Tuesday, February 3, 2009

February 14th will mark 6 months since Chuck was killed.  It doesn't seem possible that half a year has passed already.  While I have made progress with business, I am still all over the scope with emotions.  

First of all, I still can't believe all of this happened.  From the evening of the crash, I have wanted to say goodbye.  I sort of expected Chuck to come home so we could say goodbye.  We didn't get to see the body until after the funeral home had a go with painting him that strange color.  I feel disconnected from the accident.  We didn't know he'd died until hours later.  However, all kinds of people who didn't know him were on the scene.  I wish that Zoe and I had seen his bicycle when we were at the scene.  Maybe, just maybe, we would have been able to go to UMC if we had known about the crash before we got home.

I had a feeling that Chuck's death would hit me later.  Partly because of all the decisions that had to be made, putting all the affairs in order.  But, also because he was gone a lot and I adjusted to living on my own.  Chuck was never away 6 months, so now I am really missing him.  I am also coming to grips with being alone.  I find I am needing to cry a lot more, and that the tears do come.

The bicycle memorial has helped.  We buried Chuck, according to his wishes, at the Air Force Academy.  However, that left us with a 14 hour drive to his memorial.  I wanted and needed a place to go to.  I can see it most days that I go out.  I makes me feel that Chuck isn't forgotten.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

The Crash Scene

Here are photos I took of the crash scene when we went to check it out yesterday.  The photo on top shows the west exit from Udahl Park.  Notice the signs with the arrows that curve to the right.  It would be difficult to get up speed and dart out into the eastbound lanes of Tanque Verde.  The  lower photo shows that this is clearly a pedestrian crossing.  Although there are no lines, there is a path in the median making it an unmarked crossing.

This is another view of the median with a crossing cut into it for pedestrians.  It would be on the same level with the street to accommodate wheel chairs, etc.  Just a few yards beyond you can see the police markings on the pavement indicating where the left front tire stopped.  Other markings start at the crossing.

So, it appears from evidence at the scene that Chuck was not merging into traffic, but moving through the crosswalk with his bicycle.  Perhaps pushing it indicating that he was on foot.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Buying a new car

Buying a new car is not all that much fun. In fact, I think a colonoscopy is more fun. At least you have the satisfaction of doing something positive for your health when you're done. And, you can eat solid food again. Car buying...no. You have the distinct feeling that people have lied to you. I just want to buy a car. Why do we have to engage in all the drama of bargaining?

Friday, October 3, 2008

Japanese toilets

I just googled Japanese toilets, Tucson, and all I got was blogs. I was sort of hoping I could do a little online shopping, just to find out how much one would cost. Why??? you ask. Well, they're rather, uh, nice. They provide a nice place to sleep, take care of business, and you leave the experience fresh as a daisy after a summer rain shower. There is also the option of "white noise" to mask any embarrassing other noises.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

August 14th

Several blogs ago, I talked about how my husband fainted. Exactly one week later, he was killed while crossing Tanque Verde Road with his bicycle.

Chucko used to fly in the AF. Once in a while, those planes would fall out of the air. As the wife of a flyer, I imagined the blue uniforms (euphemism for the squadron commander, etc) to with bad news. Blue uniforms did indeed come to the door, but they were from Tucson Police. A lot of stuff has been going through my mind the past 4 weeks so I am going use my blogs to record some of it.

You know when 2 police officers and some volunteers from Witness Protection come to the door that the news is bad. Albert Martinez, one of the volunteers was the one who told me. I still feel the shock in my upper arms. I walked around wanting Chuck to come back just to say goodbye. The house began to fill up with people. There were, besides Zoe and I, 19 friends who came to see us.

For the next several days I could hardly eat. I was hungry and I tried to eat, but I kept getting interrupted and then I lost interest. Cups of tea were poured for me, but they got cold before I could drink them. The phone rang, people came to the house, there were decisions and arrangements to be made. A couple of the family members were not as much supportive as they were high maintenance.

The visitation was a chance for people to come and pay their respects. A lot of them did. I had expected that it would be comforting to see people. And it was, but it was also hard work. I had to be on my feet and acting as a hostess. Sometimes I greeted people and wondered how I would carry on a conversation. Thankfully, about the time the casual talk started, others would arrive and I would start all over again. The time should have gone by quickly. It didn't.

Here's a thought about bodies. Chucko suffered some road rash on his face, so the guys at the funeral home used their makeup as putty to smooth things out. But the color was awful. It makes you wonder what sort of names are given to the shades of skin color. What was used on Chuck could be described as "cadaver taupe".

Personal space becomes a luxury. Hugs are great, but after so many, they become, well, cheap. The lenses in my glasses had so many cheek and nose prints I couldn't get them clean. I wasn't sure whether some people wanted a hug or a handshake. There was one couple who did a sort of double hug and talked to me for several minutes.

OK, that's enough for this post.

Friday, September 5, 2008

Family Values II

Back to Sarah Pallin....

It seems that the people that she represents [moral majority, evangelical, right wing, right to life, do-gooders] pride themselves on their stance on abortion. Yet, they continue to vote against, by voting for Republican candidates, who do not advocate health care, public schools, keeping jobs in the US, etc. We applaud the fact that Bristol didn't have an abortion. But, I do not applaud the mother who used her infant son to cover up his sister's baby bump. Nor do I think much of a mother who thinks her own political career is more important than her daughter at this time. Will Bristol really get the support she needs as her mother campaigns and maybe becomes VP [gag!] Maybe Bristol wasn't getting the attention she needed as her mom juggled a pregnancy and her career.

So, have your baby and marry that boyfriend. Hope he has a job with health care.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Family Values

The party that prides itself on family values has chosen Sarah Palin as its Vice Presidential candidate. I have just one teeny weeny little question.


She has a high profile job as a governor, yet subjects her pregnant child to this kind of public scrutiny. How did this girl feel when she had to hold her baby brother to cover up her own baby bump? Is the "baby daddy" going to stay with the daughter while the rest of us are subjected to truth and lies in the tabloids and the likes of the "Insider"? Let's just jinx a teenage marriage before it gets off to a rocky start.