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Sunday, September 11, 2016

If Only . . . A Bad Dream . . .

As all the news is reporting -- it is "hard to believe that it has been fifteen years" but that is the way I feel as well. It was like yesterday that early (on the west coast) we turned on the TV to watch in disbelief.

Supposedly it was a beautiful day in New York City on that day. Today it was fitting that here it was a cool dreary early-morning reminder of that event.

How different the world would be if the whole thing had been a bad dream. I remember very well enjoying a breakfast at the top of one of the towers in the late 80s. It was a memory that I won't forget. I was with a group of folks from my company while attending a business meeting.

In 2001, Gail & I were working our retirement jobs. We were teaching a class that one of the students reported in a few days late because he had been in NYC on that fateful day and could not catch a flight home . . . he was one of the lucky ones.

Unfortunately a receptionist in our office had a son working in one of the towers that day -- he managed to make a few phone calls (at least one to his brother) before the phone and he went silent.

Even today lives are impacted as some of the results of the toxic air that responders and others were forced to breath are now having major health issues.

We lived thousands of miles from the scene but like almost everyone in the country we were "touched" in many ways. For example, I also worked a part time job in a photo shop because it was a fit with a hobby for me.  Part of my activities involved developing film (just at the start of the digital era that put film out of business) and there were some local dentists from our town that had volunteered to do forensic work to identify remains. I developed many of those films . . . and I will never forget those images.

And so it goes -- we remember . . .

But as the colorized photo to the right shows, we are still working hard on the family tree.

Every day I do something that adds to the tree.

This week I worked on two branches mostly. One was a branch for a former spouse (they are the relatives of my children after all) and they are a very interesting family.

The other family was from "my-side" of the tree and a few generations that needed updating.

Mostly all the above work can be seen on the tree that is publicly displayed on

Remember that facts and pictures of the living are not shown on those trees -- unless you have been authorized to view them.

Dogs have been a huge part of my life. I have had more dogs than I can count. I know that this is true for many others in our tree. Here are a couple of examples:

This photo (colorized) shows my Uncle Stewart watching his father, Dayton Bumgardner, working with their dog "Prince".

This photo had to have been taken in the early 1930s before color photography, by whom I don't know.

It is the yard of their home at 2521 N Bernard St, Chicago, Illinois.

I of course never got to meet "Prince" only heard about him. But I'm sure that I would have liked him.

Looking at the photo, it is interesting to note that Uncle Stew had his right pantleg rolled up -- probably to keep it from getting caught in a bicycle chain -- I remember doing that as well.

Still remembering:

The picture to the right (also colorized) shows me, my brother Jon & our puppy "Skippy"'

It was taken -- maybe by our older brother, Marv who was "into" photography in those days and had a dark room in the basement of this house.

This is in the yard of 240 S LaGrange Road, LaGrange, Illinois, in the early 1950s.

The house these days is listed as one of the historical homes in the area.

Besides family tree climbing and things like watching baseball and now some football we are enjoying our new "stovetop grill".

We have used it for most of the proteins that we enjoy with great success.

It is hard to believe that for under $20 (Amazon) this devise has given us more than we could have hoped for.

Tonight we will use it for the ribs we are planing on for dinner along with maybe corn-on-the-cob and also roasted potatoes.

This grill is amazing and is very easy to use and clean up afterwards.

And finally, remember

That is a bit of our week, "see you all in a few"!

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