Fourteen Hours Ahead

That’s the time zone difference between The Planet Ann Arbor and Shanghai, China. And China is where the GB Fins are today, er, tomorrow, beginning their tour of that country with the Windiana Concert Band. My brother married a flute player (like me) and I think Karen is playing first chair plus piccolo. Valdemort followed in her trombone playing dad’s footsteps and is also in the band. Pengo Janetto is not a band nerd so she’s doing setup. And Karen’s mom is along for the ride, excited to be visiting cities that her brothers saw during World War II. The boyz of bark are locked up at the kennel until I spring ’em. And they better be good! Grok grok grok. I’ll keep ’em in line. Grok grok! Roight, Froog, you’ll be the biggest carouser. Hmmm, maybe Alfredo’ll decide you resemble a hedgehog… GROKGROKGROKGrok Help!!! Grok grok.

Yes, I could have participated in the China trip. For a number of reasons, I wasn’t ready. The short of it is: after New Year’s Day 2007, I felt like I’d been hit by a train. The previous year and a half of hauling a sleeping bag around and living out of a ratty old LL Bean duffel bag filled with tattered ski or kayak clothes (depending on the season) had to end. I had to kick the zombie out of my body and grab hold of my life again. And the first step on that journey was regaining control of my house. Yeah, I know that sounds like a boring excuse. I’ll spare you the details but it had to be done. And I knew I would want to be around the Great Lake State this summer. People are flying in and out. California, China, Maine, Sénégal. I dunno how to describe it but I had to be on the ground. It seemed like somebody had to be.

This is Karen’s trip. Right around the time that my brother and Karen got to the point that the kids were getting to be on their own and they could maybe actually do some fun things, Jim’s health was hitting a downward slide. I don’t think I quite realized how much at the time. I kept thinking that he was going to beat the H-C virus somehow. My hunches are often sometimes right. Abysmally so sometimes. Not this time. It blindsided me.

I am fortunate to have a sister-in-law like Karen and I am very happy that she has forged ahead with her life. It’s what my brother would want. This trip is a celebratory trip as much as a working trip. Life goes on. You might as well have fun. So you guys have a great time. It’s been a long time since I’ve been happy hanging around tinkering with The Landfill. I’m not a zombie any more. I’m not happy every minute. But I am not numb like I was a year ago. I’m making progress and I’m having my own weird kind of Planet Ann Arbor fun. My bro’ would say, “Yeah mon.” Or maybe, “Kee-reist!” You never know.

And, lessee, it’s 6:47 PM here, so that must mean it’s 8:47 AM in Shanghai — tomorrow!!!

4 Responses to “Fourteen Hours Ahead”

  1. Kathy Farnell Says:

    Hi Anne, I hope that Karen and Crew are having a wonderful time in China – So when they come back does that mean they lose a day, or do they have to live a day over again (like the movie Ground Hog Day)? Whatever. I’m glad that they had the chance to go. I’m sure that they will remember this for a long time.
    Happy Anniversary to Doug and I today also. 38 Years. We went out to dinner at the Fenton Hotel. Doug is now settled on the sofa and I am here in the kitchen. Good Day. Love, Kathy

  2. kayak woman Says:

    Without looking at the itinerary, they arrive home at roughly the same time they leave China. On the same day.

    Happy Anniversary!!!

  3. jane Says:

    jane advises that while you are on the Planet A2 you take full advantage of the Top of the Park and Summer Festival. which begins tonight!

  4. Webmomster Says:

    Actually, all of China is 12 hours different from EDT time, so we never had to really reset our watches (although I made the concession to change my alarm clock only so that the AM alarm would actually go off in the AM 😉 )

    For Kathy F, we returned the same day we left – the day was basically extended to 36 hours long. Made up for the equally-shortened day that we had going *over* to China (16 or so hours for June 13…).