The shiner is fading

Visited with Sam for an hour yesterday. His black eye is healing although there’s a visible rim of bruising along the bottom edge, following his cheekbone. He was in good spirits even though he’d just woken up from his afternoon nap. We couldn’t decide if his speech was a bit slurry because he’d just woken up or because he’d had a beer (!) with lunch. (He didn’t want his sister to know that he still had access to alcohol, even though he doesn’t drink that much – anymore! – and even tried to change the subject on me when I asked him about including it in the blog. 🙂 He finally decided Edith would probably tolerate his indiscretion – not like its “news” or anything!)
Speaking of which, Edith,


Speaking of which, Edith, Sam couldn’t place the tag, “hatch”. We brainstormed – was it a nickname? A game? A gift? Nothing rang a bell. You’ll have to explain! He’s looking forward to the pictures with Clara. Sorry about Chelinna’s illness (but glad she’s better) and the termites! Yikes! He sends his thanks, too, for the rest of your news.
Nona, that joke you sent about the Catholic Horses? Somehow, when I printed it the punch line got cut off, so I’ll have to take it next time. At any rate, keep those jokes coming! The rest of you too – Sam really loves them. 🙂
Dick, you and Emily are in Sam’s thoughts. He knows that it must be very stressful for you both and hopes everything goes well with the surgery. Please keep us posted, ok?
Our overall conversation today floated around quite a bit. Sam’s first comment when I arrived was about how great it was that [the BM] had visited him. 🙂 Then he asked about [the FP], with a bit of an implication about how the two of us are doing. (My next stop was therapy with her, so I was watching the clock in order not to be late. As I departed, I said, “wish me luck” and he said “you sound like you’re going to your deathbed.” It wasn’t THAT bad, although I wouldn’t exactly call it fun. It went ok.)
Sam had a Bostonia magazine that had a front page story on homeschooling, so we talked about that for a bit, whether or not we ‘agreed’ with the notion or not, what (minimal) experience/exposure each of us had with it. He wanted me to notice the quilt that was made for him by ICT students from SIT sometime ago – it’s a big one. (The ICT program is now the PIM program – Program in Intercultural Management.) And a sketch that a woman who “was married to a Cuban” made of him in “less than half-an-hour.”
We debated the likeness. Sam says he thinks it does look like him. For me, it was a bit of a stretch because of the eyes….he looks somber, not happy, and I think he really is happy most of the time. One of the nurses had told him that it “doesn’t allow for personality,” and I decided it represents his thoughtful side. When I said this, he said, “Oh.” I said “what do you think you don’t have one?!!” He grinned, you know he LOVES teasing. 🙂 Somehow this got us back on the subject of his speaking.
Barbara Dunn and the activities director, Karen, had both commented on Sam’s speech being clearer recently. I think it has a lot to do with his energy level. I mentioned how proud I was that [the BM] had listened carefully enough to understand him, and that I think the strategy of repeating what I think he’s said for clarity is still a good one. He said that people (unspecified) often “assume a lot” about what he is trying to say. There was a something in the way he said it that made me ask, “too much?” And he nodded. Which reinforces for me, again, that is important to verify understanding.
The other bit of news that Sam had was that two women who both lived in Eden Park had died recently. He had a bouquet of flowers from Ruth Fellows’ funeral. Sam used to take her Meals on Wheels when she lived at Putney Meadows. She was 99. The other woman, Peg Sisko (sp?) was over 100.
School starts for me next week, but I’m going to try my best to keep seeing Sam regularly. My goal is once a week, but it might turn out to be more like once every two weeks. Please keep your comments and jokes coming; he really really looks forward to them.
Best to all!

6 thoughts on “The shiner is fading”

  1. Sam I think you told everyone you got the black eye from a fall, but I think you got in trouble with one of the care givers…..haha…..

  2. Ciao Bello!!
    Yup, it’s me again. I was pretty wiped from the trip to China, (thus, the lag in communication) and tomorrow I head out for the return trip to Santa Fe. Anyway, I helped Mom post her message on the blog. I think she’s got the hang of it. She checks her e-mail about once every wk. or two, so anything urgent needs to be phoned to her!
    So, you said something smart-a’d and got smacked in the eye? Uh-oh, must be the same ole Sam! So glad to hear that your speech is clearer and that you have more energy. The idea of people repeating what you’ve said is GREAT, then all involved can be on the same topic. Actually, it is the only way that I think you’ll achieve good communication. (It could help most people in almost every relationship!) But, I understand that at times people don’t/won’t take the time; I’m sorry that it happens. I’m sorry I can’t come to visit you. I’m so glad Steph has been able to visit and get all this up and running. Mom and I would have loved to come this summer or fall — we’re sending virtual hugs and kisses!
    I have a couple of jokes to send you, but Mom’s printer is jammed and I’ll have to wait ’till I get home to print and send. I’ll try to print out a couple of pictures from China w/ James and I.
    Whew, what a fantastic trip!! It’s a very long story — but I tried to do a good Samaritan deed (like I wonder who all in my background I learned that from?!? Sam, Edith & Eddie are at the top of that list.) Anyway, through a very involved series of events, the guy I helped over a 6 hr. period at an airport, turned out to be very wealthy. He and an interpreter visited me in Santa Fe to thank me and suddenly, I became “Vewy Bwig Fuiend.” Which translates into he thanks me w/ invitation to China and then, of course I reciprocate by issuing him an “Invitation to America,” (more details than you want to know), so he and 5 associates can come to the US for buisness. One hand washes the other and all that. He wants to “continue” this connection and have me do work w/ him, must investigate more. Thus far I think I’ve covered my behind, he has (hopefully) what he needs for the Embassy to get to the states, and James and I scored big time w/ travel!
    We paid for our flights to the island of Hainan, from there on all expenses were covered!!! Can you believe it?? I mean all flights, food, hotels, other transportation, interpreters, private drivers, etc., etc. Phew, an experience of a lifetime. See what you started Sam? Never miss an opportunity to travel — the more exotic the better!!!
    I must get to packing or I’ll never make it home. I’ll give you more details of the trip later, but did at least want to touch base. Did Greg and his wife get to visit you this summer? I haven’t heard. How did his visit to the doctor about his stomach/digestive problems turn out, or do you know? I’ll have more time to write to everyone once I get home, and will ask Pat.
    Oh, I neglected to mention that Mom had cardiac arrest over the mention, of should I say the “B” word again??? — shhhhhh, “beer.” Seriously, not an issue. Your life is your life. You wanted us all to be open in this blog, so we all, including Mom, want the same from you. So, though Mom doesn’t drink, she’s never fainted from seeing anyone else do so. She doesn’t shock that easily! She thot I shouldn’t put in the part about cardiac arrest, but “the devil made me do it.”
    Oh, from Mom, “Hatch” refers to ……(I’m now playing sec’y for Mom and transcribing while she talks) a German word Sam used to call her and Eddie years ago — “hatches.” Grandma Vogel used to call us kids “hatsia,” especially when offering us candy behind our parents’ backs. (I’m doin’ this phonetically, as I have no idea how to spell in German). Please see if Sam remembers that he used to just shorten the German word and “horrors,” (like Sam never does this???) made up his own word — “hatches.”
    Edith thinks the word Grandma used means “honey, or sweetie,” something along those lines. She’s currently off to her study to find the German dictionary. Now she’s looking thru some sort of flash cards in German — she said maybe it’s a take off on the German word, “Herz,” (Sammy will have to pronounce that German word, sounds kinda like “hertz,”) which means heart, sweet, darling, hardy, cordial, affectionate, etc. Hope that jogs the memory for you Sam.
    I’ll write again once I get to NM. I’m glad your energy is up, but I’ll always be upset you’re stuck in that bed. I love you bunches. Mom sends her love as well. Auf Wiedersen! “Catch ya at the look-out point,” — Sam will provide the creative Spanish for that definition. Big hugs, Jennifer

  3. Hi Sam,
    Greetings from Kabul. It’s along way from Putney/Brattleboro in so many ways. Take care,Rick

  4. Hi Sammy, It was so good to see you Sun evening and Mon a.m. My trip home went well and I was in bed by 9:00 p.m.! So tired after the night in Hell at the Econolodge. (Kids upstairs, our dogs barking= no sleep.) This Blog is great to catch up on everyone, Sam & Steph. What is Rick doing in Kabul? Lv, Pat

  5. Hi, Sam. My mother was feeling very poorly two weeks after we returned from a two month trip across country to my doctoral graduation and then to visit family and friends. I brought her to my home in Vermont. She is getting stronger bit by bit. She is 88 now.
    SIT has begun classes and I also coordinate a short term program for 11 development professionals from Southeast Asia. It is still a very stimulating and creative place here.
    I think of you fondly and love hearing about you and what is going on in your life. I hope that when the “dust settles” with my mom, I will be able to make that visit to you that I have been planning to do for a VERY long time.
    Love, Karen

  6. Hi Sam.. Thinking about you and know that you will be watching the debate between Edwards & Cheney tonight. I hope Edwards kicks Cheney’s ass.
    Phil & Lorraine stopped by here one Saturday recently as they had a “seminar” at Bridgewater State College. Here is a chuckle for you.. Lv ya, Pat
    What to Read?
    What to Read, What to Read?
    PROBLEM: Two books are for sale.
    Which to buy? “Titanic” or “My Life” by Bill Clinton?
    Titanic: $29.99
    Clinton: $29.99
    Titanic: Over 3 hours to read
    Clinton: Over 3 hours to read
    Titanic: The story of Jack and Rose, their forbidden love,
    and subsequent catastrophe
    Clinton: The story of Bill and Monica, their forbidden love,
    and subsequent catastrophe
    Titanic: Jack is a starving artist
    Clinton: Bill is a bullshit artist
    Titanic: In one scene, Jack enjoys a good cigar
    Clinton: Ditto for Bill
    Titanic: During ordeal, Rose’s dress gets ruined
    Clinton: Ditto for Monica
    Titanic: Jack teaches Rose to spit
    Clinton: Let’s not go there
    Titanic: Rose gets to keep her jewelry
    Clinton: Monica’s forced to return her gifts
    Titanic: Rose remembers Jack for the rest of her life
    Clinton: Clinton doesn’t remember Jack
    Titanic: Rose goes down on a vessel full of seamen
    Clinton: Monica…ooh, let’s not go there, either
    Titanic: Jack surrenders to an icy death
    Clinton: Bill goes home to Hilary….basically the same

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