9/15/2001 While I haven't updated this page for far too long, September has been a month of big steps forward. I started back to work full time during Labor Day week! And this past Thursday, 9/13 I attended my first star party in more than a year and a half and had a telescope out under the stars for the first time in a year! For those not knowing, a star party is a gathering of amateur astronomers in a location with fairly dark skies. These gatherings run anywhere from a couple of days up to a week. This party was the Peach State Star Party hosted by the Atlanta Astronomy Club at a state park about 50 miles south of Atlanta. I wanted to take my big telescope (16" mirror), but it remains too heavy for me to carry. The mirror itself weights about 45 pounds. I have a smaller scope that I took out and I can't tell you how good it was to finally get back underneath the stars. Otherwise things slowly improve. Still can't gain any weight, but am holding at 145 pounds. We (Candace and I) took a trip to Columbus, Ohio over the Labor Day weekend and had a wonderful time seeing family. Our next trip will be a 12 day jaunt up to Quebec. We plan to fly into Hartford, Conn., rent a car and spend two nights at a B&B just the other side of the Canadian border north of Vermont. Then on to Quebec city where we have 4 nights in a B&B reserved. From there, it will either be a drive out to the Gaspe Peninsula or up to Sageunay Fjord and the city of Chicoutimi before heading back to Hartford and a flight home. Nothing much happening on the medical front. Have a meeting with the surgeon on October 2nd for a quick check and then no doctors (if all goes as it should) until I meet with the oncologist sometime in December.
9/23/2001 As we close out September there is some good news to report. First of all, this past week was my first full, 40 hour week at work I've been working 8 hour days for the past 2 weeks, but for one reason or another have not worked a full 5 day week. Finally did so this week. Was a bit tired by the end of the week, but made it! Next, last weekend was the Peach State Star Gaze - a local star party. I went down on Thursday, 9/13 with my small 8" telescope. Set it up and, for the first time in more than a year, looked through an eyepiece at the night time sky! Still too weak to handle the 16" telescope (the mirror alone weighs more than 45 pounds and the whole scope is close to 150 pounds), but it was good to get out under the night sky. I have sent in my registration form for the 2002 Winter Star Party in the Florida Keys and am REALLY looking forward to that week long star party. Finally, I actually put on a few pounds this week. Rather than having my weight hover around 145 pounds, it is now hovering around 148 pounds! All those big bowls of Breyer's Mint Chocolate Chip ice cream are starting to pay off. The next big step is our 12 day jaunt to Canada next month. Candace and I will be flying in to Hartford, CT and renting a car. The first 2 nights will be spent in a B&B just over the Vermont border in Canada. The next 4 nights will be in a B&B in the old city of Quebec. Not sure where we will go after that; thinking about driving out the Gaspe Peninsula or up the Sagunay Fjord. We will decide as we go along.