Category Archives: Relationships

I Alone | Līve

Nostalgia

Twenty years ago (circa 1997), Number One Son and I went to a Līve concert at the Cynthia Woods Mitchel Pavilion. Number One Son was 14. The forecast was for rain. Our seats were in the uncovered part of the Pavilion. We brought rain ponchos and a large umbrella. We needed them. We sat in a torrential rain throughout the concert.

The Mrs had been diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis the year before. My life, all of our lives, were changing in unpredictable ways. The Mrs was going downhill and I was grieving the loss of her quality of life, our quality of life. The medical bills and hospitalizations were taking a toll. Little did I know that it would get worse.

We sat in the pouring rain listing to Līve blast out their songs. I have very fond memories of that concert. I bought two of their albums, Throwing Copper and Secret Samadhi  (I think I even bought Secret Samadhi at the concert). I used to listen to those albums in the CD player of the Ford Windstar we owned at the time. Perfect music for grieving. I actually own a large collection of CDs that I no longer listen to because we have switched to iTunes. I should probably invest in an external CD drive for my MacBook and begin ripping my old CDs to iTunes, but have avoided doing so.

I heard I Alone earlier this evening in the playlist of a local sporting goods store’s PA system. It brought all those memories back with a vengeance. Music has a way of doing that for me.

Epilogue (Twenty years later …)

The Mrs and I have been married forty-one years. She still battles MS and the diabetes she developed as a result of massive dosage steroid treatments she has received over the years. Twenty years of MS have eaten up all of our finances … and continue to do so. If you and your family are in good health you have no idea how fortunate you are. If you are battling a life altering illness, you know what we have been going through.

I may go dig out my Līve CDs and put them in my car to listen to. I still have grieving to do …

The waiting …

I have been dealing with a variety of issues over the past year and a half that have been stressful, to say the least. My life has been plagued with, let us say … uncertainty. I used to say it was like being on a roller coaster, but now I think it is becoming more like a ride on the Vomit Comet.

To quote Arlo Guthrie (totally out of context) … “you may know somebody in a similar situation or you may be in a similar situation, and if you’re in a situation like that, there’s only one thing you can do … sing it the next time it comes around on the guitar …”

Thunderstorms

This is another Father’s Day tribute to Bob (aka Dad).

From Welcome to the Future …

Despite the fact that my parents love for me caused them to be overly protective, my dad did something equally amazing for me. I have always loved thunderstorms. I love the lightning and I love the thunder. I think that thunderstorms are one of the most exhilarating of all natural phenomenon. There is a reason for this. My dad grew up in an orphanage. It was not uncommon at the time for single mothers who could not care for their children to abandon them at an orphanage. Summertime in Florida produces severe afternoon thunderstorms. The nuns at the orphanage were afraid that lightening would hit the building and set fire to it. Rather than face the possibility of an orphanage full of trapped children burning to the ground, whenever a thunderstorm approached, the nuns would make the children go outside and lie facedown in the grass until the storm passed. Needless to say, my dad was terrified of thunderstorms; shaking, vomiting, fetal position terrified of thunderstorms. Dad swore to himself that I was never going to be afraid of lightning and thunder like he was. From my earliest days my dad would pick me up and bounce me on his knee during storms. “See the lightning,” he would say, “now wait, here it comes … BADDA BOOM.” I would giggle and laugh. He showed no fear, why should I. Of course, I remember none of this. I was too young. But I do know that I love lightning and thunder. Whenever my dad told this story he would add one more thing … by making sure that I was never afraid of thunderstorms he had cured his own fear too.

  
Trying to proof-read the above is difficult through tear filled eyes. If there are typos, cut me some slack.

 Happy Father’s Day to all the fathers out there and to their children!

Bob

Robert Francis (Bob) Bergman 

Circa mid 1970s

[Click the images to zoom to full size]


YOKS (Ye Olde Kid Sister) posted the photo above of our Dad to Facebook today.

I took that photo during my “Black & White” photography period. My camera bag is prominently visible in the foreground. This is a classic Bob photo – beer in hand. Note the old school disposable “pop top” beer can and Bob’s signature white cowboy hat.

Below is another picture I took on a different fishing trip. This is actually a cropped digital image of a framed picture I have hanging on my staircase. It is my favorite photo of Dad.


 

Bob loved to fish and I frequently went along with him always getting on the road before sunrise. I was heavily into photography in the 70s and would go “fishing” with him just to get out and away from everything and to spend time alone with him. I am not sure exactly when these pictures were taken – I could probably find the negatives and give you the exact dates, but that would be irrelevant – mid 1970s is close enough. 

I put “fishing” in quotes because I mostly went for the solitude, sandwiches, beer, and photography. Fishing was very “zen” for Bob. Peace, quiet, solitude … and beer. Bob loved beer. Fishing wasn’t so much about catching fish as it was the entire experience. Sure he loved actually catching fish, but not catching fish was OK too. How does that old saying go … “the worst day fishing is better than the best day of work.”

Our “worst day of fishing” was the time we were out in Florida Keys in a rented boat and sheared the propeller shear pin on a sand shoal – with no extra shear pins. After several hours of trying to row back to shore with the single oar we had – including realizing we had snagged the line of a lobster/crab pot on the outboard motor, thus going nowhere – Bob decided to fashion a shear pin out of a heavy gauge fish hook. That did the trick and we limped back to the marina. Speaking of “lobsters” I was wearing shorts, no shirt, and no hat. Although by some miracle I did not blister, I was “cooked lobster red” for many days afterwards. Still better than “the best day of work.”

Bob would have loved this song …

Bob is no longer with us. Time may heal all wounds, but we still miss him.

Bob, wherever you are, this one’s for you …


 

Happy Father’s Day

Death in Paradise

My newest diversion … watching Death in Paradise on NETFLIX. British TV. Murder mystery. Crime solving. Humor.

A British inspector is transferred to Saint-Marie’s police department, but he hates the sun, sea, and sand. The series follow his investigations into murders on the island.

Actually the reviews below aren’t that favorable and include spoilers … but I am only on the second episode and I am enjoying it so far. I guess all shows eventually run their course.

Watch it if you can … (or not)

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Death_in_Paradise_(TV_series)

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1888075/

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b01pvmf6