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A novel by Len Joy

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Friday, February 12, 2010

The Sibling Reunion

I’ve just returned from our weeklong Sibling Reunion in Phoenix. We used to just go for three days, but since Suzanne has retired (at least for awhile) we decided to take a week. This is our third annual sib reunion. Before that it was called the Sisters Reunion and I wasn’t invited. They claim that they only did that a few times. Now they not only let the brother join them, but also all the brothers-in-law.

I have three sisters and two of them married guys from Cananadaigua so when we get together there are a lot of when-we-were-kids-growing-up-in-Canandaigua recollections. Al and Suzanne (the non-Canandaiguans) really enjoy those discussions.

Some of my sisters are older than me and some aren’t. Kendra (married to Don Witter) lives in Skaneateles, New York, and is a recently retired elementary school librarian. Don, also recently retired, was an executive with Welch-Allyn (the folks that make all of those medical scopes and other medical-optical devices).  I played golf with Don the day after we arrived. We both shot 78, but it took him 18 holes and I was able to do it only twelve.

Carol (married to Tom Vecchi) lives in Phoenix and has been our host/organizer for the last three years because nobody seems to want to come to Chicago in February. She is the Nursing Case Manager for Phoenix Children’s Hospital. Carol has done a great job of organizing activities and planning meals. She even bought butter and ice cream and other toxic substances, which she normally doesn’t allow in her home. Her husband Tom was my business partner for fifteen years and we still get along great. Right, Tom?

He too is now an avid triathlon enthusiast. We plan to race for the third year in a row at the Lake Havasu Triathlon in late March.

Christine and her husband Al Dunayer live in Bozeman, Montana. Christine (check out her bio and baskets) is a world-famous basketmaker and Al is, among other things, the go-to-guy in Bozeman if you have a problem with your bike. Since I shipped my tri bike to Phoenix so I could have it there for my first two races (in March and May) I had to reassemble it on my own. (I am not famous for my mechanical acumen.) After I did my first ride I noticed that the aerobars seemed to be slightly out of alignment, but fortunately I had Al available to check out my assembly. To summarize in less blunt language than Al used, I was lucky the bike didn’t fall apart during my ride. But he got it all fixed, so I’m voting we let him come back again next year, even though he did whine about my playing a Mary Chapin-Carpenter CD on our day trip to Sedona.

We all had a great time and once Kendra (the official sibling photographer) has a chance to go through the 743 pictures that she took I will replace this two year old photograph of our reunion. I would have passed this off as our official reunion photograph (because we really don't age anymore) except Al isn’t in the picture as he didn’t show up that year.

One of Christine Joy's baskets:


red oisier and dogwood
20" x 28" x 20"


Ania Vesenny said...

This is such a dynamic sibling picture (the first one). The heart basket is absolutely stunning. Why is it even called a basket?

Len said...

My little sister was only 13 months old when that picture was taken. I wonder if my Mom was in the wings waiting to catch her if she tumbled? She does look like she's got a firm grip on that other chair.

Stuart said...

If Suzanne is pretending at retirement when will you be coming down under to the place where they really do triathlons. Its only 13 hours in a plane from LA or San fran.

Len said...

Hey Stuart - Do you think you get me a sponsor? Fosters would be nice.