lundi, mars 26, 2007

(Continued from 24 March)

Benny B. and I went into Philadelphia. Our goal was to tour a few museums. We visited the Art Museum and the Natural History Museum. Then we walked toward the older part of town. We stopped in at an Irish pub for a Guinness and Philly cheese steak after that we returned to the hotel.

Monday six of us took off early for New York. We visited the Statute of Liberty and then went on to China Town in search of knock off, brand name purses. My wife had heard about the purses that some folks brought back last year and she informed me that she wanted one also. It was certainly an adventure but would take too long to type out.

I did buy two back ally purses, one for the wife and one for our daughter. Most of the other guys had been given the same orders that I was given, so between the six of us we had between 12 to 16 purses.

The rest of the week was spent on very solid rescue training. The folks training at S.T.A.R.T. Rescue Training are very good. I have been doing this for about 13 years and Kurt at S.T.A.R.T. is one of the best trainers I’ve had.

After our week of training we flew back to Lake Charles. The flights were uneventful and we arrived here about 8:30 pm.

On Sunday Steve Wright was ordained and installed as Pastor of Bethel Presbyterian Church. It is so good to have a pastor. It has been a long time coming.

Last Friday, Lisa and Elisabeth went to Austin, TX for marriage stuff. I had to work so Lisa made arrangements for the boys to stay with ReauxReaux. I picked them up after work on Friday and went to see The Spencers: Theatre of Illusion which is part of this year’s Banners Series. They were good and the boys were very impressed.

After work Saturday I went to another Banners event. Ryan Brasseaux gave a lecture on the evolution of Cajun Music. This was followed by a Lost Bayou Ramblers Concert. Both the lecture and music were excellent. My cousin Chris and his wife Mindy came for the concert. They would have liked the lecture but could not make it because of a schedule conflict.

Because Lisa was in Austin I did not get to dance much, but Mindy and I did jitterbug to a few songs. The concert had free beer, provided by Budweiser. They had a number of micro brews that I had never tried before then. Food was also provided. We all passed a good time.

Lisa made it home around 8:30 last night. I am working off days today, and will not return to work until Friday night (unless the call me to work some OT).

Coram Deo,

samedi, mars 24, 2007

Much has transpired since the last time I posted on the blog.

Sunday March 4th was my dad and grandfather’s birthday (they are 70 and 87 years old). My mother called the house as we were getting ready for church, she called to inform me that my uncle, Walter (Bunny) had pasted away early that morning. Uncle Bunny was married to my dad’s sister and they lived in the New Orleans’ area. Bunny and Betty had been married for fifty years.

I already had to leave for New Orleans that afternoon to attend the Louisiana AFL-CIO annual convention. After Church we came home and I finished packing and headed for Metairie. I checked into the hotel three hours later. I discovered that I had forgotten my dress close that I planned to where for my uncle’s funeral. My hotel was near the Lakeside Mall, so I went there (JC Penneys) and bought a new suit, shirt and tie for the funeral.

With that done, I went to my Aunt Betty’s home in Destrehan. My parents were already there as were my all four of Betty and Bunny’s four sons and their families. I had not seen most of them for many years. I offered my sincere condolences and visited with them for a few hours before I headed back to the hotel.

Mom and dad did not want to impose on Betty or any of my cousins so I invited them to stay with me in Metairie. They accepted the invitation and soon after came to the hotel. The three of us slept in the one king size bed. I slept like a rock.

Our union meeting was just down the road at the Steam Fitters’ union hall. The day was passed listening to state and local politicians giving speeches and union leaders speaking on various topics. By mid-afternoon we were finished for the day and I headed back to Destrehan and my Aunt Betty’s place. I again spent a few hours with family members and returned to my hotel as did my parents.

The next morning, I checked out of the hotel and went to the union meeting. We heard a few more politicians and covered more union business. After lunch I noticed I had a low tire and decided call it a day. I aired up the tire and headed to Destrehan. I did not want a flat tire while in Metairie, so I did not attend the rest of the afternoon meetings.

I again met my parents at Aunt Betty’s house, from there we went to visit Aunt Linda. Linda is something else. She’s 87 and the care taker of her son’s 81 year old mother-in-law. Linda is very much a character, she has a heart of gold, but can says what she thinks and is never concerned about sparing feelings. She also has a vocabulary that would put a sailor to shame, as did her mother (my great grandmother).

We visited with Aunt Linda for a while. She gave us rooms for the night, and then we left to attend the wake for my uncle. The wake was at St. Charles Catholic Church in Destrehan and the deacon who spoke did a wonderful job. He and my dad were old friends and they had worked together a Dupont when we lived in Destrehan.

A saw lots of people that I had not seen in decades and was introduced to kin folk that I had never meet before then. After the wake we went back to Aunt Betty’s for supper, friends and neighbours provided tons of food for the family. After supper mom, dad and me returned to Aunt Linda. We talked some more. He all had a hilarious time and a good long overdue visit.

Next morning we got up, dressed for the funeral and returned to St. Charles Borromeo Catholic Church in Destrehan. The funeral mass was very nice and again the Priest gave a very good homily/eulogy. Aunt Betty, her sons and their families all did ok during the funeral. They are a very close family. It is good that all the boys still live in the area.

When the funeral was concluded, I was in a hurry to get home to Lisa and the kids, so I did not bother to change and drove the three hours home in my suit.

I was only home for a couple of days (Thursday and Friday). Saturday morning I meet several members of our Rescue team at the airport at about 4:30. We were on our way to Philadelphia for our annual 40 hours rescue training. After arriving in Philly we rented a couple of minivans and checked into the Embassy Suites for the week. This was my first time to stay at Embassy Suites. It was nice. We all had our own room with a kitchenette and living room that were separate from the bedroom.

They had a free happy hour every evening, from 5:30 to 7:30 for hotel guests. We took advantage of this benefit, without anyone getting drunk or stupid. There was also a free breakfast that included a short order cook. They made great omelettes. I was surprised that this Northern hotel had grits, and (even more surprising) the grits were good. That was a major surprise, since most restaurant grits that I’ve eaten over the years have had the texture and taste of glue.

Sunday morning five of us worshipped at 10th Presbyterian Church. It was a good service. We were an ecumunically diverse group, one Presbyterian (me), two Baptists and two Roman Catholics. After worship service we headed back to the hotel to meet up with the rest of the crew. Six guys then headed out for Gettysburg. Benny and I decided to stay in and kick around in Philly. We had both been to Gettysburg during last trip to Philly. (To Be Continued…)

jeudi, mars 01, 2007

My days off this week have been filled with a variety of things. I am an instructor in a new ergonomics program at work titled “Safety in Motion” and I was assigned to teach an one hour session to part of the on coming shift (6:00 AM) on both Tuesday and Wednesday., so I spent two hours there (5:30-7:30) both days.

On Tuesday after finishing the course, I spent some time with Alvin, who is head of the Behaviour-Based Safety program at the refinery. After that I went to visit my grandfather, who will be 87 this coming Sunday. We had a good visit. He took me to his garden and picked me some carrots and also some oranges from one of his trees.

The afternoon was spent with home, some of it with Christian and then helping the little boys with their homework.

Today, I had to run an errand early and then I went to Longville to visit my folks. I visited with my mom, sister and dad. Dad and a friend of his, Mr. Coleman, were milling a couple of pine trees that they had taken down. They had not finished a cutting up quarter of the trees and already had about 150 2X4’s stacked up.

I returned home in time to pick the boys up at school. We came home and worked on homework. Tomorrow I have rescue team training at the refinery. It is getting late and I need to get cleaned up and go to bed.

Coram Deo,