Story 10Aug2022: Wednesday

The day started with my alarm getting me going at 6:15. It was a rushed morning as I had to be in the office at about 8ish. The morning status meetings are canceled, but the 5:05PM are longer and a bit more political now that there are fewer meetings and the project is approaching normal product support and the end of hyper care. So cereal and banana, liberal coffee, shower, dressed, and aboard Air Volvo with me arriving about 7:45.

Yes, escalation did happen, and we had to create messaging on one of the crises of the moment for leadership. Frustrating as the message did not prevent more escalations, leadership soon moved on to other issues, and we were clear for a while. All of this filled the early morning, but I could leave early to see Susie as the required alignment meeting on the escalating issues would be in the afternoon.

Air Volvo delivered me just about 10AM, and Susie was still eating breakfast. I waited thirty minutes for Susie to finish with me feeding Susie a few times. Jennifer, the nurse aide for today, also fed Susie a few times. Sometimes Susie can’t get the spoon and her hands to work. Mostly, she can do it, but once in a while, she can’t get the spoon to stay straight. Susie is using a special smaller spoon, and that helps. She can lift her own glass and drink her milk. Susie still chokes quickly, and all her food is blendered–she can drink liquids, but she has to go slow with small sips.

For our 32nd wedding anniversary, Linda and Barb Wild sent flowers.

After Susie finished breakfast, we called Susie’s mother on my iPhone using FaceTime. Leta was happy again to see Susie and today was a long call as I decided not to rush today and spend more time at hummingbird house. Next, we called Linda and Barb Wild to thank them for the flowers. Jessy, Linda’s boyfriend, was there making lunch. Linda had decided to work from home at Mom’s house in East Lansing, Michigan. They were thrilled to connect with us at hummingbird house from Chateau Wild East, as I used to call the house in East Landing. We chatted with the Easterner for a while, and they showed us a view of Jessy’s handiwork. It looked good.

It was 11ish, and I had to return to the shoe company and had an alignment meeting at 1PM on the escalating issue I could not be late for. So I was off with a kiss; Susie was visibly sad to have me leave. It can be heartbreaking.

I stopped by Carl’s Jr. and had a Western Burger for lunch; I love their stuff, but I try to have one only once a month. Then, I parked the car and ate it listening to public radio, OPB (Oregon Public Broadcasting–the same broadcast for all of Oregon and parts of Washington. Unlike Michigan, for example, we have the same broadcast for radio and TV).

I soon returned in Air Volvo to the Clubhouse office building. The afternoon was filled with emotions as nobody liked to be recipients of an escalation. Nevertheless, we aligned and started to execute a plan that would show progress for leadership. The de-escalation was moving forward, as we call these.

We worked on the plan, and the emotions cooled; this is not my first escalation. “Smile and wave” was my suggestion to anyone feeling unhappy. It worked.

I left the shoe company at 4ish and was online at 5:05 for the hour-long, slightly political status meeting. Our issue was the last one to be reviewed, and by then, all the politics were already burned out, and everyone just wanted the meeting over. Perfect. Sorry, the details can not be recorded here.

Before the meeting, I printed all my paycheck stubs for the last few months after downloading them and emailing a PDF of each. More information to arrange for my meeting with the CPA next week. CPAs love paper.

While the meeting was going on, I reheated my Thai food leftovers eating wonton soup and Pud Thai. It was still excellent. I then rushed out and headed to First United Methodist Church, Beaverton. I was just a few minutes late.

Zophia, Dondrea’s girl, was there while Dondrea and the others did choir practice which is more like a Christian Rock rehearsal. I promised some board games for Zophia. We started with the Forbidden Island. This is a cooperative game; you work together, and the game is a lighter version of the same mechanics in the game Pandemic. This means the game starts off simple and without stress. Soon the game accelerates the collapse of the simulated island, and your team is rushing to finish before you lose a part of the island you need to succeed. Zophia liked it, and we played twice and won on the easy setting.

You can make out that we are escaping with not much Island left, each recovering two artifacts. I recommend this game to anyone who wants a fast cooperative game that requires some planning and tactics to win.

We tried Kill Doctor Lucky next, which did not play well for two players. I managed to kill the Doctor twice. I will have to bring a better two-person game as we never got passed two turns. I have a metal special edition Doctor Lucky figure, 28mm scale (Dungeons and Dragon sized), and brought painted figures to play instead of boring wooden pawns. So it looked good.

Zophia and I played chess next. I brought the silicone chess set (!), and we thought we would try a different version of chess where you take turns throwing pawns at the other person’s king. Whoever knocks the king over first wins. Zophia managed to win a lot. The chess pieces are indestructible and bounce a bit.

We played a more classic game of chess–no more throwing pieces, and Zophia showed she knew the game well and was able to build some good pawn structure, but moved the queen too much and was soon underdeveloped. The exchange of a knight for a bishop was good for me (usually, a bishop is ranked slightly higher than a knight). I exchanged my pawns in the middle and cleared a file to her king with my queen and rooks, after a castle, focused on her king. With Zophia underdeveloped and me pushing her queen around a bit to the side, she could not castle out of the easy trap, and I soon had her checkmated. It was not a bad game for someone her age–I had to work for it. I suspect she will get much better, and I will not win in the early mid-game.

After that, Zophia helped me load the games in the car, and Air Volvo headed home. I read a bit and went to sleep a bit early. My work week was over, and while I dreamed of work, I would not be back until two Mondays.

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