June 21, 2010: Lazy Day on the River

The original plan for today was to be up and in to Dulles, Virginia first thing this morning to pick up the Ralstons from the airport.  That did not happen as their flight from Brazzaville in the Republic of the Congo to Addis Ababa in Ethiopa was two hours late yesterday causing them to miss their flight to Rome and on to Dulles.  So instead of today being a travel day, it is, instead, a day to hang out in Maryland and relax.  A nice change a pace indeed.

Since I was originally set to travel today and not tomorrow I am instead working today rather than tomorrow.  So I got up and got signed right in to work.

Brian drove down from Philadelphia today so that he could spend some time with John and I since we are all so close, which is a rarity.  It took him all morning to drive down, it is almost a three hour drive down depending on the route and traffic.  He arrived just before noon.

Today was not quite as hot as yesterday, but it is still rather warm for Maryland in June.  Definitely not hot like Irving but the humidity is really high and we are really feeling it.

The morning, up until noon-ish, was really nothing but me working for the office.  Then, round about twelve thirty, John, Brian and I went out and took John’s 1,800 hp Pratt and Whitney jet turbine powered racing boat out for a trip over to Deep Creek for lunch.

First we took several laps around the Magothy River hitting around one hundred and ten miles per hour which is, by far, the fastest that I have ever been in a boat, let alone a tiny, little balsa wood boat on a river!  Likely the fastest that I have ever been is around fifty-five miles per hour in a small speed boat out on one of New York’s Finger Lakes.

After speeding around for a little bit we went over to Deep Creek for lunch.  I have not had a chance to eat at Deep Creek in many years.  Definitely not for three and quite possibly not for four or five years!  Back when John lived at “973”, just up the street from Deep Creek, we would eat there all of the time.  It was our usual haunt and we even walked there at least once.

When we tried to dock at Deep Creek we realized that John had accidentally left the electric, slow-speed propellers in the water and the high speed racing across the Magothy had ripped the port propeller off.  That made maneuvering in Deep Creek rather difficult and we had no real way of getting close to the dock.  The only chance that we had was making several runs at it with Brian attempting to grab the dock as we passed.  That did not work so well.

We ended up using the tide to push us slowly in so that we would not cause a bigger disaster by crashing in at high speed.  Then we had lunch.  It took us so long to get out to Deep Creek, though, that John had a post-lunch conference call that he needed to be on and he was on that all while Brian and I were eating.

I have discovered that the velvet cream crab soup at Deep Creek is my favourite.  I don’t think that I have ever had it before, but I am certain that I will be having it again.  Wow that was some amazing soup.

Getting out of Deep Creek was a little bit of a challenge as we didn’t have our steering propeller.  We had to maneuver the boat against the dock by hand and literally “shove off” to get far enough from the dock to fire up the turbine “safely.”  Then we took a run with the boat going over one hundred and twenty miles per hour during which Brian used his iPhone to grab a video of me riding in the back of the boat.  It starts off slowly and you can see the plume of water form behind me and get bigger and bigger as we go.  It was very cool.  John kicked on the afterburners too which were insanely hot.  Even at those high speeds the back of the boat is crazy hot from the turbine.

We got back to the house and I got right back to work.  Brian hung around for another hour or so before getting on the road back north.  We had some good opportunity to get some work done.  It was a good use of the time today.  The Ralstons being stuck an extra day ended up working out very well for me both that I got to hang out here and that I got some much needed rest before another long day of driving.

Today, the Tocco clan, including Dominica and Liesl, went to Enchanted Forest Water Safari in Old Forge, New York for the day.  The Water Safari was not there when I was a child, but I do have fond memorize of going to Enchanted Forest with my parents when I was very, very little.  I remember walking through the woods, taking the little train that ran around the perimeter and going on the very small ferris wheel out in the woods.  It was not a fancy amusement park but it was well suited to little kids.

While out at Enchanted Forest today, Liesl developed a fever and was not feeling well at all.  Once they realized how hot she had become they left the park right away and headed back to Frankfort.

Mostly we just relaxed this evening at the Nicklin house.  It could not be too wild of an evening since I have to get up quite early tomorrow and get on the road.  The Ralstons are still on target to get in to Dulles tomorrow morning so the original plans for today are just pushed off until tomorrow.

We stayed up probably a bit too late this evening talking.  It was not all that late, though, I probably headed off to bed around about midnight or maybe even a little earlier.  I have to get up at roughly five thirty tomorrow which is not terrible but I have been working pretty hard on making up for lost sleep so even though it is not that early I still need to be careful not to push it too much.

I have been reading, and quite enjoying, the business classic “The Peter Principle” from the late 1960s which lead to another classic that I really like, “The Dilbert Principle.”  It is a pretty short book which I plan to finish reading this week.  I’ve wanted to read it for a decade and just never got around to doing so.  So I am happy to finally be getting it out of the way.

Quite late, probably around eleven, Dominica called to tell me that Liesl’s fever had gotten quite bad and that she thought that she needed to go to the hospital.  Dominica gave her a cold bath to bring her temperature down but she was way too warm and we did not feel that it was worth the risk of having them go to sleep in case she got warmer during the night.

So not long before midnight Dominica took Liesl to the emergency room in Utica.  They had made it into urgent care but urgent care would not see a child under two years old so that time was all lost and they had to go to the emergency room anyway.

It was a busy night at the hospital and it took a very long time before they were able to see Liesl for more than a few minutes.  They took her temperature right away and it was one hundred and four point six!  No wonder she has been unhappy all day.  They gave her some Motrin and then she was stuck waiting for hours before she really got to see a doctor.

Once she finally did get to see a doctor, they determined that she had a double ear infection.  Poor little girl.  No wonder she is not happy.  She got some medicine and her fever was down a bit – to one hundred and two point five – before they came home early in the morning.

There is also a virus going around that causes a high fever and may be the cause of the fever rather than the ear infections.  That is expected to pass in another twenty four hours or so and is nothing to be concerned about.  If it is the virus that caused her fever then she is lucky that that caused her to get checked out for the ear infection when it might have gone unnoticed otherwise.

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