Jul. 10th, 2007

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I've been home several days, but hadn't taken time to report on the results of the road trip, though a lot of you are aware already. On the 4th of July after I got off work, I drove to Elgin, IL where I stayed at the home of Drew and Renee Scheeler, who were hosting a 4th of July BBQ. While I didn't get to see any particular fireworks show, driving along I-90 at dusk was fun, because I could see several shows at once from a distance! The next morning I headed out with Kevie, the person who volunteered to ride along. We went to the hospital to pick up [profile] lorddragon65, who was ready to go. First I swung by the Iowa Toll office- I'd taken the Camry, and forgotten to grab my I-Pass. I decided that dropping $50 for a new one was probably not a bad idea, as it would mean that no matter what car I take to Chicago, Ohio, or wherever there would be an I-Pass in it. Indiana and Ohio are behind the curve- most of the other states who do toll roads take the I-Pass, but they still don't. In fact, I used the one I already had on my trip out to D.C. earlier this year. Our next stop was the place where [profile] lorddragon65 had been living to pick up the things he was going to bring with him. I packed and repacked to make sure it all fit, but had to leave behind his television because there was NO WAY it was going to fit in the car with the rest of his stuff. Since it was my call to leave the thing, I told him that I'd buy him a new television, so our next stop after that was at Best Buy where I found an itty bitty (7" on the diagonal) flat screen TV. Perfect! We then hit a Boston Market for lunch, and headed out towards Ohio on I-80. We were held up in construction east of Chicago, and I think it may have added as much as two hours to our trip, but I can't be positive. We arrived at the facility at about 8 pm, and looked around for the charge nurse to start the admission proceedings. While the charge nurse was talking to him, I worked on unloading the car and stopped to talk to the residents while I was doing so. I wanted to be positive that the place we were dropping him off at was a good one. Without exception every person I talked to said approximately the same thing- that the first few weeks are really hard, but especially once you start seeing results and making friends, it gets easier. [profile] lorddragon65 is so sociable that I can't imagine that he won't make a ton of friends really quickly. I spotted some techie geek boys who were about his age (a little younger actually) right off, and introduced myself and let them know that he was moving in. Before I got back to his room, another resident, a woman, had dropped in and was flirting furiously with him! She also scoped out Kevie, and he gallantly flirted back. I flirted outrageously with everyone I ran into- it got them to open up about the facility, which was my main concern, but also was a shot in the arm for a lot of them I suspect. Sucks to be stuck in a facility, but this one wouldn't have been so bad with younger people in it. He'd missed dinner, so Kevie and I ran out to the local Subway shop and picked him up a sandwich for dinner. We didn't leave Ohio til about 11 pm, and so didn't pull into Elgin til about 5 in the morning. On the other hand, we got to watch the sunrise, which was kind of cool. I got a semi-panicked e-mail from him night before last because he was told that he was scheduled for 2 showers a week, and thought that meant that was all he could have. There were a couple of other minor concerns, so I called the facility and talked to the charge nurse about them, and she went down to talk to him and clear things up. I hope things are going more smoothly now. Some of the issues I'm sure came from the fact that he was essentially admitted on a holiday weekend- yes, it was a Thursday night, but a lot of the regulars were no doubt off for a few days. The one difficulty is that while there is WiFi in the building, it doesn't reach his room, and he's not too pleased about that. On the other hand, it means that he needs to take his laptop down to a rather main area and hang out there with it, so he ends up socializing while he's at it, and that's not a bad thing. The bad thing is that I suspect that it's going to cause problems with his Vonage box when that get set up again. The switch they're using is full, and I suspect that there's no way that the facility is going to drop $$ on a bigger switch. I looked up the kind they have- it's a Cisco. Then I trolled around Cisco's site. Turns out that they have an in-kind donation program for non-profit organizations. While the facility is not a non-profit, it occurs to me that a resident's association could be developed to fit the guidelines of a non-profit organization. I'm going to look into that angle and see what transpires. Helping people who are medically challenged and cut off from family and friends by distance might be just up their alley.

Off tonight with M2 to take him to see Ratatouille. Then the midnight showing of Harry Potter for me. Switching back over to a night schedule for my next scheduled night tomorrow night, so once again I'm trying to stay up all night.

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