130 Leagues Over the Asphalt

T – I – R – E – D.

Went back to Roanoke on Saturday. My mom’s doing great: she can move both her leg and arm now, and on Sunday took a few steps (with a great deal of support). I’m told this is still Gold Medal performance, and my optimism was repeatedly fed this weekend. nanoreid was there for a bit, and I got to say hi to Ginny and Ian as well. Starr bought my mother a knitting loom which can be fastened to a solid surface, and now my mom can indulge her addiction one-handed for the duration!

Roanoke felt a little odd, there are buildings and shops which weren’t there last time I passed through – a bit like hearing an old song on the radio and finding an entirely new chorus after the second stanza. I took a hotel room there Saturday night to save us the drive to and from shrewlet‘s offered crash space in Blacksburg, but while the room was huge, the bed was hard as a plank, and we slept poorly for folks who would be driving 204 miles home. Route 460 was a beautiful, tranquil drive, though. I’m sold on that road for now.

Yesterday we woke too early, and headed over to spend lunch with Starr’s mom, then the afternoon at Amy’s with the gamer group. Her mom was going to gas grill the food, but after the gas loop rusted away at a touch, we went with good old charcoal, and lunch was yummy. I now know where Starr gets her habit of cooking a regiment’s food for a few people, and felt guilty leaving before I could consume a second hamburger.

While the afternoon was sold as a combination grilling / gaming event, I’m not sure anyone was really into the gaming, and after a few hours of excellent chatting and cattching up, we left to get me some badly needed quiet time. I developed yesterday something that feels much like my old migraine headaches, something which comes in short, searing pulses then goes away for a half-hour or so. (One of the first things Starr did when hearing about that was to check me for stroke indicators – of which I seem to have none.)

In geek news, the Mars Phoenix robot probe has a Twitter account. Andy Ihnatko referred to the account as cosplay for rocket scientists, but I’m enjoying keeping up with what the probe’s doing (or at least what it was doing 15 minutes ago – speed-of-light lag, y’know). Some quick Googling finds images taken by the Mars Recon Orbiter of Phoenix on the way down (Phoenix Down?) which means that we Earthlings not only managed to hit a target scores of millions of miles away, we got a picture of it from another camera that had previously done so under our instruction. [T]hese are the things that hydrogen atoms do when given 13.7 billion years. – Carl Sagan

So, yeah. Probably another early bedtime tonight, which is a shame because I wanted to get some WoW levelling in. With luck, the rest of the week will go a little easier on me!

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  • anterus says:

    Route 460 was a beautiful, tranquil drive, though. I’m sold on that road for now.

    I don’t think I’ve ever had any trouble with 460 between Roanoke and Richmond/Norfolk, except that it’s 30-60 minutes slower than 81/64. Plus, last time I used it, I ended up avoiding a nasty accident on 64, which never hurts. Pretty much all the trucks’ll and most of the cars will use 64, which makes 460 just a lot less crowded, every time I’ve been on it.

  • ranchonmars says:

    If I had the ability, I’d happily offer you guys crash space. (I’ve *got* to move out.) I’m glad to hear your mom’s doing better. If it’s any consolation, a good friend of mine close to her age has had three strokes, including one that left her in an extended coma, and she’s almost fully recovered. In fact if you didn’t know she’d had them, you would never guess. Strokes are scary, serious things, but with the progress your mom is making, I’d hold lots of hope. Let me know if there’s anything I can do for you down here, okay? ::hugs::

  • stori_lundi says:

    Mars Phoenix Twitter!! AWE-SUM!!!

  • ptownhiker says:

    I’m glad y’all came out on Sunday. The game just sometimes…doesn’t take hold. At the next session, though, you’re gonna make Rio, and probably find out what this money is being used for.

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