Mineola hasn't looked like this in a long time, and I'd venture to say that when my dad was born, this view would still be very familiar to people who then lived in the area. So I had to check many of my feelings at the door when I arrived at the hospital, and make sure that I didn't say anything that would make him feel worse than he was already feeling.
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Last night, I was at the office until 7:00-7:30 or so, and was not able to visit my dad. My brother knew I was stuck at the office, as my office number came up on his phone when I called him to tell him I'd be down (what was then) tomorrow.
When I went into the office today, I told my boss that I had to get out early to see my dad. So everything in my day circulated around making sure I got out on time and made it to Long Island. Instead of taking the subway to Penn Station as I usually would do, I decided on a change of pace - and took the silver snail out of Brooklyn. Even though I climbed many more stairs than usual, I was glad to have done this. Traveling from Brooklyn to Long Island is much more relaxed than traveling from Penn Station, if only because of the lesser number of people commuting from there.
I'm glad that my dad is in good hands. But I'm very upset that he didn't deal with the pain that's been wracking his bones for a long while. His arthritis could have been treated, but my dad is too stoic for his own good. If we lived in Colorado, I'd have picked up some "medicine" from a local dispensary, and told him to smoke early and often. (If it's good enough for Willie Nelson, it's good enough for my dad! But that's another story, best told with a freshly rolled smoke nearby....)
My brother knew that my time on Long Island was limited, so we left my dad around 7:00 pm, and picked up dinner. When done with dinner, we went to dad's house and looked for the stashes of cash that my dad kept there. And then it was a search through legal paperwork to insure that the house was paid for, and was in our names. (My brother and I were gifted the house, with my dad retaining a life interest in the place.) There is a lot more paperwork to sort through, as we need to find out what we can protect from government claims - and we will be consulting with appropriate professionals to do so.
Eventually, it was time to leave - and my brother was thinking of driving me to the Bronx to catch a train. One problem - this would be a very bad idea, as it wouldn't save me any time due to the need to transfer at Croton. So I told him to drop me off at Queensboro plaza, where I could catch the Flushing line to Grand Central, and then take my normal train home (at a late time).
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Of course, this is the start of a long process of cleaning out the house. I'm glad that my dad is still alive, as it takes much of the sting out of this process....