Tuesday, August 23, 2011

August 22nd, 2011 - He's still there? / Abandoned Diners

A beautiful sunset over Long Island last Saturday

Well it’s 1AM and I’m still wide awake…at least my mind is. I had a long day today, but it was a good one overall, busy but good. It seems that my mind just never stops going and if I could do without sleep I’d still probably not get in everything I want or need to do, especially during these fast-dwindling days and nights of summer. I tell ya, there’s something to be said for the routine a job gives you!

He’s still there!

Today I visited my ex-student and current family member Arnoldo, who I first told you about a couple of months ago. The last time I saw Arnoldo was towards the end of the school year back in June. He had successfully fought off that infection he’d had and was getting the much-needed treatment for his lupus, finally, after a seven week stint in the hospital. I got a text from him on July 8th telling me he was being released from the hospital, which was one of the best things I’d heard in a long time.

Ever since, I’ve settled into my own summer life, assuming that all was okay with Arnoldo, but I was wrong. His sister Mayela sent me an email the other day asking how I was doing and in my response I asked about Arnoldo. Arnoldo had called me himself a couple of weeks ago, but I regrettably neglected to call him back! In her answer she said he was “still in the hospital.” Still? I was confused.

As things turned out, Arnoldo did get out of the hospital, but it wasn’t for long. After two returns and maybe a week’s worth total of days at home, the poor guy has remained in Stony Brook Hospital battling not only the sicknesses that plague him, but the anguish and frustration that goes along with all of it. I went to the hospital today.

I think my visit helped out at least a little. Mayela had told me he’d been very down the past couple of days and he seemed fine, almost happy, during the time that I was there. During the middle of my visit, an orderly came in to take him down for a small, quick surgical procedure that he didn’t know was coming. His fiancée Jill had just brought us all some Red Mango frozen yogurt (delicious!) and we were enjoying it and some good conversation when the she showed up. I was annoyed that they had come in at such a time, as Mayela and Jill had just gotten there, but it was just another day in the life for the weary Arnoldo.

I know that yesterday I spoke of my own upcoming colonoscopy and my cuts and bruises from last week, but you know…I’m pretty lucky compared to this brave young man. I mean, he just turned 25 years of age and he knows words that no one his age should know (I’d repeat some of them now, but they’re all medical related and I can’t remember a one of them!). He mentioned getting spinal taps and other painful-sounding procedures and my empathetic nature just got the best of me thinking of what he’s got to go through every single day.

Please, I know that none of you know Arnoldo personally, but if you’ve read this far and feel for the guy, I ask that you remember him in your prayers or your thoughts. He is someone I and a lot of other people admire and he could certainly use a little positive energy sent his way. He and Jill have postponed their October wedding until next year, when hopefully Arnoldo will be able to enjoy it as he should, pain and worry free. I hope so! Thanks!

A Rant for Today

Before I had this blog I used to have another one called “Rants.” It was a series of rants about the things in life that irk me, and there are a lot! At the moment I am undergoing yet another reexamination of my life and where it’s going, as I alluded to yesterday, and one of the things I’m working on is learning to focus. I have a history of spreading myself too thin and getting involved in too many things all the time, which causes me nothing but distress and a feeling of dissatisfaction.

I want to narrow my focus in hopes of a better success and a happier future, and so even though that blog is still live, I think I may just shut it down and integrate it into here. I hardly ever go to it anymore anyway, and I’ve still got things I like to rant about. So I’ve decided that whenever I have a rant, be it big or small, I’m just going to put it here on “John’s World.” After all, ranting gets you nowhere anyway except to release some steam, and including a rant or two here and there helps me to narrow that focus just a little. So here is the first official rant of “John’s World”:

Diner Abandonment

The other night, two friends and I met at a local diner for dinner. For those of you unlucky enough to not have any diners where you live, you are truly missing out. It’s amazing to me how at any time of the day or night you can order from such a varied menu of dishes. You could order a cheese omelet or a beef brisket at three in the morning, or a roasted chicken for breakfast if you wanted. I have no idea how they do it, but they do and it’s incredible.

Any-who, diners are also great places to meet up with people you don’t often get to see. They’re great for relaxed, conversational meals with good friends, at any time of the day or night, and quite often the conversation lasts well past mealtime. Coffees or sodas are refilled and the enjoyable chatter continues, that is until the check comes…

During your meal at a diner, the waitresses and the busboys are continually monitoring the table for water or coffee refills, extra napkins, and clearing out emptied plates. Once the bill comes however, they’re simply done with your table, only to be seen from afar. You and your friends are left to sit and chat over whatever dirty dishes, napkins and glasses were left there before the check came.

This happened the other night, as me and my friends sat for almost an hour after we’d finished our meal, enjoying friendly conversation in the mostly empty place. What had been constant visits to our table by the busboy and the waitress during the meal suddenly stopped once the check had been placed on the table, leaving us to talk amongst the filth.

The same thing happened two weeks ago in another diner when I met my friend Rita for lunch. It’s just weird to me how they could suddenly ignore you at that point. I tell ya, if you work at a diner, here’s a piece of advice for you:

Don’t ignore your diners once they’ve finished their meal. Clean up after them, and they can continue what is obviously a pleasant time in your establishment. Who knows, maybe they’ll even order another drink or something while they chat, but they can’t if you don’t come back to the table. And if you did clean there table, it’ll only add to the positivity of their experience in your diner and they may even throw you a big tip, or better yet, they might come back!

They're probably gonna kill me, but during my hospital visit today, I played with Cam Wow and took some funny pictures:

Our little patient!

The worst and best of Mayela, lol

Jill, Arnoldo's fiancee....isn't she purdy?

Well, it’s almost two and that’s all she wrote for this evening. As ever, thanks for reading, especially this far! I’ll catch ya next time and until then, enjoy!

No comments:

Post a Comment