29 September 2020

7K run in pouring rain

This is what I get for being lazy for a week. Had to put in a run today and I still have another 5K to go tomorrow – the last day of the month – to meet my this month’s target. It was raining and a little cold (58 deg F). Nobody was there in the trail. There is a different beauty to a desolate trail in the forests with the constant pitter patter noise of the rain. There were two deer that was looking for food and did not even budge as I ran past them within a couple of feet.

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27 September 2020

One more small step for a man…

Thanks to Nikita’s tip, I finally figured out how to get on the board and stay there for a few seconds. Of course, it is not pretty as I flail my arms like a drunken sailor to not fall overboard… and my left foot is clearly on the edge which is making the board turn left constantly… but at least, I stayed on.

By the way, Nikita’s tip was “You are overthinking this, Dad. Just get up.” Amazingly enough, it worked!!!

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27 September 2020

From the bartender’s corner – Barbed Wire

Five years back, I had made this drink for the first time. The ingredients are such that they leave a fairly pronounced length and after taste. Tried it again today. Some bartender’s suggest sherry instead of raspberry liqueur.

This would be 3 ounces of vodka with half a teaspoon each of absinthe, sweet vermouth and Chambord raspberry liqueur. It is best to shake it with chipped (or crushed) ice instead of ice cubes. Cooler and little more dilution brings the ingredients to the palette better.

27 September 2020

That occasional moment of mirth

As listless as his life has become, we have been able to get his pain level down with all sorts of life support around him. That includes dialysis – which means he has to be heaved off to the dialysis center three times a week and then four hours later brought back. There is a fairly large support system of four people my brother has set up for him. That includes domestic help at home to give mom some respite, a couple of able bodied people to lift him and get him in the car and all that…

On his side, he is mostly sleeping and has gone very quiet. Does not talk as much and in those days when there is a 2-day gap between dialysis, he gets very fidgety and restless. But does not complain of any pain. And then, once in a while, when he gets a bout of normalcy, he gets stressed realizing all the support system set up around him. His biggest fear is that all that expenses will dry all our money dry and mom will not be able to buy food. Needless to say, he has no idea how much money he has or how much a kilogram of potato costs for that matter.

My brother is once again at this bedside this weekend. I look forward to that since that means I can see my dad thru Whatsapp video. He clearly looks like a much-stricken patient. The most painful part for me is when he keeps asking me when will I come to see him. Unlike a month back, he has lost his ability to understand the pandemic and that flights are not possible right now.

In the middle of all that, we did see a streak of his old humor though.

At one point, he asked me what was I up to. This was around 10 at night for me.

“Tomakey taaka pathabaar byabastha korchhi”.
(“Oh! I am fixing the system to send you money.”)

He knew immediately that I was making fun of him. You can see him laughing in the bottom left screen shot. After a good laugh, he sobered down for a second and then with that familiar mischievous countenance (see bottom right picture) shot his comeback..

“Byabastha-ta a-byabastha korle ki korey?”.
(“How did you break the system to begin with?”)

Even my brother was laughing so loud that he could not hold up the phone for me any more!!

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26 September 2020

Coffee art

One advantage of the virus pandemic is that I have been trying out a lot of coffee shops in the next 20 miles from our house. Most are owned by individual families. They let me sit inside or outside. (Starbucks is allowing us to sit outside now but not inside yet). The coffee is usually a little costlier and they take more time than Starbucks to prepare it. But the output, for some reason, I am finding to be far more enjoyable.

This is my cappuccino from this morning. He took a lot of pains to create the art. I messed it up with one long sip 🙂

26 September 2020

Paid the penalty… with a 10 mile run

This week, I had not run even one single morning. There were too many breakfast meetings and then a couple of days, I was just lazy to get out in the rains. This morning, it appeared that I needed to post 36K in 5 days to keep up with my goal of 110K this month.

Gave it a shot and pulled in a 10 mile – 16K run in 1 hour and 52 minutes. Ran into Vijay Nagarajan (colleague from prior job) and Debjyoti, Rituparna and their daughter Tania in the trail. Did not get a chance to chat much since I was trying to get in as many miles as I could.

4 more days and still 20K to go. Tomorrow is ruled out (legs are too sore). Will be an interesting finish to the month…

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22 September 2020

Alpharetta downtown and JayJay

Went out late to Alpharetta downtown. JayJay was virtually begging to take him. Which he did. He sat there the whole time and made absolutely no noise. Totally ignored the other dogs that barked at him and wanted to make friends with him. All he did was kept looking at people and tried to hear intently why they were saying!!