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Friday October 4, 2002 - It's Done!

We finally completed reparations and put our house on the market about the end of June, signed a contract three weeks later, and closed on August 26. We went to Las Vegas from the 28th through September 24 (no, we didn't spend a dime of house money). I went for morning Bagels with the old work troops for the last time on the 4th.

We took a contingent of our loved ones on a weekend Senator Highway trip on Saturday and Sunday the 7th and 8th. For anyone who has never done this, it is a spectacular drive from the Bumblebee turnoff at I-17, north of Black Canyon City into Prescott, AZ the back way. It is the old highway, unpaved and not very improved, from the days when Prescott was the capitol of Arizona and there was no Black Canyon Highway. The drive takes several hours and is characterized by narrow vertical ascents and descents, fording creeks, and an abundance of gorgeous flora and fauna. It is best driven in a 4-WD recreation vehicle, but the savvy will find it rewarding and very passable by passenger vehicle.

My 89 year-old mother loved the drive, and our 29 year-old daughter, Shari hated it. Too many bumps, thumps, and lurches, driving rain and altitude sickness. She's a city girl, but despite the roughness of the trip we know she'll be talking about it for years to come5.

On Wednesday, Sept. 11 we left for Mexico -- Bahía de los Angeles6 first and then Rio de la Concepción7, returning on October 2.

Today I wrote down Earthlink dial-in phone numbers for the following cities we'll be passing through on Interstate-40: Albuquerque, NM; Amarillo, TX; Fort Smith, Little Rock, and Batesville, AR; Memphis, TN.

We've finished it all, and there is nothing left. There are family members who disapprove of our move, some choosing silent hostility instead of dialog. But there is nothing we can do about such attitudes; we are nearing retirement and must be thinking about how we will spend the remainder of our lives. One thing we know for sure is that whatever our children do near the end of their careers, they will follow their own hearts rather than the wishes of their children. It is the way in life, and it is absolutely essential to mental health.

We are officially homeless. The time has come, and it is unavoidable. We leave tomorrow to deliver the cars to Memphis.

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Tuesday February 26, 2002 - Fast Forward

We're foot-loose and fancy-free! We've long wanted to make some basic changes toward our eventual retirement, and if there was ever a time, now is it! We have a plan:

1 - Prepare house for sale at optimum value.
2 - Sell house and temporarily store worldly goods.
3 - Go on a badly needed extended vacation.
4 - Deliver cars to Memphis, Tennessee.
5 - Secure a house in Memphis.
6 - Return and deliver our belongings to Memphis via truck.
7 - Secure employment.
8 - Look for retirement property in the boondocks.

It looks like a monumental effort, but we'll take it a day at a time.

God, we're going to miss the playa, though!

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Monday February 18, 2002 - Soul Mate Laid Off

Another dreaded Monday. My soul mate was laid off today at the Bureau of Medical Records. I guess they got tired of her parking on the street, and embarrassed about the thefts from their parking lot, so they got rid of the problem (until the next theft). When I was told there were more coming on Monday, I thought they were only talking about the two others in my company who got it today.

These last six weeks we've almost forgotten how lucky we've been over the last ten years. Looking back, we've had a remarkable run starting with our meeting on August 13, 1992.

What the hell, we've had Las Vegas hotel reservations for two weeks. We're going anyway.

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Friday February 15, 2002 - Laid Off

Fridays are getting as bad as Mondays. I was summarily laid off at work today. More coming on Monday, I am told. The business appears to be going down the tube. When the current corporate owners took over they dropped all of the local business that paid our bills in favor of funding over a year of concentrated development to be paid for via future federal government contracts. Typical corporate planning. Unfortunately, Nine-Eleven refocused government spending from replacing 25 year-old COBOL software systems running on expensive proprietary mainframes to security. The philosophy that kept our business healthy for the prior ten years? A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush.

Looks like Friday the 13th came on Wednesday this month. I wonder how I'm going to get through this with such a lousy job market. And then there is the bias problem against age. My soul mate comforts me, "Get hold of yourself," she says; "we're going to make it just fine. Besides, this gives you more time to work on your web site."

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Wednesday February 6, 2002 - The Ugly Americans

The Bureau of Medical Records continues to give my soul mate a hard time for parking on the street where she can keep an eye on her car from the building. Several other people in the office have reported their cars were stolen from the same parking lot in the last year. The Bureau of Medical Records has not acknowledged the loss of the Jeep in anyway. Hard liners. You'd think they'd have some feeling of responsibility, but they don't.

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Monday January 24, 2002 - Mom

My soul mate's mother went into the hospital this week for a medical procedure and almost died on the operating table due to excessive fluid in her lungs. It was touch and go for a few days, but she's stable now and doing better. We thought for a while that we were going to loose her.

After the last three, we're not looking forward to next Monday.

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Monday January 21, 2002 - Jeep Stolen

Martin Luther King Day. My soul mate almost took the day off, but she didn't. In the parking lot when she arrived at work she got a sickly feeling about the day, and almost turned around and came home, but she didn't. Our '92 Jeep Cherokee Laredo was stolen from the parking lot today. The Bureau of Medical Records (a private company) has a tall masonry wall between the parking lot and the building with a locked gate between, so there's no way to see the parking lot from the building. They should have had the lock at the gate into the parking lot -- it would have been a no-brainer -- but they didn't.

12:30 am - The jeep was found at 11:00 pm down on Fillmore Avenue, only two blocks from where our CRX3 was broad-sided on the way home from dancing on Friday night back in '96.

Our Jeep was vandalized, shot full of holes, and burned -- right there under a street light in the middle of the city. Someone in the neighborhood should have seen something, but they didn't.

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Thursday January 20, 2002 - Obituary (The Durango Herald 1)

Maynard Fox

Maynard Fox - May 22, 1913 to January 18, 2002 / Photo - Olan Mills Studio, Durango, Colo.

Memorial services will be at 2 p.m. Friday at Faith Presbyterian Church, 16000 N. Del Webb Blvd., Sun City, Ariz., for Maynard Fox, a former Fort Lewis College professor, who died Friday, Jan. 18, 2002, at Freedom Plaza Care Center, in Peoria, Ariz. He was 88. The cause of death was not disclosed.

Mr. Fox was born in Larned, Kan. He married L. Elva Koontz. He was a Lt. j.g. in the U.S. Navy during World War II. He taught at Fort Lewis College for several years, retiring in 1978. He also taught at the University of South Dakota for 17 years. He wrote a novel after he turned 802.

He was preceded in death by a daughter, Kathleen Pascale.

He is survived by his wife, L. Elva Fox; two sons, Carl Maynard Fox of Ashburn, Va. and Larry Fox of Phoenix, Ariz.; a sister, Marie Fern Myers of Ft. Scott, Kan.; 17 grandchildren and 6 great-grandchildren.

Memorial contributions may be made to the American Cancer Society, 2929 E. Thomas Road, Phoenix, AZ., 85016.

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Monday January 18, 2002 - Dad's Death

Dad died today. He had advanced prostate cancer and advanced heart disease, with arteries around the heart clogged to 99%. He managed to stay on hospice care for two years, but doesn't seem to have suffered much. He had a form of dementia caused by cloggage of arteries in the brain, and was always lucid but suffered much-reduced cognitive ability so that he no longer understood the seriousness of his illnesses. That was a blessing. I think he appreciated the people around him for who they were more in the last year than in the total of the rest of his life. He was 88 years old.

Mom is doing well after the long ordeal. I think it was a relief. She insists on leaving the assisted care center tomorrow and going home. They've been cramped up there for almost two years, and she's looking forward with relish to complete autonomy.

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Friday December 21, 2001 - Del Sol Wrecked

I went out to Fry's Electronics this afternoon to pick up a cable. I was back on the street at rush hour, around 5:30 pm. Driving in the right-hand lane approaching a red light at about 15 mph in front of Lowe's. The other two east-bound lanes were completely stopped, bumper to bumper except for one gap about ten feet wide. Some idiot in a large pickup came plowing through it perpendicular to traffic to reach Lowe's driveway and presented himself directly in front of me so suddenly that I didn't even have time to hit the brakes. I didn't even see him coming because he emerged from behind stopped cars waiting for the light. $5700 worth of damage to the '95 Honda Del Sol, $200 less than totaled. He gets two tickets, but that doesn't absolve his irresponsible driving.

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L. Fox



Memphis Blues


1Obituary copyright (c) 2001, The Durango Herald - posted without permission; photo by Olan Mills Studio, Durango, Colorado.

2The Long, Happy Life of Robin Stackpole: A Novel Of The Twentieth CenturyB. Click here to go to the Fan Club. The book is available at Reviews and/or copies may also be obtained via our Contact Us email address.

3It was a hit and run. He plowed into the CRX after sitting at a stop sign for several minutes while there were no other cars within half a mile. Our CRX was totaled, and he left a pile of five distinctive Jeep Cherokee grill and headlight pieces on the pavement where he hit us. The police should have checked with the body shops; finding the perp would have been a no-brainer -- but they didn't.

4Excursions: 02/08/28 - Las Vegas.

5This, in fact, has already proven to be true. Take a look at the picture on our Guest Articles index page.

6Excursions: 02/09/11 - Bahía de los Angeles.

7Excursions: 02/09/21 - Rio de la Concepción.



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Larry K. Fox

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