Saturday, November 17, 2007

The weekend that was (a week later)

Sorry, my posts have been a week late.
Was in Indianapolis last weekend to visit my sister who doing a 2 month elective there. I had some extra days off and way too many frequent-flier miles anyway, so Kristin and I flew down for free.
Indianapolis is a nice city; retains some of the friendly, midwestern feel, though more cultured and vibrant than Rochester.

War Memorial

Stayed at a beautiful downtown hotel. However, as nice as it was, our stay was plagued by some very rude and inconsiderate peri-pubertal (and some post-pubertal) kids, attending what appears to be some church meeting. The Hilton became a huge slumber party, with kids from 10-30 running around the hallways well into the night. They were talking, screaming, laughing everywhere, even right outside our door, slamming doors. Sticking my head out to tell them off only shut them up for a few seconds, for another group would soon come by and do the same thing. Hotel security couldn't keep them quiet too; after a sweep the kids just came right back. And there were hundreds of them spread out on different floors, in different hotels. I'd like to think that a church meeting would promote among other things, kindness. But they were just thoughtlessly inconsiderate, perhaps in a teenage kind of way. We were pissed. I even have a 2-minute recording on my cellphone of the noise they were making late at night, heard from INSIDE my room. Just to show to the hotel manager.

After I went down to speak to the supervisor at 11 pm, I was on the way back up to the 16th floor with yet another bunch of teenyboppers. Don't get me wrong; I think religion and faith are important and powerful tools for life. But when one gets so high on it that he gets inconsiderate, that's never a nice thing to others. One of them kept holding the door open at every floor, telling hordes of people waiting outside melodiously, 'Do you know Jesus loves you?' which sparked an active 60 second exchange, with the door open. While the rest of us waiting for the elevator to go. Eventually, I just said to them sternly, 'Will you please let go of the door???'. The euphoric kids looked at me like I was the devil himself, trying to sabotage their mission. I was like Scrooge, telling kids Santa was dead.

But anyways. Back to Indianapolis. That aside, we had a swell time. We hung out with my sis, and got to do some shopping, visited the War Memorial, the zoo and aquarium. Drove to a large outlet mall about 30 minutes away, where my sister's eyeballs almost left their sockets when she saw the shopping potential of the place. We spent 3 hours there (and that was with my whining about my headache, no doubt in part from the racket the kids made the night before).

Plane, what plane?

There was a nice group of Malaysians there too, most in medicine. So it was a bonus meeting up with others, and knowing that they're doing well in their respective fields. Despite my insistence, they bought us dinner (thanks, guys).

We got back to Rochester Sunday evening, just in time to attend Buddy's fundraiser benefit. This was organized by his classmates and some consultants, one of them kindly donating his tapas restaurant for the event. The turnout was amazing, with everyone showing their support to my friend who's at the start of his uphill journey. But it's clear, he's not going to be alone for the journey.
There were numerous tributes, all wonderful reminders of the character my friend is. I think too that it was therapeutic to others seeing him there as it reminded everyone that Buddy's still the same guy, and that they (in his words) didn't need to use 'kiddy gloves' on him. It was good too that his parents attended; they should be proud of themselves that they raised such a wonderful man.

It was well-attended, by people from various divisions within the department of medicine. Families, friends, colleagues. All there to say we're here to help, and to contribute to his now-expanding expenses.


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