We are delighted to spend Presidents’ Day weekend at The Sea Ranch, as we do most years. Last year, of course, Dick was recuperating in Honolulu after his cardiac arrest and subsequent triple bypass surgery. He spent his 76th birthday there with two of his longtime friends, Connie Raub and Cora Johnson, who arrived from their homes in Colorado and Nevada, respectively, to care for him when I had to come home to teach.
Now, on his 77th birthday, he is stronger and feeling better than he has in years, and we’re once again in one of our happiest places on our side of the Pacific Ocean (though, of course, we love the Hawaii side of the Pacific, too). We celebrated Dick’s day on the drive to The Sea Ranch with crab sandwiches and good clam chowder at Fisherman’s Cove in Bodega Bay. And as we drove north on Highway 1 toward Casa Pacis, the sweet cottage on the coast where we’ve been fortunate to stay many times, we were tickled to celebrate another birthday together. It’s another marker in this journey back to wellness for Dick, this birthday. And we are so grateful for it.
We were also tickled that one of my journalism students, Express editor-in-chief Rose Vega, wanted to do a story about Dick’s Great Heart Adventure, as I’ve called it. (The Express only does stories with ties to Sacramento City College.) It turns out, of course, that Dick’s two rescuers do (as followers of this blog know)—Salesi Maumau, who performed CPR on Dick at the airport, is a former City College Panthers football player and student, and Claudio Alvarado, the RN who tended to Dick at the airport, now teaches nursing at City College.
That the Express editors decided to post the story on Dick’s birthday today tickles us. (Great job, Rose! And yes, I’m a wee bit biased in more than one way.) It is the cherry on top of our already bountiful sundae of a year, following the first anniversaries of his rebirth (Jan. 15) and triple bypass (Jan. 24). The good stuff just keeps coming!
Happy birthday to you, dear Dickie. And as the song often ends… and many more!