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Back In The Saddle

July 20, 2018
Emmetsburg News

To paraphrase General Douglas MacArthur from back in the 1940's, "I?Have Returned."

No, it was not wading ashore in the heat of battle, as the General did. It was more of a limp in and a plop down in my office chair, trying to remember what I'd forgotten in three weeks away from my desk. Happily, I've started to knock most of the rust off, and even though I'm still gimping around, it is good to be back into a normal routine.

This is the point where I?should probable explain all that, so, without going into great detail, I?went into the Spencer Hospital on June 7 and spent a week there, having surgery for a foot issue. By necessity, I was at home for the next three weeks, with lots of Doctor's appointments, but I?returned to work last week, July 9, and have been ramping back up since then.

While I?have to admit that spending three weeks away from work was somewhat relaxing, I can't say it was something I'd care to do again at any point in the future. Firstly, regular TV is rapidly becoming a disappointment. I can only watch so many westerns, listen to so many "news commentators" tell me how terrible the world is, and I absolutely do not have any time for the so called "talk shows" where everything is everyone else's fault.

The only television I enjoyed was the reruns of WKRP?in Cincinnati. With a couple of stints in radio in my past, I can identify with that show, and think it is still one of the most underappreciated comedies of all time. My favorite episode is the Thanksgiving episode, "The Pinedale Shopping Mall was bombarded with live turkeys. Film at 11."

Anyhow, I?digress.

Being laid up for three weeks gives one plenty of opportunities to think about a variety of subjects. In my case, it took about three days to realize my co-workers here at The Reporter and The Democrat would continue to provide you with a quality publication without me in the way, messing things up. I?am so grateful to former Editor Jane Whitmore for coming back to pick up the slack, and to Darren Fraser for jumping in and immersing himself in all the things I?missed out on - Relay for Life, the Chamber's 80th Anniversary, the 4th of July, Anesa McGregor pitched in as well, providing photos and helping when needed; and it was a good feeling to know they were watching over our region and keeping you informed.

And then there were Karmen Gappa and Marsha Duhn, doing whatever they could to help out, taking a photo here and there, rounding up things for me that I?could write from home and send to the office. Teresa Murphy helped immensely by taking a camera to baseball games and helping provide baseball and softball games, as did Jill Schany. I was able to write those sports stories from home, and coupled with their photos, I didn't feel like I'd missed almost the entire seasons for both teams. I did get to see their tournament games, and while I wish they could still be playing, they did their best and had great seasons.

I would be remiss if I?didn't mention Publisher Dan McCain and Office Manager Linda Hill. Dan checked in with me regularly, providing needed words of encouragement and support through this adventure, and Linda made sure that I didn't become destitute without finances, and made sure I was kept in the loop when we would talk.

Being at home for that period of time, I?had great support from wonderful friends Jo and Rick Voss, who graciously taxied me to my appointments, and we've put many a mile on their Tahoe in this grand adventure. They've become a second set of parents to me through this, and saying "Thank You" never really seems to be enough. And of course, the neighbors at home have looked after the house, kept the lawn from looking like native prairie, so a huge thank you to Jane and JR and Cheryl, Don and Sarah. I?have the best neighbors, and living in a small town, people take care of each other. Denise and Shelly made deliveries of groceries when I found I was low on something, and always with a smile and those words of encouragement.

I also owe so much to all of the medical professionals for their kind, compassionate care through this whole episode.

Most of all, my sister Diann came to be with me for several days, providing the best support I?could get and needed the most. The love of family is one of the greatest healing powers in the world, coupled with the care and concern of friends.

To say I am fortunate is an understatement. The better word would be blessed...and I?humbly thank you all.



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