Thursday, July 28, 2016

A Stormy Gathering for Tim and a Shiny New Stadium

The oldest in our family, my brother Bryan, flew into town a week ago to attend a Celebration of Life gathering we had for Tim last Saturday. We're always happy to have Bryan stay with us although all we had to offer him (during one of the hottest weeks of the summer with a temp at one point in triple digits) was an overly warm upstairs bedroom. We reached 100º f (38º c) on Friday.

The get-together to honor Tim was somewhat of a washout. The heaviest rains of the year descended on the cities just as we were set to begin. Most of the family made it but only a few of his friends did. It was understandable considering the weather. Still, it was nice to be with family and reconnect.

One of Tim's friends from his AA group made it out and he told us how Tim was instrumental in helping him see how his actions were negatively affecting those around him. He stressed how Tim had helped him and others see their lives from a different perspective. We all listened intently as he spoke. John's presence and his words were the essence of why we had gathered. Video at the end of this post.

Bryan, Tammy and I drove up to Foci later in the afternoon on Saturday to watch a demonstration being put on by Ross Richmond, a glass artist from Seattle, Washington. It was nice to be back at Foci as it had been more than 15 months since we were last there. I'm very much looking forward to working in the studio again and getting up to speed as is Tammy. I think we need some new tumblers for our cupboards so maybe I'll begin with that. Tammy is running low on her supply of bud vases because she keeps giving them away so I know where her focus will be. Come to think of it, I'm running a little low on the candle holders I was enjoying making. We definitely need to schedule some bench time!

Keith and Tracee picked up Bryan and me on Sunday morning. We drove into Minneapolis to meet up with Stephanie and Ryan for brunch and then tour the new US Bank Stadium which just opened its doors for the public to check out.

I'm not at all a football fan but I'm quite sure I would enjoy watching a game in this shiny new stadium. I have to believe it's the premier venue in the country now with all of its state-of-the-art trimmings. We were all impressed but still, it comes down to lots of concrete and plastic seats with cup holders. The most impressive part of the stadium for me was the glass which covers 60% of the roof. It has a texture on its outside layer that works to diffuse the light coming in so it's not so bright. It felt like I was in an outdoor stadium but without all the brightness. The large video screens were quite cool as well.

Bryan made plans to drive up and see our sister Claudia about 30 minutes to the north in St Louis Park. I don't see Claudia very often and wanting to make the most of his time with us I decided to tag along as did Tammy. She took us to Wok in the Park where none of us could finish what was put before us. Over dinner we made plans to take in Dublin, Claudia's little pup while she's away on vacation in a few months. I'm not sure what Toby, Allie and Charlie will think of these plans but we'll know soon enough.

Claudia has a nice condominium just off the Greenway. I had biked past her place several times last winter not knowing she lived there.

I had my fastest ever loop out to the trails at Murphy yesterday morning finishing in 1:37:10 and beating my previous best by over 2 minutes. I'm not sure where that effort came from because humidity typically slows me down and it was humid. I scored a bunch of PRs along the way and had a blast!

There were several air traffic controller retirements this past month: Brian Almleaf, Kurt Schultz and Eric Sjoquist to name a few. There were others but their names escape me now.

I have to take a pass on men's league tonight so Tammy and I can spend the afternoon and evening with Rachel grooving to the sights, sounds and tastes of Thursdays on First in the city of Rochester. It's a yearly thing we like to do but I've got a lawn that needs mowing before we leave so I'd better scoot!

Here's a collection of photos from the week.

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