This past week I was very conscious of the Lord's hand being on all that occurred. It was a week of wonderful visits, good roads, safe drives, excellent spring weather and accomplishing many errands for my parents.
I have learned the secret for me for doing long distance drives: pack everything possible the night before, wake up early and get on the road immediately after breakfast! The day I left I was backing out of our parking lot at 6:30am and yesterday coming home I was on Glenmore Trail in Calgary shortly after 6am. Getting on the road a few hours ahead of the hottest hours of the day and just prior to rush hours makes me feel like I am really getting away with something and pumps the adrenalin necessary for the trip. Stopping every 2 or 3 hours, even just for 5 minutes and getting out of the car is very helpful. So, I have discovered that I can drive for 8 or 9 consecutive hours when I need to. It was actually easier to stay awake being alone in the car because I could sing and talk and "preach" the entire time and disturb no one. I quite enjoyed it all.
Mom and Dad are doing far better than I dared to hope. Mom of course wore herself out with excitement that I was coming and came down with a cold the morning I left. Hopefully it won't make the descent into her lungs this time. I am finding that she becomes ill right around my visits this past few years. She can't sleep for many nights in advance and she worries about how things are going to go for Dad with the added stress of a visitor. Fortunately she felt fine for our visit. Dad was able to use his walker to come along on all the errands and we drove literally all over the city shopping, going to doctors' appointments and having a couple of meals in restaurants. The time flew by. Usually, once the first evening's visiting is over, dad retreats to his room with the tv and newspaper for a lot of the rest of the visiting time, but this time he was quite happy to sit in the living room and chat. It indicates he is feeling pretty well these days and was not stressed by my presence. In the first 3 days I was there I wore them completely out, I am sure, but no point in having a long list of hoped for errands and not accomplishing as many as possible. In the first 3 days every errand was completed and my parents were delivered to all their medical appointments. It was a most successful time on every front.
There were some good visits with friends as well: an old family friend came over one evening for tea and some of mom's fantastic ginger scones. I have known him all my life and he is very funny and very intelligent, well travelled and just a lot of fun to visit with. I had part of a day in our old "stomping grounds" of Olds/Didsbury to visit 2 friends I rarely get to see any more. Great visits with sides of home made French onion soup, Greek salads, hemp heart cake and amazing photos from one of my friend's recent trip to Japan. Her husband built a very authentic looking Torii gate in their back yard and she has Japanese carp flags hanging from it in good Boys Day fashion. It is very very nice. She sent me home with a large box of books to read and a lovely green summer jean jacket and very cool scarf to go with it. There are a lot of other colours in the scarf that match other clothes that I have all ready. What an unexpected blessing on top of all the other blessings of the week. The other friend and I nearly talked each others' ears off. It has been far too long since we have had a chance to really visit each other. Then I came home yesterday to an immediate dinner invitation that unfortunately I was too late (and beat) to go to, but how lovely to come home to a friend's invite.
Today I have a few aches and pains from sitting down for so long in the car, so it will be a day of taking a couple of long walks to "get the kinks out" I think. There are a few grocery items to purchase and some utility bills to pay at the bank. I am so happy our branch is open on Saturdays. I have a few programmes on tv that I recorded while I was away, so will take a look at those this evening. Tomorrow morning is church and I will see who remembers who I actually am when I am there without my husband. teehee There is a parishioner I need to see this week so that will be a lunch out.
We called my son when I was in Calgary and he is a happy camper these days. This weekend he is being flown to Toronto for jury for the RBC painting competition and is delighted to be able to work on that with an artist he greatly admires and respects. Then he will return to New York City for a few more weeks to wrap up his apprenticeship and pack up for home. He is coming here in mid June for a few days before flying on to Calgary to see his grandparents, before heading home to Vancouver. It has been a wonderful past year for him. Now he feels ready to make more plans for the future.
My husband is also thrilled beyond belief by his experiences in Tanzania and now southern England. His short texts say an awful lot about how happy he is for this amazing opportunity to interact with fellow priests of other nations and to see places he has never seen before. He comes home in less than a week now and I can't wait to hear about his adventures first hand.
Well, breakfast calls. Then it will be time to eat breakfast and get on the road to the bank. "Walkies" this afternoon and then an evening to rest...I hope. Have a wonderful weekend everyone!