Monday, June 8, 2009


I found some excellent running company ... my daughter Kathryn.

Yesterday, we headed out for a two-miler in the heat of the day. Kathryn went out too fast, while my body argued about the seven-miler and 18 holes of golf I played the day before. After a mile, she was struggling. She fussed up a storm the last mile, as I slowed to encourage her. It was a tough run.

Back home, I thought she might continue to vent, even clamor about quitting. Instead, after she cooled off she started a chart that said:

My Running.
Summer goal - 50 miles.
Two drawn lines indicated her accomplishment.

Damn, that made me proud.

Last night, she asked if I could wake her at 5:30 for a morning run. "Sure," I said, hoping I'd feined amazement. She said she preferred running "when it's not so hot." That's my girl.

This morning, with our friend Pepper leading the charge, we went for a three-miler. Our pace was very modest, more than 11:00/mile. Yesterday, Kathryn went out too fast.

At 1.3, I could tell she was tiring a little, so I asked if she wanted to turn around. "Yes," she said. Pepper, fresh from a bath and brush yesterday, stayed on pace. Yes, it's true ... Dogs do smile.

So do Dads with their daughters. Kathryn finished a strong 2.6. She charged the last hill, blowing by me at a 7:30/mile pace I knew she wouldn't hold for a quarter mile. Pepper and I took off, catching her. We finished together and stretched.

Saturday night, Dori, the kids and I headed back to Arrington Vineyards. Dori asked her friends Liz, Catherine and their families to join us. While the eight kids ages 11 to 2 played on the hill, the grown-ups laughed, drank good wine and ate great food.

At one point, Dori roamed the grounds with Will. On a hill overlooking a picturesque valley - much like Northern Sonoma - Dori meandered through a maze of picnic tables, chairs and blankets. She came upon an old friend, Betsy the Bartender, one of the ladies who performed several biopsies on Dori.

Betsy told Will he has a great Mom, something he knows but doesn't mind hearing. Betsy said nice words about the rest of our family, getting misty-eyed as she saw the fruits of her labor, a leukemia survivor enjoying a wonderful evening after the biggest scare of her life.

Dori and I really like Scott, Liz's husband. A cancer survivor, Scott enjoyed the night immensely. He kept telling Liz, "This place has to go in the rotation." After the sun set, an incredible full moon rose over the crest of the hill. I've seen some great moonrises over the ocean, but this one was memorable.

Dori later told me that Scott said, "You know why this is awesome, right?"


Dennis Pyritz, RN said...

Open invitation to you and your readers to participate in the Being Cancer Book Club. This month we are discussing “The Last Lecture” by Randy Pausch. “...the lecture he gave ... was about the importance of overcoming obstacles, of enabling the dreams of others, of seizing every moment (because “time is all you have…and you may find one day that you have less than you think”). It was a summation of everything Randy had come to believe. It was about living.”
Monday is Book Club day; Tuesday Guest Blog and Friday Cancer News Roundup.
Also check out Cancer Blog Links containing almost 200 blog links and Cancer Resources with 230 referenced sites, both divided into disease categories.
Please accept this invitation to join our growing cancer blogging community at
Take care, Dennis

Donna Clements said...

I love that Kathryn is starting to run. I was about that age when I started running too! So sweet. It may be a life long "friend" for her.
Jim, you have two beautiful, strong women in your life!!
How proud you must be...