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"CHANGE of pace..."
...It is now January of 1999, the year we get to bounce...bounce...bounce (year of the rabbit) our way to the new millennium. My year in review is short and amazing... Remarkable in all that it brought me, and devastating in what it took away... The year of the tiger tore a change in my life forever.
On May 17, I ended my engagement with Lenore by marrying her in a combination western-japanese ceremony here in Aomori, Japan. My mother, along with Lenore's Mother, Father, Step-Father, and Grandfather came over from America to attend the wedding. My grandfather was recovering from a heart attack and could not attend. My Father was awaiting the birth of his second child, my sister, Annabel Lea.
On May 19, Annabel Lea (AKA "Urchin Head") was born. If you want to know more about my beautiful lil' sis, there will be an Annabel Lea page up in the near future. What needs to be said hear is that she is the prettiest thing I have seen since I first laid eyes on Lenore... Incidentally, Both "Lenore Amor" and "Annabel Lea Love" were named after Edgar Allen Poe heroins (although Annabel's name is spelled differently-- explained don her page). And Amor means Love (as does Lea)...Which makes me (this is not the first time for this joke)...
Moving right along, in late August my long time step-mother, Marylou Ledwell, passed away. no link will ever sum up the sadness which I type these letters. (Here is another picture of her) She was a beautiful woman, who I cared for as a mother. She had recovered from lung cancer once, but a the second time was too much. I did not even have time to jump on a plane and fly home... She did however, laugh and smile to the last day. She had sold her shop and had been traveling around the U.S. as she always wanted too. She had married her sweetheart of about 4 years, Lynn. And she drifted off just before heavy pain killers were becoming necessary. Her strength and grace were evident until the end.
I flew home a week later, and spent 3 weeks back in California. I spent a lot of time with my father, the one whose name appears throughout this little page of mine. My father and Marylou were still very close, even though he was now with Magy, and had sweet Annabel Lea to show for it. My father taught me a little more guitar, he took me up to Point Reyes for an Oyster Bake (as we had done with Marylou on many occasions). We talked about Marylou. We talk about 1719 Parker Street, the house I grew up in, now inhabited by strangers. We talked about "the Dog," lightnin' who had also passed away during this last year, and had shared so many of those days with me, my father and Marylou. This visit was the most important thing I have ever done.
The day I arrived back in Aomori I received a phone call at 6 in the morning, my father had had a heart attack. He was at Alta Bates...He was OK...the doctors said. There had been no damage to his heart ...they said. He had no insurance...the doctors knew. The told him it wasn't his heart. It was his shoulder....It was his gastric system...it was not his heart. They told him not to bother with the nitro pills, even though he was in constant pain with heart attack symptoms as classic as an old black and white drama, where the the trusty old farmer grabs his left arm, tightens his neck and falls into the corn field. On October 30, my mother's birthday, my father laid down at 5:00 p.m. to take a rest...he was tired of the pain. Sometime in the next hour he passed away of a heart attack. I fear and hope that this longing feeling will never go away...There is a memorial page set up for him on geocities. I wonder... If the internet goes to the afterlife (would you doubt it? do you think they use netscape up there? If not, I don't think I want to go.) let my father, Marylou, and my dog know that I miss them. And let them provide safety for me and whittle kitty, the last surviving inhabitants of 1719 Parker Street....
Now I play the guitar a lot. I am going to have my father's '57 Guild restored a bit. Not too much though. I am looking for a job. I am trying to put my father's life in order a bit...for me and my little sister. I am building a page for this, so please keep a watch for it as well... Anything further needs a new page. This section is over.