mardi, juillet 31, 2007

Since my last post here I’ve mostly worked. I had been called out to work on Sunday. I worked as Top then. I did get my day off Monday but I was called out to work on Tuesday and Wednesday. On those days I worked as an outside operator on our newest unit (a clean fuels unit), which is the unit from hell (UFH). Thursday I started my regular shift as Top operator. The UFH did not let up and I worked with the outside guy on the unit.

Friday, I took off so Morgan and I could drive to Pensacola to meet Christian. I was hoping to get Christian and bring him home for the weekend, so he could get his truck and bring it back to Florida. He was not able to come home so we brought him a load of civilian cloths.

Morgan and I left our house at 5:30 AM. She slept the first couple of hours of the trip and I listened to David McCullough’s book 1776. I checked it out from the library for the long drive. So far I have not yet finished it, but I am very close to doing so, and it is very good.

Christian had requested that we bring him some boudin and so I stopped in Breaux Bridge and picked up three pounds for him. Morgan woke up in Breaux Bridge. We had a very nice conversation that lasted for several hours. Then she turned to her I-pod for entertainment and I went back to McCollough’s book.

We arrived in Pensacola a little after 11 AM, and hoped we would hear from Christian soon, but it was three hour before he finished his day’s work and called us on the cell phone. Christian had some hope that he would be able to get off work earlier and that is why we got there when we did, but it did not happen.

We went of base picked Christian up and cruised around Pensacola. This was his first chance to get off base since he arrived there two weeks earlier. For supper, we tried to find and Outback Steakhouse, but settled for Ruby Tuesdays instead. We had a good visit, talked and broke bread together. Then we brought Christian back to base, said our goodbyes, he took his clothes and boudin back to his room and we left to return home. It was now 6 PM.

The drive home was uneventful. Morgan and I conversed for a while, then she again turned to here I-pod and I went back to 1776. We arrived at home at 11:30. I had to work the next morning so I immediately got ready for bed. Next morning I was up and moving at a quarter to 5.

The UFH was unrelenting all weekend so our work group did not have the quiet weekend that I had hoped for. We struggled with it both Saturday and Sunday. It lined out Sunday night. We had a normal busy Monday and I today (Tuesday) I am home.

Coram Deo,

mardi, juillet 24, 2007

Sunday morning I was planning on sleeping in (until at least 8 AM) then get up and go to worship service. Instead the phone rang at about 10 minutes to six; Patrick at work calling to let me know that I was scheduled to work and he was waiting on me so he could go home. I had managed to not notice that I was scheduled to work Sunday.

I jumped up, got ready and managed to get to work in less than thirty minutes. I managed to get work before I was officially late, but Patrick was about 20 minutes late heading for home. This was a rare event for me. I hate to be late and don’t like waiting for people who make being late a habit.

Sunday evening MK and his son came over to visit. He had a Robert Mondavi 2001 La Famiglia Barbera and it is a great wine.

Monday, Lisa and our daughter went wedding dress and photographer shopping. The boys and I stayed around the house. Monday evening, Toney B. invited Mark D. and me over for hotdogs, beer and conversation on his back patio. We ate and visited for a couple of hours and had a good time.

Today, I’m at work. It was my day off, but the phone rang about 5:30 this morning. Someone called in sick, so here I am today. Now I have to go outside and make around in the unit.


vendredi, juillet 20, 2007

On Wednesday afternoon, July 12, Lisa, the boys and I drove to Houston and got a hotel room near Bush International Airport. After we checked into the hotel we headed for a nearby theatre to watch the new Harry Potter movie, which I found to be very good.

Next morning, we slept in a bit, had a continental breakfast at the hotel and then caught the shuttle for the airport. This was the boys first time to fly and they were pretty excited about the approaching adventure.

They found the take off to be pretty exciting, and liked the climb through the clouds. The rest of the trip to Chicago they spent playing video games or drawing. On the plane I read a book and Lisa spoke with a lady from Chicago.

The boys were not near as impressed with the landing in Chicago as they had been with the take off from Houston. After finding our way through the airport, we picked up our Hertz rent-a-car and headed to the Ramada in Waukegan. The traffic moved at a snail’s pace for much of the way.

I had picked this hotel because it had a special rate for folks coming to the Navy graduation ceremonies and because it had an indoor pool. This feature was important for the boys, so that they would have something to do when we were at the hotel.

Friday morning we got an early start, and headed to Great Lakes Naval Training Center at about 6:15 AM. We were allowed onto base but had to endure a serious vehicle inspection by the powers that be. We had to exit the vehicle open the hood, trunk and all four doors. They checked all the vehicles visually and with dogs trained to detect drugs and explosives.

After this we parked the car and walked to a large hall where the graduation took take place. We were instructed to get there early and we did. We had 1 1/2 to 2 ours to wait before the ceremony began. The boys were bored, but they sat there and endured the wait.

The ceremony was as I remembered it from when I graduated from Navy boot camp 29 years earlier. Lisa and the boys saw Christian marching when his division past in front of the reviewing stands where we were. I was taking pictures of them, hoping to catch him in some of them, which I did.

After the ceremony Christian headed straight for his mom and gave her a big hug. After all the hugs we talked and headed to the car. Christian said the first thing he wanted was to go to the hotel and take a long shower without a whole platoon of guys showering at the same time.

After his shower we drove to Lake Michigan, so that we could all see it first hand. Christian used much of the car time to contact his friends with Lisa’s cell phone. The only other item that he wanted for the day was to eat a steak at Outback. So that is what we did next. Then it was time to return him to base.

Next day, I went and picked him up so Lisa and the boys could sleep. I got Christian and we headed back to the hotel to pick up Lisa and the boys. We then drove into Chicago and went to Navy Pier. We spent most of the day there.

Christian had to return to base early to stand a watch. After we dropped him at the base we returned to the hotel and the boys and I went swimming.

Sunday morning at 6:30 AM we left the Ramada headed for O’Hare to catch our flight back to Houston. We arrived back at home at 5:PM. Christian flew to Pensacola on Sunday also.

Coram Deo,

mardi, juillet 10, 2007

This morning, while Lisa got herself ready for work, I went out on the porch with a hot cup, my Bible and another book. It’s nice to sit out there, enjoy a nice cup of coffee and read while a mocking bird is singing in a tree near by.

I had to come inside for a moment, so I decided to write this blog note. Now I am going to refill my cup and return to the porch for about 30 more minutes of reading.

Coram Deo,

lundi, juillet 02, 2007

Sunday morning after breakfast Lisa and I went out on the porch. I read St. Paul’s epistle to the Ephesians aloud. Lisa was not feeling well, so she stayed home from church. The boys and worshipped at Bethel.

We picked up chicken on the way home. The early afternoon was quiet and Lisa began feeling better.

Our nephew Sean, who is in the Air Force and has been in Okinawa for a year, is back in the states for a little while. Lisa fixed a wonderful supper for him and other family members. We had great food and a good family visit. (The picture is of Sean and his older brother - a former Marine - Eric)

Coram Deo,

Note: Pastor Mark came over to visit around 3:30. He informed me that he had resigned the pastorate at Covenant and the congregation had accepted his resignation. This is a terrible blow. Pastor Mark is a gifted preacher, teacher and pastor and though I’m not a member of Covenant I was very disturbed and disappointed by the news.

I’m not privy to all the details as to why this occurred, but I have some knowledge my gut tells me that all parties acted too hastily.