Surprise!

Well that was wonderful!

We just got a surprise visit from Bellana! She made the three hour drive here from school. Apparently she and two friends were after cake. A specific, magical cake… I guess.

What a great surprise!

Bloody Nostalgia

How’s that for a provocative title?

Get ready to be let down.

It’s funny what stays with you.

I had acne when I was in high school so out of fear of cutting my face to ribbons I bought an electric razor. I did know how to shave for real though. My father taught me how. I don’t remember anything he said to me that day, but I clearly remember that my Uncle Johnny (Dad’s brother) was there and he made one shaving suggestion. He said to be careful when you shave above your lip because if you cut yourself right under your nose you will bleed like crazy and it just won’t stop.

Like I said, I don’t know why I remember that comment from my uncle so clearly, but guess what I thought of this morning while shaving… just as I cut myself under my nose.

Gore, babie. Uncle Johnny called it.

Worst Nightmare Ever

I had a nightmare last night and it was awful.

Yesterday was my grandmother’s 114 birthday. She passed away over 20 years ago. She was the nicest, sweetest, kindest person I’ve ever known. Everyone has that person that makes them think, that person is a saint. She’s that person for me. My Nana was a saint.

And last night I had a nightmare about her.

I was laying in bed but it wasn’t my bed. I was sleeping on my side. I woke up hearing a voice. It was Nana’s voice. It was coming from right behind me, over my shoulder. She whispered my name a couple of times and a few other things that I couldn’t make out and it terrified me beyond my ability to describe.

There was a ghost right behind me, talking to me. I wanted to roll over and see her but I was frozen. I couldn’t roll over but I was shaking in fear. I had to force myself awake. I couldn’t do it at first, but eventually I was able to, and I put an end to the awful experience.

What kind of an asshole has a nightmare about their saint of a grandmother on her birthday.

I suck. I suck more than any human (except trump) has ever sucked before.

10 Years Ago Today

10 years ago today we bought a house. September 29, 2010 was closing and moving day. Right smack dab in the middle of the biggest economic down turn since The Great Depression we did our part to help our nation recover by sinking great big gobs of money into our home. With the exception of our wedding day, it was the biggest thing I’ve ever been a part of.

10 years ago today, this place was a house. Today it’s a home. Thanks to the friggin coronavirus, it’s also two offices and a couple of classrooms, but mostly it’s a home. Our home. I love it.

photo
photo

Hair During Quarantine

Twice since the lock down started my beautiful wife has cut my hair. Today, for the first time, she cut her own hair. She found a how-to video on youtube and this morning she went for it…

…and it looks GREAT! She’s not all that happy with it, but I think she looks fantastic. I am really impressed. There is literally nothing she can’t do.

Sad Note

I wasn’t going to let myself get caught up in September 11th this year. I was just going to focus on the present and let it go. Then I totally failed at that and went through all of my previous posts on September 11ths over the years.

Two years ago I wrote a big long entry on everything I did that day. I closed it with a little postscript:

My parents had Kennedy. Their parents had Pearl Harbor. My only hope now is that my step kids never get an event of their own.

Well, so much for that. The kids have a thing of their own now. Oh, and our Federal government knew it was going to be horrible and decided to ignore it. 192,000 corpses, all laying at the cheeto dictator’s feet.

Oh, That’s Just Ducky, Part II

On the last day before the start of the school year, earlier today they cancelled all sports because a bunch of student athletes caught the ‘rona.

Tonight they cancelled all in person classes for the first week. My step son will have his first day of school in his room at our house.

I want very much for him to have a normal senior year, but selfishly I am so friggin’ relieved. We haven’t even made it to the first day and already the virus has started spreading through the student population and it’s already bad enough to send everyone home for a while at least.

Finally, a smart move on the school district’s part. Finally.

Addendum: He’s going to have his first day of school from dad’s house and then come here afterwards. Same difference.

Methuen High School Teacher Tests Positive for COVID-19

Jen pointed me to this article tonight.  The Lawrence Eagle Tribune is reporting that a teacher working at Methuen High School has tested positive for COVID-19.  Hooray.

This is going to happen everywhere.  Returning to school now is going to be a disaster of life threatening proportions.

Fortunately, while the teachers have gone back to school already, the students have not.  According to the article, classes will start remotely next week and then in early October they will switch to a hybrid model where students will be in the school buildings part of the time and learning remotely the rest.  So it’s very bad news for the teachers in the high school who now have to quarantine, but it could have been worse.

I just hope the teacher who tested positive is okay.  Get well soon, if you’re experiencing symptoms.  If you’re asymptomatic then get rid of the virus soon.

This does not actually affect my family.  We do live in Methuen, but my step kids’ father does not.  At some point, long before I was a part of the equation, it was decided that dad’s address would determine their school district, so my step son goes to school in dad’s town.

Here’s a copy of the article, along with a link.  It was published yesterday and it was written by Bill Kirk.

METHUEN — Just a few days into the new school year, a teacher at Methuen High tested positive for COVID-19, forcing the district to implement quarantines and contact tracing, according to Superintendent Brandi Kwong.

Teachers reported back to school Sept. 1 for professional development, Kwong said. She said the positive test will not impact the start of school for students, which is Sept. 14 for online classes. A hybrid of online and in-person classes starts Oct. 5.

“Protocols were followed and were successful and it will not impact our reopening,” Kwong said. “We worked with the Department of Public Health, the nurse leader and the principal at the high school.”

As a result of the positive case, a number of people who came into contact with the person, including children who have been in the building, have been quarantined.

According to an email obtained by The Eagle-Tribune, at around 6:30 p.m. Thursday Principal Richard Barden reached out to teachers at the high school.

“I have been notified that there is a COVID-19 positive case at Methuen High School,” he said. “If you are identified as a close contact you will be notified by a local board of health or a contact tracer who will explain recommendations for quarantine.”

Barden could not be reached for comment.

Mayor Neil Perry, who serves as chairman of the School Committee as part of his official duties, said protocols were followed informing people who may have come in contact with the teacher.

“We have to expect this,” he said. “It’s a test of how we handle it. … As people go back, we are going to have some cases.”

School Committee member Ryan DiZoglio said he found out about the case from postings on social media Thursday night, after which, he said, “my phone blew up.”

“I got 15 phone calls in 20 minutes,” he said, noting that some came from from teachers who work in other schools, including Comprehensive, Timony, Marsh and Tenney grammar schools.

“A lot of their concern is, ‘Why weren’t we told about this,’ which is ridiculous,” he said. “Teachers are very concerned they had to find out from Facebook.”

He said all teachers in the district should have been notified.

“Not knowing anything is concerning,” he said. “They want reassurance that we are containing it, everything is fine and we can move forward.”

Kwong said she did notify members of the School Committee, but that only teachers at the high school were notified of the positive test.

Jonathan Becker, president of the Methuen Education Association — the union representing teachers — did not respond to a voicemail or email seeking comment.

Sad

My step daughter, Bellana, just left. She’s moving back to school tomorrow. She’s staying at her dad’s tonight but she came here today to pack up a few last minute things. We aren’t going to see her until Thanksgiving, assuming Covid-19 doesn’t blow up all of the University’s scheduled plans.

I’m sad.

I’m thrilled for her, but I’m sad for me. Does that make sense? Does every step dad feel this way when their step kids leave for college? Probably. I hope she has a great time. I hope Covid-19 leaves her alone. I hope she learns everything there is to learn.