Renu's Week

Wednesday, August 08, 2018

Report of 8 Aug 2018

Hello from the Allen County public library in Fort Wayne!

To me, this is one of the joys of the U.S. - the public library system.

We are well.  Work is okay, frenziedly busy.  The team continues to be wonderful and we laugh and talk and eat, all while mostly drowning in work. 

I had an African-American patient who was diagnosed with heart disease.  She also has to have her gallbladder out, which must wait until her heart is tuned up.  Every year, the conference of the American College of Physicians is good enough to have sessions that educate us on the enormous disparity in health outcomes between patients of color and those of non-color.  I told this patient that info, and asked that she be very vocal about her symptoms.  There was an African-American man, as well, with similar issues and I told him the same thing.  He was pleasant and affable and a fine patient, as was the lady; both were appreciative and that helped caring for them easy.  The man reminded me quite a bit of my father.

Speaking of whom, I talked to him last week and that was nice.  His hearing aid does not quite accommodate the cell phone, so I have to yell.  Sometimes he hears the sentence in entirety.  I finish the conversation with "Good to talk to you, Appa," and he unfailingly and sincerely says, "It's a pleasure."

I miss my mother often.  Since one of our sons is now a performer and the other also has a full-time job, I miss what would have been her enjoyment at seeing them.  My mother was an excellent doctor, and actress and singer; she also sewed and made all her daughters' + many of her sons' clothes when we were children.

On my last week off, I was privileged to get together with Louise Hass.  Louise is a panacea for me; we met when she was the librarian at St. Vincent and she is literate, articulate, widely-travelled, funny and engaging.  I cautioned the restaurant staff that we would likely linger after our meal and they were okay with it.  Louise and I chatted, and ate, and laughed; she also brought me a box of my favorite chocolate.  It was a mighty fine, rejuvenating day.

I also saw my friend, Olivia, and that was great.  Olivia has practically outfitted me completely in hand-me-ups and provides all manner of other sustenance, also.  Her dogs are Navin's best friends, and she houses my stuff in storage; so do our other friends, Kris Rea and Gabe Soukup.  All 3 are very good people, and I am privileged to have them as friends.

Naren came to Fort Wayne on my last week off.  We had a whale of a time catching up on movies and taking walks.  Navin has had some bad luck with flights.  As Naren and I sat in a movie theater, Navin forwarded a text that the airline had cancelled his flight.  It's quite blithe of airlines to do this; they might refund the cash, but what of the missed occasion?  Navin could not make it to his cousin Aditya's graduation.  There was a time as recently as last year when airlines would try to accommodate the passenger on the next available flight.  I am not at all certain why the airline industry in the advanced United States operates so miserably.  There is also a certain skewing in the international airline industry towards the convenience and comfort of Middle Eastern, European and American travellers: international flights in these countries leave at humane hours, and in India, usually international flights take off at bizarre hours such at 1.40 AM.  Understandably irritable children, exhausted parents, stressed-out students are the order of the day for international travel from India westward.   

I toodled around Fort Wayne today and walked around part of the older downtown area.  Very pretty, except for a Catholic church that stated it was housed on a former burial ground of the Miami Indians - oh, the sacrilege.  At the airfield, there was a display of World War II aircraft and we could even climb inside the planes.  That was fabulous.  When I am out with the Weiss men climbing hills or walking in parks, I have to try to keep up with them: as I climbed inside one of the planes, it was quite joyous to be walking adroitly about as they were not made for tall people.  I used to think the not-keeping-up-with-the-family was a function of age; it is not, completely, it is also a function of height.

The Banyan is wonderful and we will celebrate its 25th anniversary on 27 August 2018.  We will celebrate at another branch on 28 August 2018; 27 August is the actual anniversary.  Friends such as Carolee Campbell, Emily McNellis, Srikrishna Vasireddy, Sangeeta Mathew, Mohan Arthur and Dr. Arjun have been breathtakingly magnanimous enough to donate money, and we will be able to provide biryani as well as new clothes for the staff + makeovers for the women.  Hooray!  It is an honor to work for the founders, who are visionary and ethical and jolly good fun.  We still need to raise Rs. 28 crores ($4 million) for a corpus from which we can draw interest for our unceasing expenses; I have asked all manner of corporate types and been unsuccessful.  Let us see.  

Well, I am going to head home and eat some watermelon.  Hope you have a good week.

Unw -



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