Saturday, July 02, 2005

A true vacation

I write this from the Hotel Savoy in downtown Kansas City as we prepare to head to the Florida Gulf coast for what I think will be our first real vacation since chemo started. We'll fly in to Fort Walton Beach where (hopefully) we'll be met by some member or members of my family for the drive to Seagrove, which is about the halfway point between Destin and Panama City Beach. We'll stay for a week doing absolutely nothing constructive, just slumming about in our bathing suits all day, trekking back and forth from the (rented) family compound to the beach.

Sarah and I look forward to spending time (further) corrupting our 4-year old niece, starting with a new book: Walter the Farting Dog. By the way, for those of you who don't know, the official motto of Sarah's family is "Fartus humeratus est [sic]". I heartily agree and have agreed since probably 1st grade - farts are hilarious! Not sure what my sister will think of our attempt to teach her daughter new and exciting vocabulary words (like flatulence), but I think she'll probably be too preoccupied by this latest round of shark attacks to care or notice. Our 9-month old nephew is mobile now, so I imagine we'll all be quite busy keeping tabs on the kids during the week.

Our ridiculous schedule kicks back into high gear as soon as we return. Vacation Bible School at Sarah's church starts the Monday after we get back, but before that on Sunday at church there is a baptism, a send off of the mission team and communion (the things Sarah thinks can be acomplished in an hour....), then the aforesaid high school students head out on their mission trip to North Carolina the following week. Meanwhile, I'll be busy at work churning out investment reports for the second quarter of 2005 (I worked about 5 hours on Thursday to build up my work "chops" a bit). We head to Indianapolis shortly thereafter for a follow-up visit with Dr. Foster and Dr. Einhorn at IU. Then, my brother is planning to come for a visit the next week.

By the way, I think I may have mentioned that IU wasted no time before sending out a bill for my RPLND. It was about $12K, which I thought was quite the bargain, so I wasn't really surprised to get a bill today from Dr. Foster for an additional $12K for his services. Again, I'd have to say it was money well spent, but thank goodness for insurance. On a curious note, the renewal for my medical insurance came in and only went up about 15% or so (which is about par for the course these days), so I was quite pleased (not to mention relieved).

Let me put in a plug for those of you who may be traveling to KC and recommend the Hotel Savoy. It's a stately old hotel that has been in continuous operation since the 1880s and has now been converted to a bed and breakfast. We've stayed here several times over the past 7 years and they are continuing to upgrade the digs (desparately needed upgrades, I might add). It's quite the bargain: for under $100 you get a king-size bed with lovely antique bath fixtures (the claw foot tubs are cool, but the individual hot and cold spigots in the lavatory take some getting used to) and a killer breakfast that should last you until at least supper time, if not later. You have your choice of a couple dozen items, from eggs benedict to lobster bisque to lamb chops to veal scallopine to Oysters Rockefeller to Coquille Saint Jacques (a scallops dish). It's not an either/or menu - you can order as much as you think you can stomach. The hotel also houses the Savoy Grill, a fabulous steak house that dates back to 1903. (They also now have wireless internet access, as I can attest.)

Meanwhile, we're off to celebrate Sarah's birthday, Spanish style -- with tapas! We'll check back in with a report from IU in a few weeks. Take care!