Saturday, April 17, 2021

Three Beautiful Things 04/14/2021:Back to the Nook, Easy Times with Longtime Friends, Lunch with Colette

 1. I leaped into the Sube, with all its new belts and new battery and new tires and and other new stuff and cruised out to Kingston and picked up Ed. We hit the road and, as we had decided ahead of time, we stopped at the Breakfast Nook in Coeur d'Alene for our morning meal. I didn't keep close track of what's been happening at the Breakfast Nook, but it sure looked to me like the place had been spiffed up since my last visit in early 2020. 

I ordered a chicken fried steak and it was tender, perfectly breaded, and delicious. I always enjoy the Breakfast Nook's hash browns. I like the way they're grated, wide and long, and they always come out of the kitchen perfectly crispy on top and are never dry. It was really fun to eat here again and I'm looking forward to possibly renewing a former tradition when I'd worship at St. Luke's and go to the Breakfast Nook afterward for a midday breakfast.

2. Ed and I arrived at the Wildhorse Casino not long after Mike got there. We each had rooms reserved, checked in, put our things away, and then met in Ed's room to celebrate being together again by sipping on some Black Velvet Toasted Caramel Whiskey. We immediately fell into a first-rate bull session and got our short vacation off to a perfect start. 

We reunited for another excellent session later that night. We met at the Wildhorse Sports Bar for some beer and onion rings and continued our long tradition of story telling, kidding around, talking about serious matters, and superb and easy conversation. 

3. I left the casino around 2:30 in the afternoon to meet Colette at the Oregon Grain Growers Brand Distillery. Because a few years ago Colette moved to Walla Walla, she and I have been able to meet up when the guys and I have our getaways in Pendleton.

We met at a table outdoors. Colette gave me books she thought I'd enjoy, a wonderful gift.  We immediately launched into a bazillion things to talk about, ranging from family, work, and graduate school to Debbie living in New York, the challenges of parenthood, and movies -- and more. We split a superb kale and pear salad and a small pizza, the Marilyn Monroe which combines white citrus cheese, Mozzarella cheese, artichokes, and artfully placed chocolate kiss looking dabs of ricotta cheese. The food was superb and enhanced our fascinating conversation.

At some point in our time together, our server told us that another party had reserved out table and would be arriving shortly. No problem. We settled up and headed toward an asphalt trail above the Umatilla River and started to take a walk.

We hadn't walked long and I started to feel winded. This happens to me sometimes if I try to walk after I've eaten. I asked Colette if we could stop for a while and sit. We did. As we continued to talk, I was suddenly feeling fatigued, certain that the warmer weather and having been driving for several hours combined to wear me out a bit. 

Later on -- maybe that night, maybe the next day, I noticed that I was a bit short of breath just walking around -- like when walking around in the casino. 

I had also been noticing that I had a little more build up of water retention in my lower legs and I wondered if I might be carrying some water weight in my midsection. I feel bigger than I think I should. 

I'm making note of these things here in my blog because if they are signs of my kidney disease having worsened a bit, I want to remember where I was, what I was doing, and what the signs were when I noticed it.

I have an appointment scheduled in May with my kidney doctor, but I'm going to call his office on Monday and see if we should meet earlier. In the meantime, I plan on doing some walking, seeing if this short-windedness continues, monitoring my lower legs and ankles, and continuing to drink plenty of water. 

Again, I'm writing about this change I perceived so I have a record of when it started happening. At the moment, I'm not alarmed, but I also don't want to act like everything's going along as usual if it's not. This kidney disease is tricky business for me because I have known about it for about sixteen years and haven't, as of yet, experienced symptoms -- but I've listened to my doctors tell me what to look for. I might be experiencing some of them. 

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