned to music and the bartender mentioned that the young man was a gifted singer. Other tried to talk him into singing for the group, but he just said that someone would have to buy him a beer first. So, I did.
And, he was a trained opera singer. He belted out two pieces that were so powerful we were sure glass was going to break around us. He translated the words, and talked about the composers. This was clearly his passion and it cheered him up, for the moment. And, it was amazing.
But, even more strange and bizarre . . . the events of the past few weeks.
A couple of weeks ago, I awoke one morning to a fairly bizarre physical condition. I won't go into much detail other than to say . . . it was weird and immediately prompted a trip to the emergency department of our local hospital. They assessed the situation and immediately sought to transfer me to a larger facility. I ended up in a hospital a couple hours away for the next five days. There were several CAT Scans and lots of blood drawn. The doctors tell me that this condition is one that developed at birth but had remained undetected until now. And, they say it is extremely rare and will require surgery to correct.
So, for now, I have a couple different medical devices attached to me to control the situation and am laid up at home until I can get a date from the surgeon.
Poor Phenom has been forced into the position of nursemaid and housekeeper. A role that I suspect is shaving years off his life, but he is doing with as much care and consideration as one could ever ask for from any human. Frankly, there have been times that I've wondered if I have ever taken as good care of the Phenom as he has take of me these past few weeks.