Train Whistle

My family has a history of kidney disorders & Dalia was showing some indications that she might be suffering from an issue. Out of an abundance of caution we took her down to a specialist at the Pittsburgh Children’s Hospital. I dropped Jaclyn and Dalia off at the front door and parked my car in the underground garage, I jogged through the parking lot, hopped over a couple of stairs and glided over to the elevator and pushed floor 3.

On floor 1, the door opens and a woman pushing a child in a wheelchair enters. The kid looks at me with a generous smile and happiness in her eyes, her legs are in an awkward position and she has a tube coming from her throat connected to an oxygen tank. She seems very happy to see me and I tell her how her smile brightened my day.

I got off on the third floor and there was a spectacular model train exhibit for the kids to enjoy. It was enclosed in plastic glass, but kids could push buttons to make lights flash, cars move, and another button to make the train whistle blow. An autistic boy was pushing the train whistle button about 65 times per minute, it was giving him tremendous enjoyment, I stopped and watched and wondered how long he could possibly keep this up or if someone was going to intervene. I couldn’t determine who his parent was, he just kept at. I moved on, turned the corner down the hall and the whistling gradually faded out.

We got called back to see the doctor, a mother with a beautiful healthy looking girl was in the room next to us. Our appointment went very well and we left feeling confident about the plan moving forward to monitor the situation, but were reassured that there was not an immediate danger. As we were leaving, the mother of the beautiful healthy child was visibly upset, her appointment was obviously more complicated.

We were able to leave the hospital and all the people and problems were able to fade out like the train whistle, but I have since felt overcome with good fortune. It is easy to get fixated on the things I do not have or the challenges of replacing a sewer pipe, but we are very, very, very lucky people.

We’re really enjoying the company of my Father-In-Law Jim, sister-in-law Laurie, and her magnificent baby Sidney. We rode the incline up to the top of Mount Washington (which used to be known as Coal Hill). Afterwards, we enjoyed a lively meal at the Hofbrauhaus (pics below). We listened to the Mad Bavarian (an older gentlemen dressed in traditional German garb with a keyboard) crank out the hits of German yesteryear with plenty of yodeling sprinkled in the mix!

Hobrauhaus-Pittsburgh-Location2-225x300 pretzelgirl2-200x300

We wrapped up the night with a quick driving tour through the Oakland section of town where the University of Pittsburgh & Carnegie Mellon are situated.

Two nights ago, we let our dog Toby out late at night and he took longer than normal to come back inside. Jaclyn grabbed the flashlight and pointed it at the back yard and saw a large buck with a big set of antlers standing there, Toby was 6 feet away from it staring right at him. There are a million different scenarios that could have happened at this moment, but fortunately, the best one occurred. Toby finally responded to Jaclyn’s call and ran inside, the buck just continued to hang out like nothing happened.

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