Thursday, September 11, 2008

you know you're in over your head when...

1. you actively daydream about escapist endeavors abroad
2. you seriously contemplate what you would do if someone offered you a one-way ticket home
3. you neglect to blog for fear it might stimulate a degree of introspection

so. the past few weeks have been - we're all friends here - hellish for me. but let me back up a few paces: fond du lac, wi, and it's residents - a dream. individuals on the disaster team - stellar. disaster recovery work - rewarding. as if by magic, "the team" (a.k.a. the collective soul that emerges from the 9 outstanding individuals on disaster with me) + me (as stand-in team leader) + organizing work = a nightmare. i'd be hard-pressed to think of a month during which i've cried - or wanted to cry - more. now that is out, let's discuss happier things in my life.

like the fact that i live at the fond du lac fairgrounds. that's right. every night i bed down in a building adjacent to the cow palace. cow palace, you ask? it's an industrial-sized barn-ish building that houses several arcade games and a giant flat screen tv. on warm nights, i drag my sleeping bag outside and soak up the starry sky and scent of early autumn.

but that's only the start of fond du lac's magic. this city of approximately 45,000 has a beautiful library, an amazing mom-and-pop restaurant i discovered while lost on a walk and in dire need of a restroom and sustenance, and multiple invitations to speak (and eat) with local volunteer groups.

additionally, it turns out that teammate alyssa is an avid "speed solitaire" player. to cannons, this is more affectionately known as nerts. we've turned a few other teammates on to this game, resulting in some heated competitions.

i could go on about michigander-driven karaoke renditions of the wreck of the edmund fitzgerald, proximity to oshkosh bi-gosh!, and other bits of goodness. but i think i'll settle on rosemary.

i met rosemary on monday while doing mold remediation in her basement. she is a widow, mother of ten, and a once-avid cyclist who has biked across most of europe. she actually demanded that our team take a mandatory cookies-and-milk break. what's not to love? i thoroughly enjoyed hearing her stories about meeting her husband, card-playing with the ladies once a month, and biking across denmark. when we parted ways she apologized that we hadn't met under better circumstances and made us promise that if we were ever in fond du lac again, we'd give her a ring for cookies and a chat.

my time is up on the computer. so i'll have to save my tales of tall bikes, choppers, and jenna's hospitable family for another time.

much much love to all.


LizzyLou said...

sending much much love back at ya. you can bet i'll be there (in spirit) to celebrate with you when the nightmarish parts are over. in the meantime, i'm thankful for the rosemarys and nertz games and lacs of cheese fondue bake (that's what the name always makes me think of, at least.) to tide you over. love ya.

nertzfan said...

Hi, I found your blog post through a search for “Nerts”. It is cool to see others that know about the game. I hope you don’t mind but I wanted to let you know about, the site for the National Nertz Association. There is a bunch of interesting Nertz information there and you can also find out how to play Nertz online there. I hope you will check it out. Feel free to join and also let your friends and family know. Thanks

a.k.a. Suga Jones said...

We could sneak over the border to Canada, get fake passports under the aliases (alii) Christine Sparks and Josie Dangelo, then hijack a plane to iceland and form a new band with Bjork. Whattdya say?

johnny said...

i'm down as long as we can bring lacs of cheese fondue bake...