Happy Thanksgiving everyone. Thanks for reading. I am honored that many of you are still stopping by even though I haven’t been the most prolific writer during the past several months.
We are heading to Illinois to spend time with family, but have to make it a one day trip to get back to take care of the puppies which are six weeks old. So it will be a quick trip with about 5 hours spent on the road, but I have some reading with me to keep me occupied while my son drives. In fact, I am typing this right now from Interstate 74, but won’t be making this too long so I don’t get car sick.
Speaking of family, we (my wife, brother, and mom) went to visit my dad in the nursing home last evening. He has Alzheimer’s and had a major stroke this past weekend. He is essentially unresponsive and can’t swallow anything so he won’t be taking any medications or food. I doubt that they will be able to get water in him either. He has a living will so we won’t be doing anything heroic. I would expect it will only be a matter of days.
The good news is that he was pretty healthy until two years ago when the Alzheimer’s set in pretty hard. And he had been able to live at home until 6 weeks ago so these last stages have occurred fairly quickly and won’t be a long, drawn out process.
Moving on to a more pleasant note, here are the carnivals that have included articles from my blogs over the past few weeks. Again, I am having to catch up:
Tomorrow is Thanksgiving Day here in the United States, and I wanted to take a moment to reflect upon how incredibly fortunate my family and I are. Sure we have a few issues here and there, but for the most part, we are healthy, have food on the table, and a place to stay. My father has Alzheimer’s and is going downhill fairly quickly, but I am thankful for his long life and health until recently. So we will be celebrating our Thanksgiving day with family and enjoying football and lots of food.
Contrast to Honduras
Some of you may know that my college-aged daughter and I recently returned from Honduras where we spent 10 days on a mission trip. I am always struck by the contrast between this Third World country and the United States. The poverty and lack of infrastructure is simply amazing. Here is one view of city:
The mountains are very pretty and the people are nice, but everyday life can be a struggle. There are so many things that we take for granted like our infrastructure. The roads there are full of potholes and have mounds of dirt sitting in them in random places. Manhole covers have been stolen for recycling and the holes have tires in them to warn drivers.
We take security for granted as well. Many businesses have armed guards posted. It is shocking to say the least to see shotgun wielding guards at the Dunkin Donuts. When I first arrived last year, I thought there were a lot of prisons. It didn’t take long to figure out that razor wire was surrounding most of the buildings in the capital.
I was also surprised to learn that there is no mail service in Honduras. Most of the roads are unnamed so it is next to impossible to get a package to someone. Oddly enough, bills for electricity are placed on the door and have to be paid at the banks. (If the bills get delivered, can’t there be mail but maybe I’m missing something.)
I am also thankful for clean water that I can drink. Even the locals can’t drink the water because of the risk for disease. The poorest Hondurans seem to find some method of getting safe drinking water. One of the jobs can be seen in the picture at the left. This delivery method is motorized, but there are several who ride around in bikes delivering bottled water to the various neighborhoods throughout the city. I also found the little half liter bags of water that the kids drank quite fascinating.
Of course if you want to talk about risk when traveling to Honduras, you have to discuss the airport. I have learned that the international airport in the capital city of Tegucigalpa is one of the (if not THE) most dangerous and scary landings for pilots, and thus for the passengers as well.
If you don’t believe me, check out this video of a plane coming in for a landing. I want to know what is up with the people on the mountain?!
After that landing video, you understand why it is that I make sure that all my insurance coverage is up to date. I want to make sure that if anything happens to me either during the landing or while on the ground in Honduras that my family is well cared for. I always like to joke that I am worth more dead than alive, but for the next several years, it is a true statement.
Now life insurance isn’t the only insurance that I carry. Being in the United States and having many things and responsibilities means that I also carry disability insurance to protect income in the event of illness or injury and home owner’s insurance to protect property. Other types of insurance that should be considered are a liability umbrella policy and even professional liability insurance if you are in a higher risk profession.
Taking Stuff for Granted
I am incredibly thankful for being born into a wonderful country with plenty of opportunities for those who work hard. I am thankful for my health and my family. I am thankful for the safety and security and ease of travel in the United States. There may be problems in our country right now, but things could always be worse and I don’t want to take anything for granted.
So this Thanksgiving Day, for what are you thankful?