Well, That Sucked.

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Flu, that is, which I’m just getting over. We moved into the new house and then promptly succumbed, Amy first and then – just long enough later that I began to think perhaps I was immune – I went down, too. There’s an immunological point of interest here. Amy had received her flu vaccine, while I had not. All told, it seemed I suffered slightly less than she did during the peak of it, although my cough is lingering longer. I know, I know, the real question is how I did compared to how I would have done if I’d had the shot. Now that I think about it, I haven’t gotten around to getting one of these shots for years. But let’s just say I’m highly motivated to get one this fall.

Because the flu sucks.

So, when last I wrote, Amy was not even home from Venezuela yet. She made it, obviously, although I suppose it goes almost without saying that one of her flights was delayed coming back and she missed a connection. Not too bad, compared to what’s happening with the airlines these days.

In the next few days after Amy’s return, we cleaned the new house and decided one night to repaint the living room and my office. Anyone familiar with our Baltimore living room will find the color familiar. We are trying to establish a nationwide “Sutton and Amy’s Living Room” brand.

We finished packing the house and moved that Saturday. I had put a local “lumper,” or mover, on hold to help us out. But a friend showed up early and helped me knock out so much of the heavy stuff that I ended up cancelling the lumper. He sounded more disappointed that he now would have no excuse to miss the baby shower his girlfriend was hosting, as opposed to missing out on the money. I promised to buy him a beer sometime.

As we moved in, we had offers of help from not one but two sets of neighbors; we sent the blearier looking couple – still holding coffee cups – home, however. But our immediate neighbors helped out for a couple of hours and even joined us for pizza and beer in the box-choked living room afterwards. A nice change of pace from the hide-behind-the-blinds types up in the South Hills.

That Sunday, we cleaned the old house. Spent almost 8 hours at it. Nice big place, that house.

And we had five or so days to settle in and unpack a little before the flu arrived. Two weeks ago, on Saturday morning, Amy was all abuzz with unpacking and related project goals. Then I realized I hadn’t heard her moving around for a while and found her huddled under the covers in bed, wracked with chills. At first we assumed it was some Venezuelan bug, but after a day or so it became clear what we were dealing with. I fetched cold drinks and made tea, waiting for the first signs in myself. While I waited, I proceeded with working on a business case study I’m doing for a new client. Unfortunately, this wasn’t complete by the time I got sick, but on the plus side I learned that I can still write decently well with a fever.

But goodbye to all that. Today is my third day of feeling healthy again, while Amy’s been back at work since Monday. I took my first morning walk since before getting sick, something I’m looking forward to making a regular practice of now that we live in an interesting-looking neighborhood again. (I keep forgetting to bring my camera, but wait until you see this place.) Today I walked down to the California Street foot bridge, across the recently undammed Clark Fork River, and looked at the mountains to the west, their tops lit up by the morning sun. It was so picturesque, it made me nauseous. Or maybe that was a little lingering flu.

Well, now that we’ve got the move out of the way, and with no serious illness to hold me back, look for updates nearly as scintillating as this one on a little more regular basis.

Meanwhile, Neale sends the following word from the Golden State:

I’m assuming you read something about the Olympic torch being diverted from its planned route yesterday in San Francisco. Apparently it disappeared into a waterfront warehouse, only to reappear elsewhere in the city hours later for a truncated relay, far from the thousands that had gathered along the planned parade route (including both protesters and families that just came to see it). Well, in this case “elsewhere” was none other than directly in front of my bike shop. I arrived for work at 2pm to find a chaotic scene of police motorcycles rushing up and down Van Ness Avenue, blocking traffic and shouting at pedestrians to get out of the road. It took almost an hour for anything to appear over the crest of the hill on Van Ness, but eventually two large charter buses, surrounded by hundreds of police on foot and in various vehicles, pulled into view. The buses stopped on the block in front of the bike shop, and a fairly decent sized crowd, mostly from neighborhood businesses and houses, grew along the side of the road. The bus opened, and the torch emerged. At this point me and my coworker were standing in front of the shop, me with the cordless phone. I answered a call from a woman that explained that she was with one of the local TV news networks, and was wondering if I could see the torch, because they had had reports of its location and looked up businesses in view of it. She insisted that I go on the air and answer questions. I was reluctant but thought it might be amusing, so I said OK. After a few confusing moments on hold, I could hear the audio from the newscast, a pro-tibet protester speaking his mind. Then one of the anchors said my name, and asked me some questions about what I was seeing. I gave a brief description of the scene, and noted that the torch didn’t look like it was actually lit. The anchor snapped at me. “Oh I assure you, it’s lit.” Ok, I said, whatever you say. Eventually the torch passed, surrounded by a phalanx of police and bodyguards. A few people booed and some people cheered. Everyone snapped pictures. The swell of people following on the sidewalk knocked over our display of bikes, domino-style. And then it was gone. So thousands of people showed up to see the torch yesterday, and I’m one of the few hundred that actually got to see it, just by showing up for work.