Aug/Sept 2006

Another hurdle!  The "Auction"and all our accumulated possessions from the past 35 years of living at
218 Pearl Street, Stoddard are now warming someone else's heart.  We saved a few family treasures and
they will shortly make their way to our youngest son Bill's storage area in Seattle.

The preparation for the auction was tough both from a physical and emotional standpoint. With emotional
probably leading the charge.  In the closing hours the physical was helped tremendously by the auction
workers who carried out, sorted, arranged, boxed, and ran the show.  The emotional side has been with us
for some time now as we wrestled with the nagging questions of:  "can I really part with this?"  "what will
so-and-so say when they see the auctioneer holding up that special gift they gave us a few years back?"  
There were many moments, minutes, hours of tears and lost sleep, especially for Kathleen as all this
unfolded.  Me, the tough guy, did my best to be their with the shoulder and the hugs when and as needed.  

At exactly 3:30 P.M. on Aug 28th 2006 Kathleen and I stood off to the side as the auctioneer's helper held
high the first item up for sale, I will remember that moment for as long as I live.  It was a stupid wood splitting
maul from the garage.  Something that did nothing for me in life except to remind me of w*rk.  Now at the
threshold of retirement where that dirty four letter word w*rk has little meaning----I lost it.  

It obviously wasn't the parting with the splitting maul but I think it was the realization that all the planning,
the preparation, the execution, that goes in to reaching ones goals was finally darn close to reality.  It was I
think, relief!

Now tucked securely and snuggly in to our new "wheel estate", a new chapter begins.  Woop's, no DSL to
hook this laptop to so I can update you all.  Guess we will have to put on our matching tee shirts that say
"Full-Timing class of 2006" and go find an internet café.  No need to hurry! Tomorrow will do!
A little drop of "Ol' Man River" with us always