Really 2020?? It gets worse??

Trying to power through this whole thing by studying for my IFR, it might be the slow road since I’m older and the practical is on ILS/DME runways with the last thing being GPS approaches.  I have decent hand/eye, not just for my age.  We’ve been on the SIM, yesterday we headed out in the retractable gear to finally get my complex rating.  That part of my day was great, the only person I’ve seen outside of family has been my CFI and my friend Jeff.

Last week we went for latte’s and a de-brief and got booted from a bench we were sitting on either side of with NO ONE around.  The security guard came up and treated us like we were spreading the virus.  The new California, you can do no right.  This Memorial Day weekend is going to be a nightmare, everyone’s just so over it they’re all going to cluster together in revolt – defeating the whole purpose of why we had to shut down in the first place.

That’s not what I’m bummed about though…I got blind sighted (A few times last week)  🙁  My friend and former co-worker Jeff was diagnosed with stage 4 pancreatic cancer.  He’s been like an uncle to my kids, we call each other bro & sis, we’re family.  We worked at the golf course together, he came to the boys graduations and engagement party.  He was here when my son announced he was engaged, got my youngest his first job, so many things I’m blanking out on in my utter shock/horror.

Before I flew down to L.A.  a few weeks ago he stopped by the house with some clubs for my son.  The plan before this lockdown was that my son was going to come out with his roommate for Spring Break, then my son was going to apprentice with him at a club building, golf repair business and try to set up his own shop in Las Cruces.  Of course that all went out the window and the shop here closed.  When it re-opened for delivery only, Jeff brought the clubs over and gave him this one putter shaft.  He was the first person we’d seen outside of quarantine.  I took off to my mom’s the next day.

As he left the house he saw this silver boat he gave me when I took his family sailing, I said “Of course, front and center on display!”  I put it on this shelf when you walk in the front door.  That was only a few weeks ago 🙁

As I was flying yesterday, he called and left a message that sounded somber.  I called my H, asking what did my youngest Frank do to piss off Jeff?  Did he owe money?  Was he being a pain in the ass asking for too many favors?  Jeff called me back and told me the horrific news. He thought it was COVID and when in for testing, then got a negative result and thought it was stress.  His symptoms were pretty bad so they kept testing until he got the bad news.

I told him I was totally there for him, for rides or whatever he and his W need.  I didn’t even ask what stage he was at, I was trying not to fall apart on the phone for him.  Then a few hours later his W posted his official diagnosis on FB and we’re all beyond devastated 🙁 .

I just want to go up to Keplers (where he works) and hug everyone there…but this fucking COVID thing makes that fucking impossible.  We all worked together for years, they’ve all helped me raise my boys and were there from the beginning with Frank.  When Frank wasn’t speaking, and was miss-diagnosed, at first I started going to the parent support groups and coffee with the other moms.  It was so frigg’in depressing, so I’d go hit balls at the driving range.  One of the guys up at the range, Rob, gave him a club and said, “There’s nothing wrong with this kid, he’s really smart!”  So started my golf denial and Frank’s love of golf.

I could write a book about all of this, such a hard but great time in my life when the PTA mom’s never had anything to do with me or Frank.  It was the guys up at the golf course who helped me raise my boys…and Jeff is still a full on participant in our lives.  Frank’s now 24 (He’s deaf BTW, if whoever is reading this has never read my blog).

I’m devastated 🙁  They’re doing testing here now for COVID but you have to sign up for contact tracing, which doesn’t thrill me having the gov’t know my every move.  Like an alert if I’m sitting on a bench instead of a mall cop.  If I’m going to be any help with rides or whatever they need, I better get tested so I can  at least hug him.



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