Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Update on Many Things

We're back from Maine as of last night... and it was truly the trip from hell, I have to say. We should not have gone, not this year, not until Michael's weight is lower and his legs are better. But such a lot of things pushed us into trying... the hope that my mother would go, the desire for just a change of scene, wanting something to break out of the routine that we've been in for so long... wanting to see my sister... Lots of things. And so we forgot all the things that would be problems... and they were, pretty much every single thing. Michael was miserable the whole time; I was so worried about him that it was impossible to relax, and all in all, it pretty much has to go down as among the worst vacations of all time.

I'd also like to throw in a review of the Hilton Garden Inn in Springfield, MA, where we stopped off for a night. Overall, Hilton Garden Inns are a nice chain; we stay there a lot in transit. But this one should have come with a huge warning label... it is about 50 yards away from I-91, an extremely busy road which NEVER gets quiet, and the traffic noise is appalling. Otherwise the staff is nice, the hotel is ok, the rooms are reasonably clean... but there were no instructions on the cooling system, which didn't work quite right, and the floor in the shower in the handicapped-accessible rooms is lethal. It's also a long walk to where those rooms are... fine if you're actually in a wheelchair, but a different matter totally if you're walking.

So... back for a while on the actual supposed subject of this blog, FOOD.... how did we do? Very good and then kind of bad would probably be the best description. We did an excellent job of traveling low carb on the way up to Maine, due mostly to bringing our own food, and then a trip to Whole Foods in Massachusetts. And then we did reasonably well for a few days. However, as the misery started setting in, we started going out for lunch (crab rolls, in a bun) and an ice cream (not the thing to mention on a low-carb blog, but if you're in Damariscotta, ME, Round Top Ice Cream has been making their own since 1924, and it's fabulous. I am not really an ice cream fan, but the Ginger flavor is to die for.). Except for the last night, when my sister cooked and made potatoes, we had consistently low-carb breakfast and dinner. So, overall, not bad... although yesterday, on the last day driving bad, we were both so exhausted from the miserable hotel sleep and everything else that we just kind of bailed, had toast for a breakfast, a few fries with lunch, ice cream later... not good at all, but we'd reached such a state of exhaustion that I think it was only the carb blood sugar rush that was keeping things going.

We both feel physically awful from the higher carbs, too, I have to say. My stomach and digestive system haven't been happy in days. I don't think that we did so badly all in all, but the thing that I most learned from this is that, for me, there's no going back. I can't eat these things. I don't want to eat these things. And I've become even more extraordinarily picky about the quality of food than I'd thought.

And then the bad news. When we were in Maine, we found out that they'd decided to discontinue chemotherapy for my mother... she is too weak to tolerate it. So we were looking, probably, at a couple of months, unless her strength could be built up enough to return to therapy. A tiny flash of hope. But my sister called last night and said that the fluid is building up around her heart again, and they have decided not to drain it. Which means that we are most probably talking about a matter of days. I fly to Baltimore tomorrow morning.

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