Tuesday was a good day. I did my knee exercises and my shoulder exercises, then I played some piano and sang and then headed for Radford for my office hours. I filled out my spring preference sheet and asked for a three course load again. I hope Rosemary can accommodate me. I taught class and it went very well, especially the discussion of the poems by Rita Dove and Li Young Lee. After class I napped then I drove to Tech to ride my bike for 40 minutes inside the Perry St. garage since it was rainy outside. I drove home, picked up a chicken at Food Lion, then came home and did some more shoulder exercises and watched some of the basketball playoffs and then an episode of Krypton.
Monday, April 23, 2018
Monday was a decent day even though I had a lot to do (it’s 10:30 and I still have my stationary biking to do and some more shoulder exercises). I got up early and did my knee exercises, did some cleaning around the house, and played the piano and sang for almost 40 minutes. Then I headed for Walmart to order my glasses. They were more expensive than I expected ($250) but they will be the lens without lines, exactly like the ones I had. I am using my frame so they should fit perfectly. I may later get another pair of sunglasses and that may cost $350. I did some work in my office, consulted with Kim Vest about my problem student, taught an okay class because no one did the reading, then headed home to nap and then get up to do more shoulder exercises and take a 20 minute walk in the hallway.
Sunday, April 22, 2018
A great Saturday. I did my knee exercises and then some of my shoulder exercises. Then I washed the dishes and cleaned around the house. I finished my schoolwork, and sang the songs for tomorrow. Then I decided to head off for a travel day. I drove out Craig Creek, fishing at two spots and getting one fish at my favorite spot. Then I kept going and ended up driving along 311 to New Castle then I kept going and went over Potts Mountain (I could see the Blue Ridge from the top) and on to paint bank. There I took a nap, then drove along Potts Creek and fished it at one spot where it open to fishing. I drove on to Big Stony and stopped to ride my bike up to Glen Alton for 40 minutes, then I headed back home to watch a few episodes of Game of Thrones before bed.
Sunday was also very good. I did my knee exercises, showered and headed off to sing at St. Mary’s. I sang okay and I felt good singing again. I then went for a walk with Rob, then headed off to fish at Eggleston. I saw lots of wildflowers, common and star chickweed, purple dead nettle, violets of white, yellow, and bluish, spring beauties, field mustard, ragwort, cut leaved toothwort, ground ivy, coltsfoot, redbuds, and several others. I fished at Eggleston without a hit (the river was a couple of feet high) and then I fished on Big Rock road, then headed back to Tech for a 40 minute bike trip, half outside and half inside. Then it was time to head home to watch the end of the Bucks / Celtics game then the end of the Raptors and Washington game and now I am doing my shoulder exercises and watching the Cleveland game.
Thursday, April 19, 2018
The last journal I posted really affected me. It increased my feeling of isolation (though I am in the process of rejoining the choir at St. Mary’s) and led to a day where I had to take two 2 and ½ mg of Valium. Later that Monday, I went to the Tech Virtual Reality Studio and I decided to look at the hollow and see what was happening. There were vehicles there and it made me very sad to see it. Something that did help was to write down most of my accomplishments, and there are many so that made me feel better. My main concerns are getting old and being sick for sixteen months with lupus. After that is my skepticism about God’s existence and about the Resurrection of Jesus. Presently with my shoulder injury I am feeling even more trapped. I don’t know if the injury happened from the fall in church or from something else, but the cortisone shot I got on Tuesday, hasn’t helped as much as I had hoped. It isn’t really painful but I can feel that it isn’t right and I don’t know how long it will take to recover or if I will need an operation. I find my memory seems even worse, perhaps because of the stress of the recent cataract operations on each eye, the three IVs, the two blood tests, the strain of the semester coming to an end, the mix-up at the choir, the Coleman contest. During the two weeks I was away from the choir I did go to the Episcopal mass and the first service where the priest talked about doubt and how we all have it was somewhat comforting to me. I did have a quick chat with Dave yesterday (he won a big case that may bring him a couple hundred thousand dollars) and that cheered me up some. Later I spoke with Mary Gorton and she is doing fine. I had a nice lunch with Claire Hall yesterday and she was upset about her three days of non-paying babysitting. Luke’s brother and wife didn’t even give her 20 dollars for gas and that really bothered her besides the fact that the kids were hard to deal with (I gave her all I had in my wallet, which was a little less than 20, and she really appreciated that).
Sunday, April 15, 2018
I woke up Sunday at about 6 and I began reading a selection from Scott Momaday’s The Way to Rainy Mountain, a part I have read before. It brought me back to the Ouachita Mountains in Arkansas and Oklahoma, and the Talimena Scenic Drive which I rode along and hiked from several times on my way to San Antonio from Virginia. I also remembered dipping into the icy tailwaters coming from the dam on Broken Bow lake. It was bittersweet because in my present state, fighting refractory kidney lupus and several other health problems, I don’t think I will ever return. That sadness deepened when I read a passage that I have quoted several times in my writing career: “Once in his life a man ought to concentrate his mind upon the remembered earth, I believe. He ought to give himself up to a particular landscape in his experience, to look at it from as many angles as he can, to wonder about it, to dwell upon it. He ought to imagine that he touches it with his hands at every season and listens to the sounds that are made upon it. He ought to imagine the creatures there and all the faintest motions of the wind. He ought to recollect the glare of noon and all the colors of the dawn and dusk.” Like many, I have cherished places, Yellowstone, which Momaday calls “the top of the world, a region of deep lakes and dark timber, canyons and waterfalls. But, beautiful as it is, one might have the sense of confinement there,” the Canadian Rockies, The Brooks Range, Big Bend National Park, to name a few. But only two places have ever held me in a way that Momaday speaks about. Both were homes to me for many years, the first being the Neversink Gorge, which I hiked and fished for many years and published a book about titled The Legendary Neversink, and Reese Hollow, where I lived for over twenty years, wrote heavily about and eventually put in a forever-wild conservation easement.
This may be the start of a book based on my blog experience, started when my ex-wife Tracy left me after spending fifteen years together, and living in Reese Hollow for almost a decade.
Saturday, April 14, 2018
Saturday was a productive day but not a very good fishing one. I did my knee exercises, cleaned the stove top, did a laundry, swept the kitchen floor, did the recycling and threw out the garbage, vacuumed all the carpets and the bathroom tile, practiced some piano, then took a brief nap. Then it was time to head off to fish. I decided to drive out to Narrows for a change and Wolf Creek, even at my favorite bridge there, was not productive, not even a hit. I then took a nap at the turnoff for Big Stony, but quickly changed my mind and headed for the Cascades where I had a lovely walk of about a mile. You could see all of the stream because none of the leaves were out on the trees and bushes and I was very striking. I had to walk carefully but I stopped often for the views. Then I drove home for a nap and then a 40 minute bike ride over at Hethwood. I am glad I was able to accomplish both things. I was a little surprised that Wolf didn’t work out but that is fishing. Maddie sent me two poems and they are very, very good.
Friday, April 13, 2018
Friday turned out to be a pretty relaxed day. I did part of my knee exercises early on and then I headed to Dick’s to get my reel filled with new 4 pound test line. I then went to Walmart to get my prograf, which was completely out. Then it was time to head out toward Walker Creek, where I fished at a spot just off route 100 with no luck, then at the bridge at White Gate, again no luck, and then 8 fish, including a couple of decent bass, at Trail’s edge. I fished a new spot and it was terrific fishing. I drove back, took a nap then headed to Heather and parked near my old apartment and rode my bike for 40 minutes. It was a lovely evening and then I headed back home. I did my letter to the Pope but I think I will send it to the bishop instead. I did a little reading but this past week wiped me out. Maddie did respond to my poem, calling it beautiful but she suggested it might work better as a prose poem. It was a pretty lazy day but I hope tomorrow will be a little more energetic.