Saturday, June 20, 2009

Off to Dallas

Well..for only a few days to cover the conference that officially establishes a new Anglican province made up of dissaffected Episcopalians. Problem is, the archbishop of Canterbury doesn't recognize this group but he may at some point. Anyway, on Sunday night, I fly from Baltimore to DFW to lodge with a reporter friend from the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and share a rental car as we spend 3 days in Texas. For me, it will be a chance to greet tons of old friends as many of these folks are people I knew in seminary or in various churches I've been in along the way.
As soon as I heard of this trip, I dashed to Kinkos to print 200 postcards advertising my upcoming book on the Episcopal Church of the Redeemer and Graham Pulkingham which had a working title of "Power and Desire: The Rise and Fall of Christian Community and Charismatic Renewal." We've re-tooled that to a new title: "Days of Fire and Glory: The rise and fall of a charismatic community" which is not as far-reaching but may be more accurate.
The photo is of a happy Veeka lounging on her new bed with the kitty who sleeps on it every day. My right arm is still terribly sore now that I have begun physical therapy and I'm still on pain meds. I've worked 2 six-day weeks in a row and I'm pretty weary.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Free from the sling

Although the photo shows me still in the darned thing, the orthopedist gave me the green light Monday to shed the sling just short of a month of wearing it. That last week, my arm was cramping quite a bit with it on plus I was starting to drive by myself and had to take it off while in the car (one gets a ticket if you're driving with one of those things on). So I am well into physical therapy at this point.
This week has been crazy with daily stories zinging me every day. I am flooded with work. Monday was a press conference with abortionist LeRoy Carhart who was a close friend of George Tillers and was in town to give a eulogy for him at a memorial service. Turns out I had Carhart nearly to myself and got to ask him quite a bit about life as a doctor who aborts babies in the third trimester. I really blanched when he told me about the suicidal woman whose fetus he aborted at 30 weeks, as Veeka was born at 32 weeks. I learned later when I interviewed a gynecologist, abortion often makes women more suicidal, not less. Near the end of the interview, however, I did refer to that thing in the womb as a "baby" at which point Carhart, his wife, daughter and about 10 other people in the room started looking at me strangely as to ask "how did she sneak in"? We got into quite a discussion of where God stands on abortion; a little bit of which I am repeating for my June 11 "Stairway" colum.
Anyway, on Tuesday, it was announced the Tiller clinic was shutting down for good so I had to do another story. And today, there was a shooting at the Holocaust museum so I had to drop everything and do a story on the Jewish reaction to it all. Fortunately I had tons of Jewish contacts - and their cell phones - in my files so I was able to throw a story together within a few hours.
But all these stories mean I've been late in picking up Veeka at the daycare. The poor child has been traumatized by all the thunderstorms we've been having at dusk. And yesterday a huge tree branch from the abandoned house next door came crashing down into my back yard, covering one-quarter of it. Fortunately the bank that owns the house agreed today to send someone with a chainsaw to remove the mess. Amazingly, none of my phone or electric lines went down with it.
One bright spot have been these meals brought to me by members of a small group I belong to, since it's difficult for me to put together a full meal with my right arm in this much pain. A succession of casseroles, salads, chips and cookies have been showing up each evening. It's been lovely every night getting different stuff that I don't have to cook. Tonight we got the best gooey caramel and chocolate Haagen-Daz ice cream. Slurp.