Content-type: text/html Ray Manning

Wednesday, March 24, 2004 8:00 AM

The March Break-Up

On Wednesday and Thursday and Friday Person N_V and I "walk on eggshells" around each other as we discuss things. Some of the conversations are very good and deep and emotional, but we are both trying to maintain "the high road" here.

On Friday afternoon I leave work a bit early to lift weights, mow the lawn, and do the laundry. Then I do some shopping and relax for the evening. Person N_V heads out with friends and eventually makes it home near 1 am.

I'm up early on Saturday to go walking, watch the Malaysian Grand Prix qualifying, go for a bicycle ride, and paint the ceiling of the hallway. Afterwards Person N_V and I take a nap and have more good discussions and "feeling sharing". After the nap I get in a good session with the weights before taking a shower and heading for a club. Person J_VKPI cannot make it (after flip-flopping about 5 times with 5 phone calls). I meet up with Brandon who is visiting from New York as well as Person N_V who has met up with his friends for dinner.

It is an entertaining evening at the club as offers are made and rejected, the music is decent, and a number of acquaintances are present. Person Dao is there and we speak a number of times during the evening. I can see Person Dao looking me over because he hasn't seen me in a while with bigger arms, bigger shoulders, and a smaller waist. Because Brandon is flying back to New York on Sunday morning from Long Beach Airport, we transfer his luggage from his friend's car to mine so that Brandon can sleep on my couch. We stay late tonight as Brandon wants to get in every bit of fun possible. We leave and rush home and I'm laying down for sleep near 3:15 am on Sunday morning. I'm fast asleep when Person N_V comes home at 4:15 - he had to transfer cars and stuff with his friend after leaving the club. Person N_V and I talk for a while before we both pass out.

The alarm goes at 6:01 am as Brandon has to be to the airport for a 7:30 am flight. Thus after two hours of sleep I do some shopping for the newspaper and groceries, watch the Malaysian Grand Prix, and head off for a bicycle ride. When I return from the ride Person N_V has left to have lunch with friends. When I call Person N_V to see where he is, and after we've had a bit of a discussion, I feel the tears welling up in my throat and I'm barely able to choke out, "I have to go...", sniffle, "...because I can't...", sniffle, "talk...anymore." And I hang up the phone. But the tears do not overwhelm me.

In the early afternoon I go walking with Person U_T and we talk about relationships and Buddhism and stuff. It is an enlightening conversation. Later I go walking for 40 minutes and lift weights for the areas near the lower back and abdominals. I finish off my weekend with piles and piles of chocolate chip cookies before heading for bed just after 8 pm - this being a day of operation on about two hours of sleep. Person N_V comes home from his day and he's tired too. So we read in bed until just after 9 pm at which time the lights go out and highly-desired sleep comes fast and deep.

Monday sees a good morning walk/run and a good session with the weights (with a fairly productive work day at Northrop Grumman sandwiched between the two). The ResourceScout meeting is okay even if we haven't had a positive response from Los Angeles county in the past week. We decide to continue the push into other counties within the state of California.

When I get home from the ResourceScout meeting near 9:30 pm I head directly for bed. Person N_V joins me shortly thereafter and we read together. I finally finish the fiction book about cryptography and the NSA called "Digital Fortress". I enjoyed it. When the lights go out Person N_V have a good outpouring session before we both drift off to sleep.

Continuing the final March push, I ride the bicycle to Northrop Grumman. Along the way I see a black blob in the road as I ride through Gardena. I fear what it is and my worst nightmare is confirmed: it is a dead black dog - probably a labrador retriever. The first thought to enter my mind is "Poor Nopey". But then I start thinking about the family that owns this dog and how Mom and Dad are going to have to explain to the kids that Smokey (aka the dead black dog) isn't going to be coming home anymore. I put the thought out of my mind with a huge sprint to just barely beat a traffic light going red.