More Torture Followed by Joy–Part Five

The new doctor’s assessment brought me two new tortures: One is a Levine tube, the second a foot board. The first little beauty is a rubber hose, brown in color and very flexible. The doctor inserted one end of the tube into my nose and quickly fed it down the throat into my stomach. Just what I needed another tube: first a catheter, then a cut down, and now a feeding tube.

The second torture was to lay with my feet pointed up and flat against a board. This exercise kept my calf muscles from shortening permanently. Shortened calf muscles would make walking harder. I still thought that one day the doctor would say ‘time to go home’ and I’d jump out of bed and walk out.

Visiting days were becoming a major highlight of each week. The longer I stayed in the CDH the more I wanted to see my friends and family. The half hour seemed so short yet there were times when it was too long. Mom came with a friend most times. It had to be hard on her to get there. She took five streetcars to reach the hospital. That took several hours each way. Selfish me, I never thought about how hard it was for her, I only looked forward to seeing her. Dad came on Sunday. I’m sure Sis visited too, but I don’t remember. My brother Bill couldn’t come because he was in the army stationed in Germany.

Once I could sit up in bed, we began using small chalk boards to write messages to each other. Finally, we communicated again. Mom’s girlfriend Barbara Thomas and our neighbor Mrs. Lihota came with her often. They did all the writing because Mom couldn’t write in English.

After being in for several weeks, Mom and Dad drove Joe Barath and Jack Adams to visit.  It was good to see them, but awkward. They were brave to come into that environment. We separated when we left for high school, and now this new adventure separated me even further from my world of friends.

To be continued . . .

Burning Gas–Driving Through a Cloud

About a year before Peggy and I took this trip to the Northwest, our friends Bill and Lois toured the area by train. Bill couldn’t say enough for the scenery along the route between Banff and VanCouver. Peggy and I did it by car, and I can attest to the beauty of this section of mountains. One of my grandest memories is coming down the QEW-1 into a valley covered by a layer of clouds. Everything went foggy for a few minutes then we broke through the cloud layer and the grandest little town appeared before us. On the way out of town we went into the clouds again to break out into the blue sky at the top of the mountain.

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Among the many reasons for this trip was to see this section of Canada, and to show Peggy a real garden.

We arrived in Vancouver during  evening hours, and settled into a hotel near the ferry landing. The following morning we boarded the ferry for the hour ride to Vancouver Island. We checked into the Fairmont hotel and did a walking tour of the historic district. The day was sunny, and mild. We enjoyed the shops and the food.

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