People say I’m crazy
I got diamonds on the soles of my shoes
Well that’s one way to lose
These walking blues
Diamonds on the soles of your shoes

Excerpt from Paul Simon’s tune called “Diamonds On The Soles Of Her Shoes”

It’s almost been a year since the surgery. The only real reminders are the faded jagged scar that runs about twelve inches down the center of my chest, the numbness in my left tit and the occasional shortness of breath if I try and push it too far. Every now and then my left ankle gets a little numb and discolored, the result of some veins being harvested to be later sewn into my chest. Small price to pay to have a still beating heart.

Since then, I’ve gone back to work and then subsequently decided everybody would be much better off if I chucked it all and embarked on things that were much more important to me. I can’t say I regret my decision but some of my friends, well, lets just say they think I’ve gone a bit over the edge. Some inquire if I’m getting bored yet but so far I’d have to answer that with a resounding “No!” There are still too many books to be read and too many weeds to be pulled from the garden. There are still way too many days to be spent with my kid and rediscovering in simple ways that there’s still some little boy left in me just lying in wait for some adventure no matter how small.

And down on the beach
the sandman sleeps
Time don't fly
it bounds and leaps

Excerpt from John Prine’s fine tune called Storm Windows

As is my wont, I was sitting around with a couple of my friends nursing a few beers awhile ago when some inspiration seemed to pop into my head. The proverbial light bulb went off and I was struck with an idea that seemed so awesome I just had to follow through.

It occurred to me that over the last ten years or so, I’d had more heart attacks (four at last count) than I did vacations and through each one, my friends were there to come through for me. Whether it was running me back and forth to the doctors, putting me up at their place or doing some simple errands, every time I needed something they were there to help, no questions asked. I had to do something to repay their kindness.

So I jumped online, did my fair share of research and booked a five bedroom house on the Gulf Coast of Florida for a week in mid-October. I figured it was my turn to pick up the tab and all they have to do is make it down there and maybe pay for a meal or two. If I’d have tried to offer them money, they’d have thrown it back in my face. Sometimes memories are way more important than money anyway and that’s what I’m trying to build. Just my way of saying thanks.

This might sound I bit gruff but when I mentioned it to Anna and told her this was an “adults only” trip she was a bit disappointed. It’s not that she wouldn’t fit in or anything and my friends would love to have her along (or so they claim) but still, I had my reasons. See, after all these years, I got to seeing myself as just being “Anna’s Dad”. While that’s certainly not a bad thing I just wanted one week to myself with my friends where I could just be “Bob”.

If that makes me selfish, then so be it. I’ll be getting back to being “Anna’s Dad” soon enough and we'll both be better off for it.

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