f2fb friend #166, flexibility, and NO beer! two out of three ain’t bad–

there can’t be a meeting between me and a facebook friend without me getting lost.  i have spent a lot of time at rest areas and freeway macdonald’s with a road atlas and my index cards with mapquest.com directions.  if my new years resolution is to see every one of my 335 facebook friends, that’s a lot of crying, driving in circles, and self-loathing. 

when i drove up to milwaukee i was actually pretty damn proud of myself. i was visiting f2fb friend #166 john gion who has 17 facebook friends in common with me.  i found his place quite easily.  that was before there was trouble:

john is a costumer who has worked for many theater and film production companies.  he has done work on many shows that my sons have been in.  he did the absolutely wonderful thing of asking after joseph and eastman when i arrived.

i told him i was taking him the milwaukee villa terrace museum of decorative arts.    i was sure that something like the milwaukee public museum or the pabst mansion would be too obvious.  we sallied forth in the direction suggested by mapquest. 

flexibility is the most important skill i’m learning this year.  because we got lost.  and i worried that i was disappointing john by not getting us to the new museum.  but john is one of the most flexible people, one who takes the world as it is presented to him.  he said “hey, we’re pretty close to the pabst mansion, let’s just go there” 

i was so relieved.  it was a beautiful tour of a mansion owned by the captain frederick pabst family.  john has displayed his costume collection in some of the 20,00 square foot home so it is nearly as if he was an owner.

too bad there wasn’t a pabst blue ribbon tasting after the tour. 

some people have asked me why i’m meeting all my friends and one part, small but significant, is that i am at an age where i am for the first time without children in the house.  and i know that one day i’m going to be a caretaker for my dad justin (f2fb friend #30) who was instititionalized by his wife barbara after my trip to tallahassee but has since gotten sprung.  i am at an in between phase. 

one of the things i admire about john gion is that he was a caretaker for his mother for many years before her death and now he acts as a caretaker for his father.  he has given up a lot to be there for him.  i hope to put him together with lon kiefer, f2fb friend #111 ,who has  a presence on facebook as defender of the caregiver, a resource for caregivers.

i left john at his apartment after a truly enjoyable afternoon–and i continue ahead to the next adventure. . .

next, andrew pearce helps me book flights for the international leg of the party–and i have news to share about the second half. . . .


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