Story 16Jan2022: Saturday

Saturday started with me starting late after 8ish. I was tired in the morning and got going very slow. The blog was also a bit long, making it a rushed morning.

I read the usual email, New York Times new summary, and coffee. Evan called in the morning, and we agreed to him being here about 10:30ish and then heading to see Susie.

I managed all the usual morning stuff and did not have fatigue.

Evan showed, and we took Air Volvo on the foggy Saturday to Forest Grove.

We passed the rituals with Evan, worried as he just had his vaccination for his third dose and is feeling a bit rough, but no fever.

Susie was still in her PJs and was asleep, and it took a moment for her to wake. Evan got a big smile from Susie. Susie was still sleepy and fell back to sleep a few times. We did a short FaceTime for Leta with Susie, and she was able to get a few words out.

I learned from the nurse Sarah that Susie is now officially in hospice care managed by Bristol Hospice. There are some medication changes, primarily for comfort for distress. In addition, a coughing med is being put forward as part of hospice as Susie is coughing more.

Evan and I then headed out to the Grand Lodge for lunch; Evan had never been there before. In this new Covid-19 and impossible to hire people world that is 2022, the service was friendly but slow. I had my first pizza, Compass (in memory of the Mason’s who built the building around the start of the previous century), since my surgery. Evan had the tuna appetizer and an Irish Coffee (still trying to feel better from his vaccine). Both were good.

While there, I got a call from Bristol Hospice; a hospice nurse had physically visited Susie and was reporting to me. A new experience. She had helped get Susie cleaned up (Susie was agitated, and I had asked the nurses to help her as we left). The hospice nurse told me that she saw Susie, detected the issue, and helped resolve it. She found Susie could answer questions and that she was still lucid. The hospice nurse also pointed out that Susie is tiny and can move, so working with her was easy.

Evan and I return to Susie, and we wake her again. We chat a bit and then do some music videos with her. Evan learns YMCA arm movements, and we do those to the song. Susie just moves her hands a bit but enjoys the action.

I have trouble leaving, but it is time to let Susie sleep. She started to fall asleep during the music.

Note: Susie’s roommate, Pat, gets out of bed every ten minutes and is a hazard. The nurses rush in multiple times to help Pat, who clearly does not know she was up a few minutes ago.

Evan and I return to the Volvo Cave without issue and pick up a few games. I bravely take 18 Chesapeake board game with me. This is a train 18xx game, an entry-level one. I am trying to learn the 18xx games, and we spend an unproductive afternoon trying to understand the board game.

We head to The 649, and the bartender asks me how Susie is doing. They remember Susie as they do not get too many customers using a walker during a pandemic. The 649 has stringent adherence to masking, requiring only N95 masks, no cloth, or simple paper masks.

We went right to drinks (having had lunch); Evan had another stellar mixed cocktail while I had a small beer.

Turning to gaming, I could not make the Operational Turn of the board game work. I was confused by the directions in the manual. However, we had managed to get the stock market running, and IPO’d (“floating” in the game’s terms) a few companies. Yes, this game simulates a stock market and includes takeovers and company funding. The game ends when someone goes broke, or the bank is busted (it only has $8000 total–a lot back in the early-mid 1800s).

You win the game with the most money adding in the value of stock valuation from the market (not par value but market price).

After the second turn, we abandoned the game as I knew I was missing some vital steps. Unfortunately, learning board games, especially a new type (18xx), often take a few failed attempts. I later watched a short video and discovered my mistake as I ran the Operational turn in 18 Chesapeake multiple times until the player passed convoluting the Stock Market and Operational processes. Actually, the correct process is to run just once for each company. It is not by a turn player but by a floated company. The order of play is the highest stock price to lowest. Next time, I think I have it now. I also need to bring poker chips as the paper money does not work.

Note: You may break bills using spare currency, but no new money enters the game. The players have to be careful to break bills and pay the bank and themselves without entering any new cash into the pool of money. Many games need a very close adherence to the process. The 18xx, being railroads, need the players to follow strict procedures.

I paid the bill at The 649 as Evan was fading fast and the new game had nearly exploded his head. So far, he has assigned 18 Chesapeake with The Hotel Austria as a too complex game to be enjoyed. Maybe next time he will like it better. The stock market is very interesting.

Dondrea sent a hot dish of baked spaghetti with meat sauce; it was an old-school version and wonderful. Evan left before dinner, still suffering from vaccine side effects. After baking it, Corwin and I enjoyed the dish, and the remains are now chilling in the frig. Like most hot dishes, it will even be better when reheated.

Corwin and watched the last episode of The Expanse. The show was successful in ending the show with a mix of story finishing special effects for spaceship battles and political compromises (including a political trick) that are the meat of the show. I am sad to see the eight-year adventure end, but the storyline is complete. The original books stop in about the same place and then skip 30 years into the future. Thus, an excellent place to end.

My mail has been busy. I received an electric blanket from my Aunt Kathy and Uncle Martin (my mother’s brother). On Susie’s side, Annika Hill Weis and her family sent a box of chicken soup and other goodies. I ordered hand cream from Amazon, recommended strongly for my chemotherapy, and was mailed in a plastic mailer. The stuff leaked out and filled the bag with hand cream. This has happened before, and you need to be careful with Amazon, and they just throw anything in a mailer and let it break or spill. I got a full refund. I ordered the same stuff from Walmart in plastic tubes.

I went to bed early as I had no naps on Saturday. I read for a bit and found myself sleeping instead of reading. I did wake in the night, but I did get some good rest.

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