Weekly Roundup – Autumn Equinox Edition

This And That
This And That

Another winter passed, another spring ahead. There’s still snow on the ground and a warning of another snowstorm yet to come. But the birds are returning, the sun feels warmer, and there’s a promise of more warm weather ahead. I think I speak for many people in posting “not a day too soon!”

This has been a crazy couple of weeks here in the Charest household, Virginia edition. I was on another business trip last week to sunny San Diego, California. Nice enough, and there’s worse places to be than San Diego in early March.

However, this time I caught what I am now calling the “California Crud,” a flu so vile I’m still trying to shake it almost two weeks later. I felt happy that I was well enough to travel home on Saturday morning, as shaky as I still was. That flu was compounded by bad news about Mom last Friday.

As I was trying to fight off my flu and do some productive work on a business trip, I received a call from one of Mom’s friends early last Friday morning that Mom had had taken a fall. Not too bad as falls go, but any fall is bad for someone Mom’s age. I learned she was in the hospital for observation and short-term recovery.

So Saturday I flew home and met Winnie at the airport, whereupon we drove directly to Mom’s place in southern New York state (“upstate New York” for you out-of-towners). We arrived about 10:30 PM after a six and a half hour drive, not bad by the usual standards of driving to Mom’s house. It was too late for visiting hours by the time we arrived so we crashed at Mom’s house and went to the hospital the next morning. I have to admit, being in Mom’s house overnight without Mom there was an eerie feeling.

We did get to see Mom Sunday morning for several hours, and I had a chance to talk with the nurse and such. Mom was in good spirits for being laid up in a hospital bed but she did look a bit battered from the fall. Some friends came by while we were there so Mom did have enough company around her. Too soon, Winnie and I had to head back for home. We had another six and a half hour drive home and got back at a decent hour. Just in time to catch a late winter snowstorm.

Yes, by the time we hit northern Maryland, it was in fact snowing nicely. By the time we arrived home the snow was already beginning to accumulate, and I started anticipating another snow day Monday.

Sure enough, I got up early Monday morning, looked outside to see about four inches of powder and snow still coming down hard, then checked the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) Government office status. Everything was closed on account of inclement weather so I went back to bed for a couple of hours.

I ended up working from home a few hours that day but mostly rested. Winnie was home also, so we had a pleasant and quiet day together. It stopped snowing late morning and by afternoon the roads and walks were already melting clear. Tuesday all Government offices were opened, but I still felt pretty sick and tired so I called in another “work from home” sick day.

Meanwhile, Mom was still in the hospital. I’d been communicating the news with my brother and sister, and keeping the rest of the family informed via Facebook (yes really, that’s how we communicate with each other). By Tuesday Mom was released to a convalescent center, only no one at the hospital told family or friends where Mom was being sent to. Mom herself was a bit vague on her whereabouts, part of the reason she was sent to a convalescent center instead of directly home. So for two days none of her family or friends knew where she was, which was disconcerting. (it’s 10 PM, do you know where your parents are?).

My sister arrived in Mom’s area this morning after a day and a half drive from Tennessee with one of her daughters, and was in fact able to locate Mom. Crisis averted.  For now.

Today it was sunny with temps in the mid 60’s, I’m mostly over my cold, and Mom has been located with family on the ground taking care of stuff for her. It’s a good way to end the week.

More to follow.

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