Life can be messy sometimes

Like this week. I was supposed to be in Shands Surgical Center on Thursday to have the remaining silicon oil removed from my left eye. My sister was going to drive me to the motel from the surgery and stay overnight to drive me to the post-op visit with the eye surgeon on Friday morning.

But her father-in-law, who is in his eighties, suffered a dangerous drop in his blood pressure. This put him in the hospital Monday night, and she and her husband spent a lot of time with him. Tuesday night, Carol was leaving the hospital, and slipped and fell in the parking structure. Some nurses heard her calling for help and get her into the emergency room. She suffered a bruised knee and elbow, and wasn’t at all sure the stiffness would allow her to drive, certainly not to Gainesville and back. I called the surgical center in Gainesville and postponed the surgery until next week.

Carol  picked up her father-in-law from the hospital Thursday afternoon, and got him home. She stayed until her husband arrived after work and relieved her. She came home for a few minutes, collected some stuff and said they’d be staying over with her father-in-law for a few days. So what happens Thursday night?

I’d been working upstairs, doing a lot of editing and working on some promotional material during the day. I’d gone downstairs to get something to eat and then sat around watching TV. My brother-in-law came back from his dad’s to pick up some clean shirts, and stepped into a large puddle just inside the front door. The water heater had blown its top.

We got the water and power to the heater turned off, and spread some beach towels down to soak up some of the water before it crept under the wall-to-wall carpet. Then he left to go back to his dad’s. Friday morning I let the plumbers in, and once they had the old heater out the recovery guy came by and sucked up all of the water. Then the plumbers hooked up the new heater. Once they were gone I got all of those towels into the washing machine.

The place is not exactly a mess, but it’s not the neatest place in town, either.

But we do have a new water heater.

And I learned not to get all that wrapped up in my own plans any more.


About Gary Showalter

Gary Showalter was born in Honolulu, Hawaii. He lived in Aruba, Florida and the Panama Canal Zone before joining the U.S. Army during the 1960s. Following his discharge from the Army, Mr. Showalter picked cotton in East Texas, baled hay in Ardmore Oklahoma, sold light bulbs in Los Angeles, California, and built cattle pens in Fallon, Nevada (during a blizzard, of course). After settling in Atlanta, Georgia, Mr. Showalter worked as a professional gardener before turning his hand to furniture making. In 1981, he moved to Israel, married, and raised four children while working as a furniture maker, silversmith, goldsmith, and ornamental wood turner. He served in the Israel Defense Forces Reserves for sixteen years, and when not on active duty he worked in government and private security. He has also served in senior management positions in two software development companies in Israel. During his time in Israel, Mr. Showalter published articles dealing with international terror and the Israel-Arab conflict in the Jerusalem Post, Israel national News and several political science web sites. Mr. Showalter returned to the United States in the fall of 2003, to care for an elderly parent. He published his first novel, “The Big Bend”, in the fall of 2008. His second novel, “Hog Valley”, is now in print. Mr. Showalter's third novel, “Twisted Key”, was published in the fall of 2011, and his fourth novel, "Lonesome Cove" is now available in Kindle format and should be published in paper near the end of 2012. He currently lives in Deland, Fl, where he is co-authoring "A Silent Star" with Tony Attanasio. "A Silent Star" is the true tale (though novelized, with names changed for security reasons) about the 4-person covert action team sent into Yemen to capture Osama Bin laden immediately after the bombing of the USS Cole in the Aden harbor in Yemen in October of 2000.
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