Reality Bites…Tastes Like Chicken

Yesterday was a day that started out all about me, me, me and ended up with me feeling a whole lot different at the end of the day.

Here is what happened.

GGJ was feeling grumpy. I admit it. My deck is in full flower bloom and the weather is finally hot and…. I am working. A lot. I am reading a new Daniel Silva book and haven’t had a chance to finish it. That alone is enough to put the grump on.

I was already worried about a friend. One of my dearest friends on the planet woke up a few days ago with double vision. As an adult, there are no good reasons for this. There are however a bunch of really bad ones.  So, it’s time for testing and waiting and more testing and waiting.

I had a full book of patients. About half-way through the day I met a lovely man in his late 60’s. Picture a tan golfer type guy. The first thing he said to me was, “I am having a few memory problems.”

I said, “That is okay. I went to the grocery store the other day for one ingredient that I needed to make a special recipe of cookies. Guess what I did?” He said, “Buy everything except that one ingredient?” I said, “Yep, no sour cream. There are no cookies in my house.” And we both laughed.

We were able to do the exam.  The brain is a weird thing. Apparently it has no problem remembering letters… F..Z..B..D..E.

But, it has problems remembering recent events like the British Open or messes up your ability to say what you are thinking. We were talking about stuff and all of a sudden he just couldn’t finish his sentence. I could see in his eyes that he knew what he was trying to say but just couldn’t say it. I told him it was all okay, that we were doing fine. And we were. We got the exam finished and he asked me to write a little note to his wife about the results and if he needed new glasses. I did.

As he was leaving we were talking about traveling and eating- two of my favorite things. He was telling me about loving white peaches from California. I said, “Ooh, you can use white peaches to make a Bellini- white peaches simple syrup and champagne.” He said, “Jill, I have been sober for 30 years.” I made a screeching of the tires sound and said, “Scratch that last part, okay?”  We both laughed again. We shook hands and went our separate ways.

Towards the end of the day my office manager came into my office and asked me if I could squeeze in another appointment for a patient who needed to get in TODAY. I looked at my schedule (it was full) and said, “Pick out a spot. Tell them they might have to wait a bit.”

So I busted my hump and gave it my all. The work-in patient had to wait for 15 minutes. As he entered my office I could tell by his demeanor that he was miffed. The first thing he said to me was, “How much is this going to cost me?” I told him. (Now, I was feeling miffed.)

We conducted the exam. It went fine. After our exam was finished he joined his wife in the waiting area. Ah-ha! Now I get it (and the office manager confirmed it.)

The wife was the one who called and made the appointment. She was the one who said he had to get in TODAY. To her, it was an immediate need. She probably did not tell him we were working him in. To him, we were 15 minutes late and he was spending his money. Neither one of which was on his list to do that day.

Perception. It is all about perception.

Years ago, I was at a health fair. I was selling a nutritional supplement and had high hopes. I was expecting a large turn-out. My booth was next to a therapist who does biofeedback.  She was an interesting and insightful person. She could tell I was disappointed by the lack of attendance. She said, “You are disappointed because reality isn’t meeting your expectation.”

Boy howdy, she nailed it.

Think about it. Most of the times when I get bent out of joint it is because reality isn’t meeting my expectation. What is that old saying/movie/soundtrack? Reality bites??

At the end of the day I finally caught up. Another doctor I work with came into my office and said, “You sure looked busy today.” This is a nice way of saying it looked like I was running around like a chicken with my head cut off. I told her about my day. We had a nice talk. She also has had a few reality checks lately. She has a friend who is going through a breast cancer scare and other friends who are going through some tough times. We decided in the grand scheme of things we are doing fine, just fine.

Here is the deal.

I was physically, mentally and emotionally able to work my butt off. I did not like it, but I was able to do it. That is a great thing.

My body and mind are intact. That is not something to take for granted. It can be worse. A lot worse.

I made it home last night and went to bed early. I woke up today refreshed and ready to write a little story and head back to work.

I don’t know what will happen today. That is ok. I can handle it.

Fake Air, Tight Butts & The Power of Love

GGJ and Cousin Vodka
GGJ and Cousin Vodka

I just returned from my latest adventure.

I went to Las Vegas to help a gorgeous young lady turn 21. Yep, 21 in Las Vegas. We were a motley crew. Two sweet young things (SYT 1 and SYT 2), The Mommas, GGJ, and an Aunt and an Uncle hereby known as Cousin Vodka and Cousin Whiskey.

It was a loose arrangement and for a group that large amazingly flexible. Fun was had by all. Along the way a bunch of stuff happened. We arrived at different times and by various routes. It was like we were planning a caper and had to make sure our true identities could not be traced.

We stayed at the The Flamingo which is a great central location and the price is right if you are planning on spending your money on gambling and drinking and shows. No time for relaxation babies, this was a whirlwind. We upgraded to a Go-Go Room and it was worth it.

Immediately upon arrival we played some slots. I became very fond of a ‘Spartacus’ machine and we spent a lot of time together. Picture a heavily muscled man wearing armor carrying a shield (WE ARE SPARTANS!) whirling around on your screen… Nice!

Over the next 2.5 days I was in a bunch of casinos. Some nicer than others. What was very striking was the difference in air. As in, fake air. I would love to get a behind the scenes tour (hint, hint Vegas people) of how they go about blending and concocting the fake air. Cousin Vodka was with me most of the time and we both liked the air at the Palazzo the best. It reminded us both of a Mediterranean breeze. Very calming and relaxing.

Surprisingly, the air at the Quad was very good as well. Surprising because it is not as upscale as the Palazzo. The Quad air smells like a very clean attractive man. We really liked it.

We spent quite a bit of time at Jimmy Buffet’s Margaritaville Casino and bar… of course that air is fantastic! Hints of coconut, salt….why sure, I’d love a Margarita! Why not?

The air at the Bellagio is really good too. We took big hits of air….inhale, exhale… the air smells….expensive… la-di-da. Enjoy it while you can.

The last night we were there we went to see The Thunder from Down Under at the Excalibur. My sister wanted to see the show years ago and I said no, which was a huge mistake. I already told her that on our next trip to Vegas we will go and it will be my treat. It is a super fun show and it should not be missed if you are with a bunch of girls and want to have fun. (Cousin Whiskey didn’t care and did a little gaming while we were at the show.)

The show itself is fun. There is a little something for everyone and it was interesting that we all liked different men the best. Loved the fire man! Ooh-la-la.

At the end of the show you can go up for a picture with the guys. Cousin Vodka and I were at the end of the line and the fire man was giving the instructions of how the picture thing works… we were listening to that Australian accent and gazing at his beautiful body… then we were onstage waiting for our picture to be taken. Cousin Vodka said, “I missed about half of what he said because I was mesmerized by his accent.” Then she poked the ring leader in one of his pectoral muscles with her long pink fingernail and said, “Dang, you sure were a surprise!” For the first time all night, he was speechless. We then climbed upon some super-hot Thunder man laps and had our photo taken. At the end another Thunder guy takes the time to give you some hugs and skin on skin time as you exit the stage. Brilliant! Simply brilliant… everyone feels loved and cared for…plus you get a real photo as well as an emailed photo.

Memories….light the corner of my mind…misty water colored memories. (Cue the music.)

Cousin Vodka had some words of wisdom for the SYT’s. After the show SYT 1 told Cousin Vodka that the long haired hot Thunder man told her he liked how her dress looked on her. Cousin Vodka said, “Did you tell him it would look better on his bedroom floor?” Zinger. Bow-chic-a-bow-bow.

This trip restored my faith in humanity. What????? In Vegas????

GGJ, are you still totally wasted?

Here’s the deal. You would think that it was a recipe for disaster. I kept waiting for the SYT’s to ditch us and go get shit faced and/or need money. It didn’t happen. (Actually, maybe it did happen but I wouldn’t know because I skipped dinner one night and had Corona Lights instead and I was the one that had to go home early.)

The Mommas were super cool too. I saw with my own eyes one of the mommas supply a 100$ bill for two lemon drop shots for the SYT’s and she didn’t even flinch (too much.) They let the little birdies fly. They must have done a good job of parenting because they are fine, just fine.

Cousin Whiskey was instrumental in teaching the SYT’s the ways of the blackjack table and 3 am breakfasts. I hadn’t played for a long time and made some mistakes on the blackjack table. Thanks, Cousin Whiskey for helping me figure it out and sorry we lost …it was fun anyway and those 200$ worth of “free” drinks were tasty. Also, he was good at getting us in cabs and from point A to point B and is a very good tipper. Yay. Love, love, love Cousin Whiskey.

Last but not least I must give some proper love to the head momma (HCH = head cat herder) for organizing the trip. It’s not easy to bring together a bunch of unusual suspects and have it seem like an effortless, spontaneous event. I know that was not the case and she pulled it off. Masterful in every way.

There was a lot of activity, and it was ok to either participate or not. There was no pressure. It was ok to say yes, and it was ok to say no. It was a beautiful thing.

What makes it all work?

The power of love is what makes it work.

Make new friends, but keep the old…. One is Silver and the other Gold.

We were Gold all the way!

Since I got back last night, it would seem like there is some trouble in the world. I think for the right price I could get the motley crew together for a “brain trust” and we could straighten things out. Just let me know.