Not The Slightest Clue

I have a faint memory that my parents have identified from my description as taking place in 1969. I was 3. I remember a hospital room and being inside an oxygen tent. I also remember being angry at the nurse for stealing my blanket, brought to me from home, when I would fall asleep. I was unconscious to anything else in the world. Never did I imagine that during this same time, that world was much different for my uncle.IMG_20180822_215013

Between the months of August 1968 and August 1969, My uncle Russ was in a far away Asian country fighting in a war. I was in California. He patrolled the jungles and climbed through the mud. I was mastering toddler walk. He fought for his life with a gun in his hands and wits about his head; his hunting skills being used to run point more times than not on his patrols. I fought asthma; my skill set not even mastering breathing.

What a brat I must’ve been all those years. Garnering attention for being sick, being praised for getting good grades, and having love heaped upon me by my grandparents- his parents. He struggled with demons that followed him back from Viet Nam.

Yet he never spoke but kind words to me. He helped me learn how to fish and run a boat. Later on, he played with my kids and doted on them when we came to visit.

I always wondered why he never seemed to be in step with the normal world. A loving wife, a family life, or even a regular job seemed to all escape him.

Our lives took entirely different paths. I got the easy one. He had the hard one allotted to him. I reaped the benefits of the godawful hell he went through. And he never said a word.

In fact I never heard him talk of any of it. Never did he complain or make me feel like I owed him something. It has only been in these later years that I knew anything of what he went through. And only a small part of it.  IMG_20180822_215201

Today I finally saw the photos of a young man in a far away place. I held the Bronze Star, awarded to him for his ordeals.

Luckily, I had been able to tell him how much I appreciated all he had done for me and my family before he passed. But I don’t think I ever had a clue as to how much that appreciating should’ve been.

Uncle Russ. Thank you again. I hope the rest you find meets what you deserve.

 

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Good Bye to the First

Hey Kids,

Roger Moore passed away the other day.rogermoore

I’m not one to make a big deal out of celebrities’ passing but it was Roger Moore who introduced me to the world of 007 and his licence to kill in the 1977 movie The Spy Who Loved Me.

Having seen the movie a hundred billion times as it repeated itself on HBO so many years ago, it’ll always be first movie I think of when I’m feeling shaken but not stirred.

Maybe not everyone’s favorite Bond, maybe not the absolute best of the series, but Roger Moore was my first Bond, James Bond. And he always will be.

 

Post 3-145

The Rewards of Being Neighborly

Hey Kids,

The wind blew today. It blew a little more later on. And then tonight it’s blowing still.

So we have opted to wait until tomorrow before we try to leave the slip.Instead we kayaked around the bay and more importantly, I caught some fish. Good fish too.

This evening, knowing that fishing was most likely off the menu, I walked the docks. I look at other boats and evaluate what I like and what I think I don’t, what color schemes look the best, and I wonder who the hell really has enough money to own some of the bigger nicer boats.

I also took the opportunity to introduce myself to the owners of a boat on the dock opposite from us. We’ve seen them a couple of times since we’ve been coming down here and have waved as we paddled by in our kayaks.

It turns out that the pair of guys that were sitting on the back deck of the boat are avid striper fishermen.

howie

A Howard Special- as featured on a popular Lake Powell website

And the one gentlemen is a pro lure maker; he gave me few to try out. I learned invaluable information and now can’t wait to get back out fishing. Once the wind stops blowing.

Sometimes it pays to reach out a hand and say hi. You never know who you might meet. And what they might know about fishing.

 

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Straight Down

Hey Kids,

In a meeting with a staff member today, this quote on diplomacy came up in conversation. Although I misquoted it and wrongly attributed it to Henry Kissinger, it’s still a good quote.

Winston Churchill

I should’ve known it was the great Winston Churchill and better than I remember. 

“Diplomacy is the art of telling people to go to hell in such a way that they ask for directions.” -Winston Churchill

 

Post 3-070

Kind Words

Hey Kids,

Today is a day to celebrate.

Not just because we were accepted into an ownership of a houseboat.

Not just because said houseboat is located on Lake Powell.boatonpowell

Not just because we will be on that houseboat on Lake Powell for hopefully years to come.

But because we have enough friends who are willing to say good things on our behalf to help us get it.

Now to learn how to pilot a houseboat.

 

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