Yesterday I woke up to quite threatening skies - very unusual for the mornings here. So it seemed like a good day to hang out at the house. I washed my hair and dressed in jeans, and was all ready for the company that appeared throughout the day. Ivy never did make it, though I will get to meet her next weekend.
Rick Williams stopped by in the morning (he was 'in the neighborhood' shoeing horses) and definitely remembered taking Alex and Lisa riding - "it was nice to take athletic kids". However he hadn't realized how long ago that was, and so was surprised to discover how grown up they are now. I got a real kick out of hearing all of his bear stories, some from when he had a place over by Major Creek, and others from when he worked here and he and Neil had a number of exciting adventures. He's a great story-teller, and kept us quite entertained - though some of his actions sounded to me more likely to just piss off the bear... NOT a good idea in my book!
After lunch Elinor came over. She's doing a whole lot better a year post-surgery than when I helped her out last summer (in fact she had just gotten back on Friday after seeing the surgeon in Denver for a final check-up.) But while I had expected a full recovery by this point, the nerves are regenerating much more slowly. The spinal stenosis had been so bad, ultimately with no room at all for the nerves, that she had been numb from the waist down - which meant that everything had to start from scratch. As of her last visit (3 months ago?) she had only regained feeling to her thighs, but now that has advanced to below her knees. While most patients don't generally much see additional progress after a year, she still seems to be moving forward steadily, and the doctor says in her case (it was MAJOR MAJOR MAJOR surgery) it might take another year... or two. So while the slow pace is frustrating (and walking without feeling in her feet is difficult) at least she's still seeing progress.
In the late afternoon Other Doug came by to see Neil and catch Terry up on what's going on with the Board here. Lots of things in the works, though everyone is doing their best to keep changes and innovations to a minimum and in keeping with the basic conservation philosophy.
Saturday morning's sling use (only the 2nd time) worked fine - we're all surprised that Neil does not seem to mind it - but we had a near crisis in the afternoon (on use #3) when we were going to transfer him to the bed to change him. Terry and I were focused on making sure we didn't hit his head with the bar, and keeping his hands inside the hanging chains, etc. and didn't notice that he had hooked one foot under the bottom bar of the lift. So as Terry was raising him off the wheelchair all of a sudden he was coming out of the front of the sling. We of course could not lift him, and for a moment thought we would just have to lower him to the floor. But luckily Steve was upstairs, and he heard my call for help. Crisis averted! Last night during the 4th transfer I made sure to keep an eye on his feet (which did need to be moved twice!) and it went very smoothly. In fact I did very little (the aim of course being that Terry can ultimately do it all by herself) which was encouraging.
Now off to get the day started with a soak!