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Saturday, April 30, 2011

A Beautiful Goodbye
In my last entry, we were getting ready for the pooja at home. There was lots of preparation to make sure the event went off without a hitch. Karran came over at about 7:30am and I proceeded with shaving his head. I cut it low and Karran decided that he wanted it even lower so I did that. Then he went off to dispose of the hair in the river at Toiler’s Park which is one of the parks on the Red River that my parents frequented on the way to the Bridge Drive-In (ashop that’s famous for great ice-cream).

I had a shower while everyone else started cooking the food. When Karran returned from the river, he wanted his head shaved completely so I took the razor and shaved it down to the scalp. Does that mean I scalped him? He thought he looked pretty funny but after more than 35 years being a hairstylist, I thought his head looked pretty good. There were no craters or bumps and no patchy areas. He has a full head of hair, albeit mostly grey. I told him when it starts to grow back, we’ll call him the silver fox. That was done and he got dressed in his pooja clothes which co-incidentally was Dad’s. He looked exactly like Dad with the same kurta and scarf as the picture that was in the obit.

For the food, we made some parsad, paneer curry, dhall, rice, spinach, potato curry and pumpkin. The pandit arrived at about 10:30am and the pooja got started shortly after. It was very short but the pandit explained the symbolism of the rituals. Aunties Maggie and Rosaline arrived just as the service was starting which they were happy about. There were about 20 people for lunch and as soon as that was done

We had lunch after the service and packed up Karran’s ½ ton truck with the things to take to the mandir for the food preparation. I had everyone do a great deal of the prep work so that the actual cooking would not take very long, especially that all of it was vegetarian. We arrived at the mandir sometime between 1:30-2pm. Karran and Prak unloaded the stuff and took it into the mandir.

Randolph and Ram were downstairs ready to start preparing the food. Dolly was upstairs vacuuming the prayer area in preparation for spreading the sheets on the floor. Bena, Sophie and Sunita helped her prepare the area while I ran up and down the stairs between food prep area and prayer area directing how and what I wanted. Every so often, someone would call for me to attend either to the food prep, the parsad bags, the fruit bags, or something that needed my attention. In between all of this I was trying to set up my computer, screen and data projector. I had tested all the equipment at home and everything was working like clockwork but... you can see where this is heading I bet. As with clockwork, sometimes a spring breaks loose or a battery decides to fail or it gets wet and won’t work or it just decides to stop for no apparent reason. Well such was the case with me. No stress whatsoever. The equipment fails to work and it’s a main component of the memorial service. For some reason beyond explanation, I set up the same computer and data projector that I had tested at home and it wouldn’t work no matter how many times I rebooted the computer or redid the connections in different sequences. By this time, I am trying to think on my feet so I called the library at the college and as luck would have it, I spoke to a library tech that had participated in a focus group I conducted last month. She walked me through the connections again (which I had already done since I often use data projectors and computers as part of my work) but to no avail. So she offered to go and find one of the computer technicians who would be able to assist me. She called me back to say that he was not available so she tried walking me through another connection (which I had already tried too) but that didn’t work either. I asked her if I could send Robin to pick up a different one and she said that she did indeed have another one available. Sunita called Sharm who was just about to leave her home and asked her to bring her laptop computer just in case the problem was with my laptop. Robin was about to leave for the data projector when it occurred to me that I could ask one of the consultants from my office to bring the one I usually use since they were planning to attend the service. They said they would so I called the library and told them that I found one.

All of this is happening while I am running back and forth from the downstairs cooking to the upstairs prayer area. Then Sunita asked if I wasn’t going to get changed. I brought extra clothes since it would be cumbersome to be going back and forth in a sari. I scooted downstairs to get changed but a sari is not the easiest thing to get into very quickly. Everyone else had the common sense to wear a shalwar or langa but my sense is not common sometimes, so I chose a sari. Fortunately, I had previously taken it to get it pre-stitched so it wasn’t so very time consuming – although it still was.

People started arriving at the mandir by about 3:15pm (where did the time go so quickly?) and by 4pm, the data projector was hooked up thanks to my supervisor Gene and the service started just about on time. I had prepared a program in advance so that was very good and helped keep things on time. I acted as the Mistress of Ceremonies (or something like that). The pandit read a chapter from the Gita and explained how the Atma (soul) lives on and takes a new form based on your deeds in this lifetime. After that, there were four bhajans by Auntie Jaimattie, Unlce Jep, Chris and Uncle Bhowani (who was not on the program but wanted to sing a bhajan in memory of Dad). Then Sophie’s friend Mesia sang a song titled “Dance with my Father.” She had a beautiful, soft voice and sang with just the right amount of soulfulness to make anyone who lost a father feel that loss.

Then I opened the microphone to any friends who might want to say something so Dad’s nurses Monique and Kerry got up and said that they were Dad’s nurses for the last three years while he was at home and each time they went, he would offer them some grapes that he had taken to his alter each morning to be blessed. They said that they felt that when they partook of that, they were taking communion every morning. After they were done, Karran got up to pay tribute to Dad. He was funny but it was heartfelt and genuine. Dad and Karran have sometimes had a complicated relationship but there he was, doing everything he could for the last rites for his father. He and I were talking last week and he said it was ironic that over the years he and Dad disagreed about so many things but I saw no irony in that. I told him that the relationship between fathers and sons are very complex and fathers put all their own unachieved hopes and dreams on their sons so that their sons could become the man they hoped to be but thought they weren’t. So that’s why he and Dad could not always see eye to eye but there was not a day that Dad was not proud of his son and he made sure that others knew that. I told him that he was more like his father than even he could see and the rest of us always knew that the disagreements were his way of finding his own identity. I’ll have to ask Karran for his permission to share his speech with you and as soon as he gives it to me (as I’m sure he will), I’ll post it.

Then it was my turn. I had been psyching myself up for this for days and I made sure that I did not make eye contact with anyone in the audience, otherwise I would have cried for sure. There were a few times when I looked at Mom, Sharm, Bena and Karran and one of some of them were crying so I made sure to look away, mostly to keep my own composure. I started off by drawing everyone’s attention to the program I had prepared. I had actually started out last week in the typical fashion of recounting Dad’s life and his achievements but after receiving dozens of calls in the previous week about how Dad made a difference in people’s lives, I decided that the program would tell those stories so that’s what I did. I documented what some of the people were saying and that became the program.

I then talked about how Dad taught me the importance of family and how I should never forget that. I talked about the time when I was in primary school and I came home for lunch. Dad was angry that apparently I was rude to Grandfather Khartoon and I had to go back to his house and beg his pardon before I could have my lunch. I did that and came home suitably humbled and had my lunch. I obviously didn’t do it on purpose but it was the last time I did that. It took me several days before I built up the courage to ask Dad how come most people have two grandfathers and I have 15. I told the audience of my usual routine each day to and from school four times a day. I would leave home to go to school and as I left the yard, this was how my walk to school went: Good morning Nani; Good Morning Uncle Ramdat; Good Morning Auntie Betty; Good Morning Grandfather Kaaza; Good Morning Grandfather Sulti; Good Morning Grandfather Charlie; Good morning Grandfather Doobray; Good Morning Grandfahter Subraj; Good Morning Grandfather Khartoon; Good Morning Grandfather Walter; Good Morning Grandfather Indar; Good Morning Grandfather John; Good Morning Grandfather Prem; Good Morning Grandfather Gunu; Good Morning Grandfather Sensey (if he was standing on the dam); Good Morning Grandfather Toi; Good Morning Uncle Khad; Good Morning Mr Powley; Good Morning Sharda’s mother; Good Morning Grandmother Bhan; Good Morning Uncle Boysee; Good Morning Mr Haynes; and if there were other grandfathers from Lilliendaal, it would be Good Morning Grandfather Houston; Good Morning Grandfather Leel. I said this very quickly and got a chuckle from the audience because I was also moving my head from side to side to show how a person could almost get whiplash from doing that 4 times each day. I said that I eventually asked Dad now come I have so many grandfathers and he proceeded to explain how we were all related. I couldn’t leave well enough alone so I had to ask another question about how come I have so many aunties and uncles at which time I got another lesson in family connections. Dad was part of the reason why I have an extensive collection of stories of my family and a huge collection of names for my family tree. I then talked about how Dad asked me to help him sort out their important papers – you know the ones I’m referring to – the title of your house, your birth, baptism, communion and other certificates, your diplomas, your records of immunizations and your will. In amongst those papers, I found a letter that I had written to Dad for Father’s Day dated June 16, 1986. I read that letter to everyone. Although it was meant only for my Dad, I’m now sharing it with you and the rest of the world. The words I wrote almost 25 years ago are as meaningful today as they were then. I’ll post it tomorrow as a scanned image so you may have to download it to read it. In the meantime, I am including the program that I handed out.

After I finished reading my letter, I showed a picture slide show of Dad’s life with his family. That’s what family meant to him so the theme for the memorial was about Dad and his family. I also chose to include the words of the song The Impossible Dream because it sums up Dad’s fight with the enemy that’s cancer – one that he was not going to win but one in which he was determined to fight to the very end. And he put up a valiant and courageous fight.

In the coming days, I’ll put up some of the pictures that I showed in the slide show.

sandra
PS: I've raised $780 so far toward my $2,000 goal.  Walk with me or support my walk...
http://cancercarefdn.mb.ca/NetCommunity/Page.aspx?pid=708&frsid=3155

Remembering Dood Bayney







February 2, 1931- April 19, 2011

AUM BHOOR BHUWAH SWAHA, TAT SAVITUR VARENYAM,
BHARGO DEVASAYA DHEEMAHI, DHIYO YO NAHA PRACHODAYAT.

O Lord,
Thou are the protector of life and of breath,
dispeller of miseries and Bestower of happiness.
Thou are the Creator and the most acceptable intelligence,
possessing eternal qualities.
May Thine qualities and Thy inspiration pass to us.

  
Memories from family and friends
  • He was a very caring man for his family and his friends (Wife: Sharie Bayney)
  • I remember Dood Buddy with his black, curly hair (Family friend: Dolly, Florida)
  • Mamoo Dood used to be very strict with girl children so he would give us such a “cut-eye” if we were playing outside the yard too long (Niece: Gaytri, Florida)
  • He was our gold finger Cha-cha because he always had candies in his pocket to give us (Nieces: Geeta and Seeta, Florida)
  • He was our chocolate Mamoo because he used to give us chocolate (Niece: Dolly, New York)
  • Since my father died, you have now taken the place of our father (Nephew: Eddie, Florida)
  • I remember when we were small and hungry and we would go to your house to eat (Nephew: Kamal, New York) 
  • I love you too Nana (Great grand-daughters: Sahana and Sabreena)
  • Uncle Dood was like a father to me. I can never forget how kind he was and I will miss him very much (Niece: Joanie, New York)
  • I will never forget my uncle; he was like a father to me (Niece: Shakeela, Guyana)
  • I remember when I was little and sometimes when we had no food, so we would come to your house for food (Nephew: Zad, Florida)
  • I have wonderful memories of him and remember being doubled over in laughter more than once from stories he shared with me (Niece: Kami, Ottawa)
  • He was a true gentleman to the end (Family friend: Jeanette, Florida)
  • “The Dood” told me that God lifted him up and threw him down with his cancer but he always landed on a bed of feathers (Family friend: Prak, Toronto)
  • Grandpa would kiss Sahana’s feet and feed her dhall and roti and she loved it (Grand-daughter: Sharmila, Winnipeg)
  • He would always greet me with “Hi Sis, how you doing!” (Family friend: Jaimattie, Winnipeg)
  • He was a great whistler. You always knew when he was coming (Cousin: Goutham, Calgary)
  • He calls me Sugar Plum and Mama. Is that a good thing? (Nurse: Chandel)
  • He was always so dapper (Grand-son-in-law’s mother: Roberta, Winnipeg)
  • He had great fun on the numerous bus trips (Friend: Helen, Winnipeg)
  • My brother and I spent many wonderful times together. I couldn’t keep a girlfriend because as soon as they met him they would like him instead (Brother: Deo, England).
  • We always had to have the best Dad could afford for us and that meant that it had to be washed, ironed and polished (Daughter: Sabena, Calgary)
  • There is no one else like Dood Bayney. He is indeed one of a kind (Family friend: Yvonne, Guyana)
  • Whenever I saw him he was so social and so complimentary (Son-in-law’s sister: Radha, New York)
  • I remember when I got into a fight with some men and if you didn’t come to my rescue, I don’t know that would have happened to me (Cousin: Sydney, New York)
  • We used to have some great discussions about politics, religion, anything (Son-in-law: Zaman, Calgary)
  • As a child I was afraid of you but as I grew older I came to realize why I was afraid and that was because you were very strict and kids never like when you’re strict. Only then I knew you were trying to let us grow in the right manner, so for that I will always love you (Sister-in-law: Maggie, Toronto)
  • Dood Cha-cha really did give me some good advice that I will live with and I am very grateful for the time I spent with him in Florida (Niece: Sunita, Florida)
  • I looked forward to the visits in my office as we planned your future travel adventures. It was wonderful to share this excitement with you (Friend: Agnes, Winnipeg)
  • He still looks like James Bond to me. (Family Friend: Farida, Texas)
  • We call him John Wayne because he always wins on the John Wayne machine (Friends: Katie and Myron, Winnipeg)
  • Did I tell you that you are my most beautiful grand-daughter?” (Grand-daughters: Sharmila, Sunita and Subhadra)
  • He was such a good brother-in-law to me. He was always there for me (Sisters-in-law: Gladys, Jean, and Fatima)
  • He was like a Dad to me (Family friend: Tara, Missouri)
  • The most important lessons I learned from you is never to give up in the face of adversity and to persevere till you achieve your goals (Daughter: Sandra, Winnipeg)
Program


• Reading of the Gita: Pandit Dr. Shiv Prasad Shastri
• Bhajan: Jaimattie Kenneth
• Bhajan: Jep Jaikarran
• Bhajan: Chris Singh
• Tributes: Open to Friends
• Song: Mesia Custodio
• Tributes: Family
• Eulogy: Savitree
• Photo Presentation
• Thank you’s

The Impossible Dream
To dream the impossible dream
To fight the unbeatable foe
To bear with unbearable sorrow, and
To run where the brave dare not go

To right the unrightable wrong, and
To love pure and chaste from afar
To try when your arms are too weary
To reach the unreachable star

This is my quest
To follow that star
No matter how hopeless
No matter how far

To fight for the right
Without question or pause
To be willing to march, march into Hell
For a heavenly cause

And I know if I'll only be true
To this glorious quest
That my heart will lie peaceful and calm
When I'm laid to my rest

And the world will be better for this
That one man, scorned and covered with scars
Still strove with his last ounce of courage
To reach the unreachable the unreachable star

sandra

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Memorial service today

We were bussssy yesterday.  I am sure that each of us worked as much as three people each.  We washed and chopped, cooked, cleaned, packed...just about any and everything.  The fridges are completely packed and the freezer is emptying pretty quickly.  I didn't realize how much bread, veggies, soap, laundry detergent, paper towels, toilet paper, dishes, glasses, flour, milk, canned goods, and - well, a grocery store really - I have in my home.  They've been disappearing off the shelves just from cooking and feeding everyone in the last week.

It's amazing how everyone is working together.  They just ask what needs to get done, go off and do it without question and help out anyone who needs help.  That's a lot easier for me than having people second guessing and offering suggestions but not work.

This morning I have to shave Karran's head, Then he has to dispose of the hair in flowing water, shower and get ready for the pooja at 10am.  Then I shower and get ready to prepare the food for the pooja.  We are all doing that.  There'll be about 25 people attending that and we are cooking the usual pooja food except without garlic and onions as per the pandit's instructions.  We'll be putting our cooking skills to the test to cook dhall, rice, potato curry, katahar, pumpkin, spinach, and parsad.  I also made some paneer and veggie curry as well. Last night we cooked and packed about 500 puri.  That was a job by itself but I had quite a production line set up and it worked beautifully.  Sharon mixed the flour, Mom, sized the dough, Bena and Sophie rolled out the dough, Sharm and I finished the rolling and Karran and Prak cooked and packed the puri.  Robin fried some paneer in the mean time.

The memorial service is this afternoon at 4pm so we'll be heading off to the mandir for 1pm to cook and set up the place for the service. If anyone from Winnipeg is reading this, you are invited this afternoon. Dinner is served after so come hungy.  Take care everyone and hope to see you this aft. 

sandra

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Planning is progressing

Yesterday was a day of doing, making phone calls, and delegating.  Karran, Bena and Mom went to buy the groceries for the dinner after Thursday's memorial service and with good fortune, they got everything they needed.  Sophie and Darwin went to Mom's house to meet the movers so that's now complete.  Robin washed out the garage and the sunroom in preparation for the cooking and set up the gas burner for cooking the puri.  I didn't really need to have the sunroom floor washed for tomorrow but I would have needed to do it anyway so I just added that to his list so that I don't have to do it next week (haha). 

I spent most of the day making or receiving phone calls but in the end, it was all very productive. Chris Singh has offered to organize the cooking crew.  Ram and Dolly Dyal have offered to organize the area where the memorial service will take place.  Sunita is arriving on Wednesday evening so one of us will pick her up.  The crew for cooking the puri at my home is arranged for Wednesday evening and the meal to feed them before they start cooking is also arranged.  It's difficult to know how many people will attend so I am preparing for 150.  Everyone says it's too much but that's what I am comfortable with so that's what it'll be.  

Aunties Maggie and Rosaline are coming on Thursday morning but since the pooja will be taking place at the same time, I've asked them to take a taxi to my home where they'll be staying for 10 days. They'll be bringing some veggies from Toronto on Thursday for next Sunday's 13 day pooja. I made all the necessary calls to confirm the people for Thursday's program, proof-read the document again and again and... (well you get the point) and emailed the program to Staples to be printed.  I got confirmation this morning that it's ready.

I went to bed last night thinking of what I am going to say at Dad's eulogy but nothing came into my head or more precisely, everything came into my head.  If I said everything I want to say, I'd have everyone there for a week at least so as with just about everything important that I do, I over prepare.  Last night Dad was talking to me in my dream and I woke up this morning knowing exactly what I am going to say.  I am not going to write anything down, so for those of you who have asked for the speech, there won't be a written one. I do hope however, to record it.

It's a quiet day at home today so I told mom to take the time to get some rest and same goes for Bena, Sophie and Karran. I came into work to do some work and think about something other than what I have been doing all of last week.  I also need to borrow a data projector, a screen, and a video camera from the library.  I was racking my brain to think of where I could purchase some take-out containers for giving away food at the end of the dinner and when I came to work today, the answer came.  I went to the Food Services department and bought some.  Easy. 

Now I just have to schedule some time for me to sleep. I was thinking that I could slot it in for next week - all week - but I don't think my boss (who has been extraordinarily supportive throughout the last few months) would go for that.  Maybe I could come to work and sleep at my desk.  Or under.  Or I could sleep with my eyes open.  I wonder if anyone would notice.  

I am taking this time to acknowledge the contributions from my family for all they have done in the last week to help out with everything.  I've been so immersed in Dad's illness for so long that I have just carried on doing and delegating and they have ALL been good at doing what they are asked to or offering to help others if needed.  That has made things easy for me because we have not had disagreements about how things should be done.  We are all being respectful of each other's feelings and contributions.  That's what we told Dad last Tuesday - that whatever disagreements we may have as kids over the years, we have always looked out for each other and we'll continue to look out for mom and each other.  That's a promise I hope to keep on keeping. 

sandra

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Planning and organizing

Yesterday I had my visit with the pandit  I have to say that I went there expecting the worst and what I got instead was a very humble pandit who was quite willing to listen and provide the necessary guidance. 

On Friday night before Karran went home, he talked to me about not making the pandit upset to the point where the pandit might decide that he was not going to do Dad's service on Thursday.  I didn't let that scare me.  I simply said that the pandit is not the only game in town and even if he was, this is not the only town and should the pandit decide not to do the service, I would fly one in from Toronto if necessary.  I said that where there is a will, there's Savitree and I will find it.  I called Prak in Toronto and asked him to make a few calls as a back-up plan so that if I did indeed need to bring another pandit, I would have the time to do so.

So this is how the meeting went: Mom and I got there at 10:58am for my 11am appointment.  Pandit opened the door and asked us in.  He sat at a table and I pulled up two chairs - one for me and one for Mom. I then set the stage for the discussion to follow. I told him that I was there for him to provide spiritual guidance and instructions about what has to be done for the various rituals in the next few days.  I said that I received a great deal of well-meaning but conflicting advice which I have chosen put aside.  I said that regardless of what the members of his church had to say about his competence as a pandit, he was the spiritual leader of the mandir, this was the mandir that Dad worshipped at and he at least made the effort to visit Dad once a few months ago when Dad was ill, which is more than I can say for the previous Guyanese pandit.

I then pulled out my notebook and told him that I would be documenting what he was going to tell me so that we were all clear about what had to be done and I would review the notes with him at the end of the meeting.  He explained what needs to be done for Thursday's memorial service at the mandir.  I wrote everything down and any questions I had about the purpose of the rituals, the time, the sequence of events and the necessary things we needed were answered very respectfully.  When he was done explaining, I had a list from the extensive research I had done previously about Guyanese style rituals which I referred to because he had not addressed some of those.  He reviewed the list and added a few other things to satisfy Guyanese rituals.  He also asked if I would leave the list for him to review for the rituals next Sunday (the 13th day work).    

He said that for Thursday afternoon's service, he would read a chapter from the Gita about the body dying but the soul living on. He thought it was an appropriate chapter and I agreed.  I told him that since I did not understand Sanskrit, and I was certain that most people who would be attending would be in the same situation, I wanted him to provide translations of the text as he was reading.  He looked very nervous and was apologetic that his English was not good but I ascertained from our conversation that it was good enough for me to understand what he was saying to me throughout the conversation, so he'd be fine to do the translation in whatever way he could.  It's the intent more than the actual words and I got the sense that he was willing to make the effort.  

When I was ready to leave, we talked a bit about my relationship with my Dad and about how I got my name. He said that going to the pandit to get a name for me was a good thing because chanting the name would bring positive energy.  He then said the relationship I had with my father is the one that most men would want with their sons so I was blessed that my parents both regarded me highly.  Now I know some of you are thinking that this was just flattery but he really didn't need to do that because our meeting was over and he had nothing to gain from flattery.  I felt that it was genuine and sincere.    

When Mom and I left and went outside I asked her how she thought the meeting went and she said that she thought he was scared of me. What's to be scared of?  I am really not a scary person - well not unless someone ticks me off - and it takes a lot to tick me off.  My kids know that when I am ranting, I'm not really angry. I just need to get things off my chest.  It's when I get really quiet and my enunciation is more pronounced that you're in trouble. By that time, I've done my homework and you're going to have to work extra hard to win an argument because I've got all the facts to back me up.

I went home with a list of things to do and as of today, I have multiple lists - for each day, each event, and each person.  We are still dealing with Mom's house. The movers are coming tomorrow to move Mom's things in storage.  We have a lot of shopping to do for the various rituals and the memorial service for Thursday.  I've been delegating like crazy so that I don't feel like a funnel.  Fortunately I had a conference call with my siblings at the beginning of March and we discussed several eventualities, which included Dad's passing while the house was being sold. It's again fortunate that we are at least all on the same page or the others are willing to take directions when necessary.    

Today was a busy day with sorting out who is doing what and when it's to be done.  I worked on Thursday's program that will be handed out to guests. I am not quite done but I'm liking what I have so far.  It really will be a celebration of Dad's life the way he lived it.  I also worked on the picture presentation and song that I will be playing to accompany it.  I  have been working on parts of it for months and I was able to be somewhat detached from it because I was working on one slide at a time adding additional pictures to the presentation as I saw fit.  Today I spent some time finalizing the timing of the presentation to the song.  Well, I started playing it for timing and I started crying - sobbing really. I have not been able to cry.  I even told myself that I had done my grieving for the past few years but I obviously didn't.  I am trying hard not to give in to the emotions because there is so much still left to do. I want everything to be perfect for Dad like I've always wanted for him so if it isn't, it's not because I didn't try. 

Bena offered to give me a pedicure this afternoon while I relaxed (she is an esthetitian) so I took her up on the offer except that I was working on my computer.  Still, it was nice to have someone take care of me for a change.  She is now giving Mom a pedicure and Sharm is coming over to get the same. What I need now is a nice long massage but that can wait for a week or so.  Auntie Maggie and Auntie Rosaline are coming on Thursday morning so they'll be in time for the memorial service and they'll be staying for about 10 days so Mom will appreciate the company.  I might even have time to steal away to get the massage.  

I am so sleep deprived that I think I am walking and sleeping for the last few days.  Last night I planned to go to bed early - like 10pm - but I ended up going at 1am instead.  That's been the pattern for the last week but who needs sleep anyway?  Is that over-rated or what?  Just kidding.  I'm trying to pay attention to getting sufficient rest because when I don't pay attention to my inner voice, especially when it tells me to slow down, I pay the price. 

When this is all over at the end of the week, I will get back into training for my CancerCare 1/2 marathon in June.  Only thing is that I have to present a paper at a conference in Phoenix the next day.  I was wondering what I would do with my time now that Dad is gone.  I don't think I'll have to worry...  

sandra