Not-So-Ready ReadyCare

For the past few days Kevin has been suffering through severe allergies. He was sneezing early on, but now he’s coughing and trying to cough up mucus. We kept Kevin home yesterday because we didn’t want the school to overreact, so Mrs. Earp took him to Temple’s ReadyCare facility.

The insurance provided by the city is top-notch. (It makes up for our pitiful salaries.) A few years ago, the city hooked up with Temple University’s ReadyCare system, and told us to always go there first before, say, to a hospital. Apparently it costs the city less to go to Temple, and for the most part, they were always very good.

Mrs. Earp brought Kevin to the local ReadyCare, signed in, and explained the problem. Immediately the intake nurse said, “If he’s coughing, he has Covid.”

The missus looked at her blankly, since not one doctor or nurse so much as approached Kevin, let alone examined him. The staff effectively told them to leave, and Mrs. Earp called me soon after. These people were lucky I was working, because I would have thrown a fit in that building.

Frustrated, Mrs. Earp decided to take Kevin to Holy Redeemer’s ReadyCare, and not only did they not shoo them away, they examined him and had him take a Chinese Wuhan Virus test, just in case. The doc believes it’s allergies, but they want to be sure.

Kevin will have to stay home for a few days until he gets the test results, but it’s better than dealing with the Temple people. I mean, if you cannot be professional, why would anyone trust you?

We will never, ever go to Temple ReadyCare again. Ever.

Well, I’m Home Sweet Home

Well, I’m back in Philadelphia after two fabulous weeks in the Outer Banks. I had to leave a day early since I’m scheduled to work tonight, and the second I hit the Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel, it rained for most of the rest of the trip.

There’s nothing better than unpacking a full Jeep at 1am.

Sorry for being absent most of the days. Our regimen was as follows. I’d wake up around 9am and take a ten-mile bike ride. (The owners had two bikes, and were available for use. I stopped using the first one after the chain popped and got stuck… three miles away from the house.) I’d come back, we’d have lunch, and head to the beach. We’d come back from the beach around 4pm, eat dinner, and do something together.

We played miniature golf twice. Julia won the first match, and I won the second, to my kids’ chagrin. On the 9th, the missus and I went out to dinner alone, which was nice… and quiet. We ate out as a family a few times, took the trip to the Currituck Lighthouse – where Mrs. Earp’s car wouldn’t start – and generally had fun.

It rained a few times, it always seems to thunder on the island, and two beach days were ruined by dozens and dozens of jellyfish in the surf. We tried to make the best of it, but between that and the hurricane scare, the kids were getting frustrated.

Overall, however, the vacation was calm and fun-filled. It’s nice to be home, but I don’t look forward to going back to work.

Mrs. Earp and the kids should arrive around dinnertime, so I won’t see them until later tonight.

Would You Please Pass The Jelly?

My family and I have been vacationing at the shore since I was in grade school. Despite being deathly afraid of sharks, I usually spent the entire day in the water.

In my decades of shore attendance, however, I have never seen – or even heard – of something like this.

Kyle was on his boogie board Saturday afternoon, catching some decent waves. I was walking the beach with Princess P, and when we returned to our spot, we saw Kyle wearing a towel, and his bathing suit was on the ground.

I looked at Kyle, and he said, “Try to guess what happened.”

Me, being me, I thought he had a bowel accident. I was wrong. His story was incredible.

“I was riding the boogie board and enjoying the waves, when a wave wiped me out. When I recovered, I felt something in my bathing suit pocket. I touched the pocket and realized a jellyfish slipped in there. So, I freaked out, and slowly walked to our spot, put a towel around me, dropped my bathing suit, and walked to the ocean.”

“When I got to the water, I dropped the bathing suit into the waves, and started moving it back and forth in the water. The jellyfish slipped out – it was one of the stinging ones – and floated away. I haven’t out on my suit since then.”

I asked him if he was stung, and he said, “No. I walked very slowly to the spot, because I thought if I ran it would have gotten me.”

The ocean was filled with jellyfish Sunday afternoon, so Kyle decided he’d stay on land most of the day. Weirdest story I’ve ever heard.

True Kevin Stories

During the Wuhan virus, my youngest son has been getting his fresh air by cycling a few miles through the neighborhood. Since he’s twelve, we try not to have him go too far, so he makes a few laps around the area.

But that’s not all.

On Tuesday he rode to the BJ’s Wholesale club about a half mile away. He rode his bike through the lot, and suddenly stopped when he noticed something which annoyed him. You see, there were a bunch of shopping carts throughout the parking lot, so he decided to park his bike, and move every cart to the cart corral. (Or whatever you call the thing where you leave the carts.)

When he came home Kevin let us know what he did. While I was proud of him for doing such a nice thing, I asked him when he started working at BJ’s Club.

Yesterday Kevin rode again and stopped at BJ’s again. This time he saw a very large toilet paper box lying in the parking lot. It was probably three feet by three feet. Angered that someone would just toss a box onto the lot, Kevin picked up the box, rode home with it – it was not crushed; the box was large – and put it in our recycling.

Again, I was proud of him, but I said he shouldn’t jeopardize your safety by riding home carrying a large empty box.

I figured this would happen after the weekend, when he stopped to pick up four empty plastic water bottles and rode them home while steering the bike with one arm…

Continue reading “True Kevin Stories”

Kyle’s Going Hollywood

Well, sorta. During most athletic seasons at the University of Dallas, most coaches put up profiles of their student-athletes. Thursday was Kyle’s turn. They asked him a few questions about likes, dislikes, etc., and wrote a few nice words about the boy before posting it to Instagram.

You can see it all above, and if it’s difficult to read, just click the photo.

The photo, taken at UD this season is great, but his favorite movie is even better.

Country Road, Take Us Home

Aaannnddd… we’re back!

I cannot stress enough how beautiful most of the states we visited were. For all the jokes, Arkansas is really kinda nice. Memphis looks amazing, especially at night, as does Nashville.

That said, driving 3,000 miles in four days is a bit of a grind. Everything hurts – back, feet, eyes – and after unloading the car, and starting some of Kyle’s laundry, I passed out. Julia had to wake me at 10:30.

We experienced a little bit of everything – insane, speeding reckless drivers in Texas, a really bad accident in Arkansas (the mobile home was nearly destroyed and there appeared to be no injuries, miraculously), the tornado wake in Nashville, and Google Maps screwing up by taking us through the DC Beltway. In Texas we had to navigate through a foot of water on an overflowing road, and in Jackson, Tennessee I rented a room in the worst motel in America. Dirty, dingy, and I think it reeked of crack smoke. (Kyle said the experience was a good life lesson.)

I cleaned more bugs off the windshield than I could imagine, counted numerous roadkill sightings, saw a million cows, enjoyed the fact every southern gas station carries Mello Yello, and was amazed once again at the courtesy of the South. People are just more polite there, and they are genuinely personable.

I don’t go back to work until Tuesday, and I plan to quarantine myself to either a bed of the couch. I’m still really tired.

Oh, Hi!

After a full day in the road, Kyle wants to get home sooner rather than later, so I didn’t have time to get posts up today.

I’m posting this as we’re approaching Knoxville – Kyle’s driving – and our ETA is midnight. I cannot stress how much I love Tennessee, at least the views from I-40. Beautiful place.

I’ll have posts up for tomorrow. Thanks for your patience.

P.S. – Doc, I’m really sorry we missed you. Hopefully I can stop by if I drive Kyle back in April.

Made It!

It took two days, but I’m currently in the Lone Star State. Kyle and I are packing his things – we’re bringing everything back in case classes don’t resume this semester – and will start our voyage home this afternoon.

Yesterday was awful near the end of the trip. I tore open a fingernail trying to clean with bugs off the windshield – don’t ask; I have no idea how it happened – I’m dealing with what looks like another eye infection (I think I’m done with contacts), and it stormed the moment I hit Texas.

A blurry eye, a downpour, and fourteen hours on the road did not make for a good mood. I’m writing this around midnight on Wednesday morning, and I plan on sleeping for a very long time. This will likely be the last post for the day, unless I get some free time later on.

The Last Train To Crossville

I’m writing this post at 12:28 Tennessee time – apparently they’re an hour behind the east, or I’m just too tired to know what time it is – after checking into a hotel in Crossville, Tennessee. Crossville is roughly halfway between Philly and Dallas, so I decided to crash here, get six or seven hours sleep, and continue the next twelve hours to Texas.

So here’s what happened.

The University of Dallas, in its infinite wisdom, decided to close the school until at least April 14th. They could have made this decision BEFORE Spring Break, which began yesterday, but no, they sent out the email yesterday at 11am. They also said everyone needs to be out of the dorms by 5pm Wednesday.

The airlines are a mess right now, and last minute tickets would cost a fortune, so I have two days to get to Dallas, pack up the boy’s things, and head home. We were given very little notice, and considering I wouldn’t be able to make the trip straight through, I packed bag and ran out of the house a.s.a.p. (This, an hour after my sergeant’s funeral services.)

Don’t get me wrong; I love driving long distances alone. It’s something I’ve loved since I got my license, but the longest trip I ever made straight through was nine hours to Ohio for a recruiting stay with Kyle. Yesterday I trekked through PA, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia, and Tennessee. (Tennessee being the only one of those states I haven’t passed through.)

The trip was actually really nice. Western Maryland and Virginia are scenic, West Virginia was lovelier than I expected, and I can see why my Tennessee friends rave about their state. Tennessee is gorgeous, and I-81 is a nice ride for guys with a lead foot. Like me.

The first leg was more or less uneventful. A tractor trailer blew a tire in front of me and the pieces hit the car. I passed through MD, VA, and WV in a span of maybe a thousand feet – you hit all three states when crossing the Potomac – and I drove by Shenandoah College and James Madison University’s stadiums. Both are awesome.

Today I’ll be driving through Nashville, Memphis, and Arkansas en route to Dallas. I should arrive there around 11pm eastern.

There are posts set for today, and I’ll try to get something for tomorrow as well.

The Wolverine

Well, after giving my sister a month to get acclimated to parental living, Mrs. Earp and I traveled to New Jersey to see baby Logan.

It’s only a half hour drive to their house, and since gas is cheaper in Jersey, we figured it was a win-win. Their house is nice, and while it’s a little messy with all the baby brouhaha, it’s a great looking home.

For his part, Logan was living the life. He slept for most of the time we were there, opened his eyes once to look at me, and only cried when it was time for a bottle. Even the crying wasn’t that obnoxious; hardly what I expected from a baby with adamantium claws.

Allison and Chris are getting used to a baby in the house, and when she regretted the fact Logan wasn’t entertaining, Mrs. Earp and I rolled our eyes. Believe me, you’ll beg for quiet days in a few years. Trust us.

Overall it was great seeing the boy, and he truly is crazy cute.