Content-type: text/html Ray Manning

Monday, June 3, 2012 10:00 PM

Memorial Day and Beyond

By Tuesday and Wednesday of the week I am already thinking about the four day Memorial day weekend. I make a presentation on Wednesday morning that runs long and so we schedule a follow-up for Thursday morning. Needless to say I have a great workout with slightly heavier weights on Wednesday after work.

Thursday is a good day at work. I make a decent presentation and we get past a major hurdle in our effort. We get two thigns to look into from the presentation and I just put my head down and by the end of the day both of these things are almost finished. With the productive day I head for home and get out walking before watching the Los Angeles Kings' playoff win.

Friday starts with a mountain bicycle ride almost to the pier. I am stopped short of the pier by police action where I think they may have found a dead body near the pier and have closed off the bicycle trail. Thus I turn around a bit short of the pier and head for home. After a shower I go take a blood test (for scientific purposes where I am paid to answer a survey and give them some blood), get some books from the library, and do some grocery shopping. After lunch Person Ti_Ca and I go shopping for supplies for upcoming trips. By 3:30 pm I am tired and manage to get down for about a one hour nap. I have another adoptions teleconference and I don't like the direction that the project is headed. I voice my opinion and then get behind the decisions that are made. A number of us go back and forth about going out clubbing on Friday night but people start dropping out. So I just relax with one of the books from the library and enjoy the solitude.

Saturday starts with a wild wet and drying and raining again qualifying session from Monaco. My favorite driver ends up 3rd, but it is very wild and times and positions are rapidly fluctuating by the second. I get out for a mountain bicycle ride past the pier and turn around and head for home. I catch up to a co-workers and his friend and when they pull off at a nature reserve to take a break I join them. Soon I see former councilperson Rae Gabelich walking along the trail and since she knows me, I drag her over and the four of us have an interesting discussion about Long Beach, graffiti, retirement, and other things. Former councilperson Gabelich is "one of the good people" in government and it was a shame that she termed out. When I get home I edge and mow the lawn, get a quick shower, and get the World Rally Car washed. As it is being dried a guy comes over and wants to talk about the World Rally Car and I can just say, "It is so much fun. It is fast. It is so much fun". I tell him that it is 10 years old and don't know the price of new ones, so he leaves me alone. After a brief stop at the grocery store and work on some summary finances and computer backup and maintenance. Late on Saturday Person Ti_Ca and I have dinner and everything is fine. When we return home we get into argument because I am not joining Person Ti_Ca in Cambodia. I'm confused! At first I HAD to go, then I shouldn't go, then I wasn't allowed to go, and now I MUST go. By now ticket prices are high and we stop arguing and I just go off to bed to read and sleep.

Sunday starts with the beginning of the F1 race from Monaco and then the long road bicycle ride with Derrick. We run into Terry also but he gets dropped because he's a bit older and kinda slow. But we catch up to him on the turnaround and ride together again for a bit. When I get home I watch the rest of the F1 race and then fast forward through much of the Indy 500 and catch the critical moments. Later Person Ti_Ca is supposed to be at the airport at 9 pm to check-in for his flight to Cambodia. At 9:30 pm there are still people arriving at my house to pick him up, pack up a ton of stuff, and take him to the airport. I sure hope the flight is on Khmer time.

On Memorial day I get out for a mountain bicycle ride past the pier and back. There are many riders and groups of riders on today's ride. But it takes me 10 miles before I find my legs (following Friday, Saturday, and Sunday rides). I run an errand or two and feed and water the roses and then I start the official planning for "one year to retirement" as I'm now assuming that 1 June 2014 will be when I will retire from Northrop Grumman building satellites and move along to the next phase of my life. I spend a lot of Memorial Day itself just cleaning the house but also thinking about retirement and the things that I will be doing at that time.

Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thurday are spent packing up my belongings to a new office, working on a model/simulation unfication plan with another organization, and trying to write usefull tools to help report results. On Wednesday night on the ride home I see a For sale sign on the block and realize as I get closer to home that it is infront of my neighbors' house. I wonder what is going on since they have been away on vacation for a while. On Wednesday I get in a good workout with the weights and finally wax the rims of the World Rally car. And later catch the Red Wings lose their 7 game Stanley Cup playoff series. On Thursday I'm having a bad day though I make a lot of model unification progress at work. When I return home I make travel reservations for summer travel, work on websites, and talk with people on facebook just because I am not feeling well mentally and have not felt well for a long time. Don't get me wrong - my life is going very well right now. But for a few months I have not felt well mentally and emotionally and everytime that I have tried to talk with Person Ti_Ca about it he has found a trivial excuse to not listen to me and discuss it with me.

On Friday I move to my new office and note that I have generic, old furniture rather than the nicer, wood furniture that a person in my position should have. But I hook up my computer and phone myself (since I get in early and don't want to wait for IT people to come strolling in in a few hours), and I'm off and running. I make some good progress at work until the end of the day when people ask me to do some extra work (that is outside my current responsibilities). I tell them that I will try in the last four days that I am here before my vacation but I wonder why they didn't ask me at the beginning of the week rather than on the last day. I get home and have a great session with the weights, mow the lawn, clean the roses, trim some bushes, and then relax with a warm shower. I try to do some web programming but it doesn't quite bear fruit and soon I'm falling asleep with the book on my lap.

After reviewing MotoGP and underclass qualifying at Mujello, Italy, I start north on the Los Angeles river on the bicycle to the Whitter Narrows dam. I run into Terry and convince him to come and ride with me. He stops to rest short of the dam but I continue on, climb up the dam, and continue back to meet back up with Terry. We have a good ride together until he stops where his car is parked. I continue on and hold on to some riders who are going 25 mph until my old Ciocc road bicycle let's out a loud screech from the rear and I slow down a bit to debug. But I continue on at a reduced pace and wonder what is going on with my bicycle. I get down to the beach and turn around and make it home for about 50 miles today. But the loud screech, which happened a few months before, bothers me. Ater a shower and 10 minutes of laying on the bed I get a haircut, return library books, pick up a new book, and do some grocery shopping. Though I've ridden 50 hard miles, I'm restless and get down on my hands and knees and clean both bathroom floors before watching the Los Angeles Kings' playoff game. The Kings lose at that is the end of the day.

Sunday starts with the MotoGP motorcycle roadrace from Mugello, Italy where my favorite rider is pushed off the road into the barriers on the first lap. At the end of the race I start out on the mountain bicycle past the pier. I run into Terry and his brother and we talk for a few minutes before I climbs some hills and surge for home. I'm wiped out! I relax in the afternoon and wait for the Kings' game two against the Blackhawks in the western conference finals. When i have a few minutes I walk next door to the open house and talk with the realtor about El Salvador and Guatemala and how I will miss the neighbors because, though I didn't get to know them as well as I should have, they are are great people. During the afternoon there are many messages with people who were expected to be in Thailand and Myanmar and this trip is looking to be a disaster. But I have the mindset that I am going to go enjoy myself at these countries and try my best to to drink lots of water and stay cool in the heat.

On Monday at work there is an incident with a co-worker (who has had incidents before) and I just ignore it, put my head down and work on thigns that I should not work on, and help some people out (who needed help but who I was told to not help). At least these people that I helped out are now my friends if the specified co-worker is not. By MOnday night I am mentally wiped out and don't get in any workout at all - a rare day without a workout.