Monthly Archives: April 2022

Memory Lane

Today a call came through our customer support line at work and one of my team answered and the caller asked for me. My team is pretty well trained to not just transfer anything to me and when speaking to customers, they know that they need to first try to assist them before transferring to anyone – let alone me. This caller must have been persistent though as finally my rep called out to me across the room that she had a Doug S on the line and he wants to speak to me and he doesn’t have an order. Big red flags in her book and I’m surprised she didn’t cut him off and tell him to contact the general email box if he wanted to make contact. Something made her ask though and as soon as she did, my mind flashed to a Doug S from my childhood that I think of and wonder about from time to time.

I took the call and he announced himself and, so incredulous was I that this was THE Doug S that I had known, that I made him verify who his sister’s name is. He named her and so I astoundedly greeted him with the kind of “holy cow, what are you doing, how are you, what are you up to, how did you find me, how’s the family, what is going on?” flood of words that no one can answer in the responding sentence.

Doug and his sister are children of a couple that my parents were really good friends with for several years when we were growing up. Because our parents were all friends and would get together, we too hung out quite often as a result of the parents congregating. Doug was my age and his sister was just a year or two younger (as I recall).

Doug began the conversation explaining that his sister had just been going through some old photos at their parents home and came across one of me and so she sent it to him as a quiz to see if he would recognize who was in the photo. He said that he immediately knew it was me and decide to just look me up and give me a call. He had thought about our family often over the years and figured today was the day to finally see where we all were. He said he found a link to me in CO and then followed that and found my workplace and well, we were there speaking, so I knew the rest. He said he wouldn’t take up my work time, so he provided his number and said to give him a call when I had time.

I had to admit that I too would think of him and his family over the years. They were such a great family to be around. I did try to look them up several years ago after Mom and Dad passed away. I wanted to know if their old friends were still around or not and of course I wanted to know what happened to Doug and his sister. The problem was, I had no idea where they had moved as his dad was a minister and like any pastor, they would move around as called to do.

I don’t quite recall what age we were when they moved from our nearby town to across the state, but we did still keep in touch for several years after they moved. I can remember still visiting them for quite a few years. I remember Doug coming to see me at Ohio State my freshman year, but after that, we seemed to be on our own paths and lost touch.

I finished up work, made a stop at the grocery on the way home, made dinner and then sat down and called my old pal. No, his voice was not the same as it had been 40 years ago (yes, believe it or not, it has been that long), but his energy, inflections, and caring attitude was the same. We still talked easily and it was really great to think back on some of the stories and antics that happened. He said it was easy to think of me as he still sports the scar on his foot from when I tried to get him to ride our cow named Queen and in pushing him on, I accidently pushed him over and off the other side and he fell off and cut his foot open on whatever sharp thing happened to be below him when he fell. I could hardly believe that he even remembered the cow’s name.

We found out we had many common threads in our lives. We both had gotten married at about the same time in our lives and have stayed married. We both had a couple of kids. He is ahead of me with grandkids, but I’ll give him that one. He was sorry about my parents passing in the years prior and said he had been saddened to hear it at the time. He was very fond of all of our family just as I was of his, and it’s sad to think that they are gone. Luckily, his parents are still mostly well and live near him.

I relayed that I’ve been going through a few tough months with Ted’s passing. He relayed that he couldn’t comprehend personally since he hadn’t gone through it, but I could feel his sincerity in being a bit heartbroken for me. We finished the conversation with a promise that we wouldn’t wait another 40 years to have the next conversation.

I got off of the phone and felt good. It was a nice reminder that while I am kinda caught up in grieving what I have had for the past 33 years in marriage, it is just a portion of the memories I have in total and I’m not just defined by being a wife or widow or mom or co-worker or friend, or any one thing. I have lots of stories and people and events and experiences that have stitched together this fabric of life that I pull around me. It was nice to be surprised by the past showing up and in seeing that, it made more room for envisioning wonderful moments that will cross my path in the future.

Thank you Doug for the reach out and catching up.

Love Sal

Five Excellent Ingredients.

You know, they say with five excellent ingredients, you can create a masterpiece. I can attest to this.

I was blessed to go to a show this weekend. It was billed as ROBERTA GAMBARINI/HOUSTON PERSON/ERIC GUNNISON/CHUCK BERGHOFER/LEWIS NASH

My friends had seen Roberta Gamarini recently and have been following Eric Gunnison at venues in Denver for years, so when they invited me to the supper club of Dazzle to see the performance, I easily agreed to go.

I won’t claim to know much about Jazz and had never seen or heard these musicians before, but I can tell you my experience.

The show started with Roberta singing a solo a cappella. She showed her brilliant voice and range and soulful delivery and if music was a meal, this would have been a bite to satisfy and make you think you didn’t need any other ingredients.

This musical performance by all masters of their trade, did make me feel like I was having a meal for the soul.

The sax player was an older gentleman and when he played the saxophone, I could nearly swear that his notes had the words to them just as if he was singing alongside Roberta. I chuckled to myself when he first came upon the stage as his saxophone looked like it hadn’t been polished in years. I guess I’m so use to bright shiny instruments, that it caught my eye that it lacked the luster and shine of the normally seen on polished brass. But when I heard him play, it was as if he had allowed a bit of every note that had ever been produced in it to cling to part of it’s surface so that every following note had just a little more resonance from having come after previously played notes. As I sat there, it really did remind me of how they say that a good smoker/grill gets better the more it is used and that leaving some of the residue helps the next batch gain even more flavor.

The piano player used the piano like it was the backup singer who could have been the main star, but was content to play notes that sang along, and harmonizing beutifully with the main voice. His playing also created visions (at least for me) of a dancer, tapping and twirling off to the side while the singer sang.

The drummer, having those smaller and higher pitched drums than the rock sets, set the beat and accents to the tunes much as the piano player did. He would sometime lay down the beat with what felt like a caress of his drums and symbols and sometimes belting out his notes and showing the voice of his set had just as much range as anyone on the stage. Like the piano, his drumming would also allow me to think of him as another backup singer and dancer as his notes twirled and tapped on the opposite side of the stage.

And then there was the bassist – a gentleman who use to play with Frank Sinatra. Truth be told, they have all played with the greats and are greats on their own, but his years with Frank are the easiest for me to recall and relay. He knew how to let the star shine, but give them everything as a base to sing upon that brings it all together like a fine dish. I did keep coming back to the analogy of food when I listened to them all – together and individually. It wasn’t until the bassist had his first solo routine within a song, that it dawned on me, that in my food analogy, he was the amazing sauce that I smelled cooking throughout and didn’t overpower any bite, but brought it together so wonderfully.

Roberta Gambarini was not just the main attraction and was not just this singer whose amazing voice carried on the waves and flow of the notes the others layed down in accompaniment to her. She would lavish her clear full octave range singing upon us, and then suddenly, she would transform into another instrument on the stage. She would scat sing notes alongside all the other instruments that made for a fifth instrument that could again solo on its own.

It seems that Roberta travels and sings all over the world and picks up good musicians or already established jazz bands to accompany her wherever she goes, so this was one of those five-set shows, that came together with five incredible people that we were lucky enough to see on the fourth of the shows. This meant that they were five superb ingredients that in the food sense would each had been tasty on their own, but given the time to stew in the shows before us, we were served the masterpiece of a dish that had the time to cook and simmer and bubble until what we were served was perfect.

Such a good time and yes, all of those individuals will be playing individually or with different people in the coming days and weeks, but I feel so thankful to have gotten to enjoy them all together and will savor it.

Yes, we were only maybe 12 feet from the stage, so when I say it was an intimate concert experience, I mean it.

Thank you my pals for including me.

Happy Easter everyone. So much to be thankful for.

Love Sally


Poems are a funny thing. Not funny haha, altho some limericks come to mind that make me chuckle. Poems are words, sometimes set to rhyme and sometimes to a cadence and sometimes they just seem to just have words that the person penning it puts together in an abstract way.

I sometime will write a card to someone and make a poem out of it. Sometimes I will set to writing a poem and in that process of finding words and phrases that work, my mind digs into my heart and finds not what I set out to convey, but something else that flows out altogether differently than I had expected.

I have a poem somewhere inside of me for Ted, but I currently cannot even get it started. It feels like trying to pick up a grain of sand just as a dump truck has raised its bed and opened the gate. What you thought could be picked up is now buried under a massive pile.

The beauty of words and poems are that everyone has access to the same words and just through thoughts and ideas and creativity, these words can be put together in so many ways. That is why some days, we can read someone else’s words and you recognize them and identify with it and it feels familiar because if you could have, you might have done it the same way.

Well, that happened to me tonight as I read the following poem. It pulled the words out of my heart and put them in front of me to read and feel. So, while this isn’t my poem, it is very much one I say in my heart to Ted as I go to sleep.

I’ll still work on words of my own and who knows, I may even share it here.

Love Sally

Joy Wins

I know some have been wondering how the wedding went and how we all did emotionally with the sadness of not having Ted with us. Well, it was a great day filled with friends and family and the joy of the day filled our hearts and the room and conquered the dread and tears that had been prevalent leading up to the day.
The wedding couple had their hearts set on their pup being the ring bearer and since the Lake House has a strict “No Dogs” rule inside the facility, they had planned to have it outdoors. A risky business at an elevation of 7200 feet in Colorado in early April. And while it wasn’t balmy by anyone’s meter, it had stopped drizzling rain and the wind settled just long enough to have the ceremony out at the edge of the mostly ice covered lake. Geese flew over the ceremony honking their approval, the ceremony was lovely and all went without a hitch.

I’ve attempted to put together a little slide show of the week of the wedding with a hike with my siblings and prep of the food trays and some of the pics that have been shared with me from friends and family. I left my phone at home, so I didn’t take any pics. I had actually forgotten it, but in reality, I had no place to put it as there wasn’t an extra inch to shove a phone anywhere in my dress. TC did my hair and a bit of makeup to cover the sunburn that we had all gotten a few days prior from hanging out on the deck between and after jobs that everyone was busy trying to complete during their stay.

If the video doesn’t play right, let me know and I’ll repost as some individual pics.

Thanks for all who kept us all in your thoughts and prayers as we navigated such an important day and week.



Week of positives

This week seems to be setting up as a week of positives.

It began with finally putting the dress back on and getting it zipped. It didn’t spit a seem, so I’ll consider it good that I don’t have to try the shower method to stretch the fibers. I also found a pair of shoes. The shoes, in opposition to the fitting of the dress, are actually a bit big, but at least one part of me won’t be sausaged into its casing.

My cousin was here helping over the weekend and with most of our severe weather behind us (we hope), we decided to unwrap the bees and see if they made it through the winter. The bees look to be good and thriving and my cousin thinks we have enough to even split the hive and let one of the frames of bees create their own queen to give us a complete second hive. Pretty exciting.

We next got the truck running. We have a full size pickup that hasn’t been run in months as it has been snowed in and not dug out through any of our snow storms this winter. We hooked it to the charger for a few hours and got it going. It wasn’t until after we had a load of misc stuff full and taken down the hill and dumped at the office dumpster that I noticed that the plates had expired way into 2021. I’ll add it to the list of stuff that needs done, but at least I didn’t get pulled over for it.

Then one day this week, as I was driving home in the pouring rain, my driver side windshield wiper started to have an issue as it was clearing off the water as I drove. It was acting as if there was a bump in my windshield that it would catch and flop over each time midway through the upswing oF the wiper. Of coarse there was no bump in the windshield, but at the same spot on each cycle, it was having an issue. While I was varying the speed of the wipers to see if that had an effect, the wiper all of a sudden broke off and flung into the lane next to me. So now I’m still going 65 down the highway and have nothing clearing my drivers side window. I slide myself over a tad in my seat so that I can see out of the middle of the windshield that is still being cleared by the passenger wiper and try to figure out what my options were.

I made it to the next exit and as I pulled into a store filled area, I asked Siri to tell me where the closest auto parts store was. Siri recommended the Chevy dealership just down the road a mile or so. I was right across from the mall, but couldn’t think of anywhere in the mall that would have wipers. The Subaru dealership is also just down the road just past the Chevy, Honda and other dealerships that always seem to build in rows. Resigning myself to pay dealership prices, I head in that direction.

I know you are wondering what the positive is on this story, but I’m getting there.

I drove into the service bay at the Subaru dealership and stepped up to the counter and the nice gal asked what I was there to have done. I explained that my drivers side wiper had flown off on the highway, so I needed a replacement wiper. Seeming to not quite get it that I would show up in a downpour with no wiper, she went to check the car out for herself. She shook her head as if there was a sieve in her brain and with the slight jiggle, the pieces would sift through and begin to make sense. She got back to her station behind the desk and picked up the phone. I assumed she was calling the parts dept to bring up a high dollar Subaru blade but no one seemed to be answering on the other end of her line. She excused herself and left the service bay. A few minutes later she returned with two blades and had snagged one of the guys to swap out my blades. I told them that one of the auto parts places had just changed the passenger one a week or so ago, but they said that they replace in pairs. Great, I was thinking, now they are going to gouge me for two blade on some technicality.

Turns out, the passenger blade wasn’t even installed correctly and it was lucky that it too hadn’t come off. So, as I’m starting to feel lucky at any cost of this new set of wipers, the guy puts down the new blades and the girl says she will open the bay door for me and I’m free to go. Literally Free. They charged me nothing for the blades or swapping them out. How lucky was I to have it happen where there was only the dealership and not a parts store.

The week is of coarse, ending on the positives of two of my siblings being here.

My sister and her husband arrived last night and she is already making me laugh every time I try on the dress or shoes. I had to try it on to see where my necklace fell into place at on the dress (in case I needed to take it to be adjusted) and we laughed all the way through the fitting.

My oldest Brother arrives today, so more hilarity will be forthcoming with him as well.

I hope your week has had a good string of positives too.

Love Sally