A Death & A Trip to Long Beach

My Dad died this summer and I haven’t really felt up for much so I thought I’d take a break from my Banff, Canada posts and start here. I’ve been feeling better since my trip to California to visit my Aunt and cousins. In fact, my cousin, her kid, and my Aunt spent time with my Dad in NY about a month before he passed. They felt bad for not going to the funeral but we felt it was better to end on the note of their trip. The wake and funeral were very small. Only 2 other relatives live in NYC except my immediate family.

It all went down kind of fast and that’s all I care about. My Dad slowed down a lot the past 2 years but he was doing good for his age and condition. We were looking into long term care to prepare for when things get more advanced. I’ve been stressing since the beginning of the year for the day I had to give him the talk about needing a wheelchair or walker.

It was $5 Tuesdays at Loew’s, meaning movie day (we’d go every Tuesday if there was stuff we were interested in seeing)! My mom, dad and I went to see Ant Man & the Wasp. In June, Vic and I went to Sao Miguel in the Azores and my Dad perked up before this trip. When we got back he was still pretty good. This particular movie day he seemed a bit off but like an off day that he usually had once in a while. At the end of the movie things turned, so much so an ambulance had to be called. Turns out, he had some major shit going on.

My Dad died within 15 hours of admittance. It turned out he had a lot of necrotic intestines, an abdominal aortic aneurysm which burst but was contained, and his dead intestines ripped and were leaking stool into his body. So basically he was dying. My one regret is going home for 4 hours because in that time he lost consciousness. Before I left, I told him I loved him and was just getting some things from home and I’ll be back. I should have taken a cab back right away. He died while I was in a car headed back to Manhattan. I’ll focus on his fast death which means very little suffering. I’ve known people who were sick for years and suffered. How we didn’t know about the neurotic intestines is baffling because I’ve been told it hurts like hell. But my theory along with my friends in the medical field think his dementia made him not understand his pain or forget about it and he probably hid it too (he’s one of those guys who suck it up).

California was a good trip. It was fun and a much needed break. We didn’t really dwell on my Dad’s death, just hung out with my relatives. My Aunt is very happy he didn’t suffer as am I. I haven’t felt like writing for a while and this trip sparked it gain so I’ll start here and leave the rest of Canada and the Azores posts till later.

We walked into a few stores and art galleries in Laguna Beach and walked along the beach. It was a quiet day with great weather. The sun gets really hot but the wind feels nice. I just realized we didn’t take many pics in Laguna.

I almost forgot, they took us to lunch in Santa Ana. My cousin was looking up authentic places to eat. This lunch place was very authentic. My cousin is funny, he said, “I’m gonna take you to the ghetto for authentic Mexican.” Of course, Vic and I were drooling with those words because those are the neighborhoods with the best food. That’s how we like to travel. As long as the neighborhood is “safe enough” to us, we’ll go and get some authentic grub. But if you aren’t comfy doing that stuff, don’t do it. Always travel in a way that makes you feel safe, we felt fine but because we felt fine doesn’t mean you will feel fine so go with what you know and travel safe. We drove there, ate and left.

We ate at Tapatia.

Pollo Adobo was very very yummy.



31 thoughts on “A Death & A Trip to Long Beach

  1. So sorry to hear of the news of your Dad… I experienced the same loss of my Dad earlier in 2018. Thanks for sharing how a trip has helped you come to terms with some of the grief. My Dad was taken ill in 2017 while I was on a second visit to New Orleans, and I took quite some time before I eventually returned to New Orleans in October 2018, and that felt like quite a cathartic trip for me personally. My thoughts are with you and your family.

    1. I’m sorry for your loss. That had to be tough that it he got sick on your trip. This had to be a tough holiday season for you and your family as well. I’m sorry. My thoughts are with you and your family. We went to see King Kong on Broadway the Friday of Christmas to lighten the mood. Think I’ll make that a thing every year. Take Care.

  2. I’m sorry to hear of the loss of your father. A quick departure can be traumatic for the family, but I’m sure it is easier for the individual. I’m glad that your family is a comfort to you. Take care.

    1. Thank You.

      It was for the best. I was freaking out about how to get him to use a walker because he was slowing down a lot, a lot. He was very stubborn. It does make me happy he passed on his own terms. Never used cane just like he wanted. My grandpa was bedridden for years after a stroke so I remind myself that this is better.

      Trying to get back into my WP routine.

      1. Feels good to be back. I really couldn’t write about anything for a while. Gave myself till the end of the year to mope and told myself to get back a routine in the New Year.

        I kind of take after my Dad so in some ways I feel like he’s not gone. One main difference is he rarely cursed and I can have quite the potty mouth.

      2. Ha, ha! A potty mouth is a wonderful release for passionate people. That’s my stance. we aren’t uncouth – just passionate.

  3. I was in New Orleans and the best food I found was in a mini market attached to a gas station….I really wasn’t there for the food…but that’s a whole other story

  4. As far as my health not much has changed…but I do try to carry on with life in spite of it all…i was sorry to hear about your dad but I thought to write about something with some more spirit to it and something you of all people would enjoy especially I love doing that kind of stuff too

    1. Hope you feel better too. Like your fighting spirit 🙂

      Your New Orleans story made me think of either Savannah or Charleston. We ate at a supermarket attacked to a gas station. We really liked the fried chicken!

      My Dad was old enough to be my grandpa so I remind myself he had a long life. He really did go on his terms. He was slowing down a lot and I was wondering if he needed a cane or walker. He would have given me hell if that time ever came and I had to speak with him about it. We had a great last day. It was really fun.

      Take Care, Sheldon!

    1. Thank You. It was nice getting to know my cousins. They are in their 50s-60s since my dad had kids late in life. I always knew he was old enough to be my grandpa but I didn’t “get” it until I was chatting with a friend. We were talking about everyone who served in the military. My Dad and relatives of that generation served in WWII and Korea and his uncles were Vietnam, that’s when it really sunk in. The holidays were weird but ok. I really miss his old NY stories, I really liked them.

  5. There’s never an easy way to say good bye to the ones we love. It’s a blessing when family is there with hands to hold, lifting all up through the darkest times. Be kind to yourself. Please accept my condolences on the occasion of your father’s passing.

  6. My sister almost died of a necrotic burst bowel. She thought she had the flu so I’m not sure it’s anything an onlooker can guess about. She was younger (55) and survived.

    I’m very sorry about your dad and glad that you have family around.

    1. Thank You. The doctors were baffled how much was necrotic. They said it should have hurt a lot. I’m wondering if the dementia made him not notice it or forget he was in pain. Glad your sister is ok .

  7. I am so sorry to read about your dad’s passing, but so glad you were able to spend his last day with him. And I appreciate your sharing from your tender heart here.
    Many blessings in ALL ways.

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