It is Saturday afternoon and it has been an eventful week. Six weeks ago, when I said that I would do a presentation on Bee Parasites and Diseases, I thought I would take the state apiarist’s slides and present as she did. Speaking is an easy thing for me to do and I love to teach so it was not a big imposition and the bee group was short a speaker.
Unfortunately, my technology and the bee inspector’s slides did not speak the same techno-language. After spending eight to ten hours of evenings and weekends trying to make the presentation talk with my software, I gave up and started preparing my own presentation. Of course, that takes a bit of work. Almost seventy slides later, I had my presentation ready and I think it went well. Even though it was after lunch, I didn’t see any of the 55-60 people asleep. Several commented that they enjoyed it and the coordinator said: “you know this means you will have to speak again.” Perhaps, but I will be good about picking my dates next time.
My daughter was to head back to Wooster College on that same Saturday, but the weather looked better to travel on Sunday. A sophomore at college, she still does not have her driver’s license, so one of us had to take her back. On Sunday that duty feel to Matt, because I headed to Arlington for the burial of one of my classmates. Because I fall asleep behind the wheel, I do not drive long distances anymore. Garrett said he wanted to visit Arlington and we made it into a road trip. Because of the weather, the trip was on and off and on and off and finally, we decided to go. The last hour of the trip was made on snow-covered roads going 8 to 35 mph and took two to three hours. We did see several wreaks, but nobody was seriously hurt. Another classmate and his wife put us up for the night and although we stayed up late catching up and the house was nice and the bed comfortable, they did not issue me one of the dogs to sleep with and I did not sleep well.
It was a sunny, cold day for the ceremony. The patriotism of the burial in the newly fallen snow certainly reached deep in my soul for Gary and his surviving wife and daughters. The military precision is well practiced in the crisp folding of the flag, to the reports of the rifles to the lone bugle in the snow. Taps gets to me every time, but especially that day in Arlington.
We attended a luncheon at another classmate’s. The retired admiral’s house was stunning or as Garrett put it, “I sure didn’t want to touch anything in that house.” Knowing what amazing men and women my classmates had become was awe inspiring. While I am proud of them and what they accomplished, I also know that I stand toe to toe with them with ease. The starkness of snow in Arlington cemetery and the power in the room of those that had gathered to celebrate Gary’s life touched me several times even after we left. Of course, we stayed later than I planned and got on the road later than I desired. It was no surprise that we were back home, not at 6:00 pm, but close to 11:00 pm. I missed the monthly bee meeting. Needless to say, morning came early.
Tuesday appointments stayed on track, but it was quite steady. I did have to do several workups and give bad news to a few owners. Wednesday, was a catch-up day for patients and administrative details. I am training a new admin assistant who will help with some practice management duties. She did well! I spent a lot of time trying to track down the details needed for quarterly taxes, sales tax report, W-2’s and unemployment reports. It was also a pay week with those duties. In the afternoon, Garret received a call that his dad had some medical issues and he would fly out the next day with his grandmother, his dad’s mother. Thursday and Friday were typical busy days, but with an unexpected staff member down. Erika came in Friday morning to assist and I contacted an alumni employee for some help. Friday night ended in emergency surgery with a beloved cat that could not be saved. I was late to our writer’s critique meeting. I wasn’t really into the writing, but I had hoped that I could load my phone photos onto my new laptop and use my reading time to dry run my presentation on Africa to the University Women’s club that I gave today. Unfortunately, I did not have the correct cord. When I returned to the clinic, the computer ate my presentation three times and crashed. I decided I would deal with it in the morning. I had planned what to say, I just needed the photos to go with it. Austin and I both worked on the technology this morning and neither of us could get the photos on my computer. With 21 minutes before my presentation, I got most of the slides into a video that I could see on the flash drive. I packed up the projectors and headed downtown. Luckily, downtown is close. Unluckily, the projectors did not work with my new computer. The small group was able to view the laptop screen and we had a lot of good discussion after my presentation. I had to leave the presentation to go to the KYOWA Writer’s Group monthly meeting. Since I am an officer I am expected to be there.
After a good meeting with new writing goals and accountability partners set, I still had to attend an online, live vet co-op meeting. I didn’t win any of the prizes, but I did learn some new things. During the meeting lulls, Austin and I discussed options for Garrett’s kennel shift. Becky Jo stepped up and traded Brynn who will probably have problems with the weather. That meant, if I get my article done tonight, I can sleep in tomorrow morning!
Two presentations, a road trip, emotional Arlington service, tax forms and taxes, stressful cases and management issues and I am glad this week is over. Well, I still have to be in tomorrow to supervise kennels, but I often do that. Maybe I can write my article for spring toxins for the magazine, my article for next week or my Arlington impressions while I am in. After all, I am working at the Animal ER next week.