Author: Judd, Brooks

Ten Items or Less

Todayís column is dedicated to the memory or my sister-in-law of 40 years, Mary Katherine Gulley Pacheco, who after a 5 month long battle passed away December 15 from complications of pancreatitis. Mary was an older sister to Sheila and Billy, my sister-in-law for 40 years, aunt to my two daughters, wife to Celso Pacheco, step mother and grand mother to his seven children, Great Aunt to my three grandsons, and a best friends to those that were fortunate enough to know her.

There is a now a void that has sucked much of the joy and life out of those that knew and loved her. Mary, may God bless you and keep you by his side. You will be missed more than you will ever know.

1. Oh, those laminectomy blues: (Part 11 from December)
Surgery lasted from7:00 A.M. to 9: 00 A.M. About 10:00 A.M.I slowly regained my senses and amazed that I was feeling no pain. I asked one of the nurses to get Sheila for me. When Sheila walked into the recovery room I cheerfully told her to get the car because we were going home. Sheila gave me the ďNow, Brooks donít start overdoing itĒ look, and told me to wait a couple of hours before barreling out the door.

Within an hour I began feeling the faint traces of pain in my back with and uncomfortable feeling of nausea. About ten minutes later reality smacked me in the face and I realized that the tiny trace of pain was developing into an avalanche of serious pain. Apparently the massive doses of pain numbing medication they shot into my lower back during the surgery were wearing off (at mind numbing speed) and I realized that I would definitely not be going home today. In fact I had serious doubts how I was going to make it through the night. I was hurting.

Morphine and anti-nausea medication was placed into my IV. Iíve heard various stories about morphine, many claiming how wonderful it makes one feel etc. I didnít have that luxury. The morphine basically knocked me out for about a half an hour. When I woke up the pain was just as intense and I would receive another dose of Morphine. This went on through out the evening into the morning hours.

Dr. Helbig came in to check up on me. I told him I was in no hurry go get home, even though I had boasted just an hour earlier that is exactly what I wanted to do. Dr. Helbig smiled, patted my leg and said that many patients might stay up to three days after the surgery. He went on to say that he had taken two pretty good sized pieces of lamina out of both sides of my spinal column and that severe pain was definitely going to be part of the recovery process.

Long story short I spent a terrible night at the hospital but was able to check out at noon the next day, got home and in three weeks I was back walking my 4-6 miles a day . After ten months of inactivity it is great to be able to be out pounding the pavement again.

2. My sister, Maria Nadauld, booking czar for Third Tyme Out, Special Consensus, and others, brought Special Consensus to Modesto last week to the cozy confines of a local eatery, the Barkiní Dog. Special Consensus, a well known and excellent band, was on the California portion of their tour. For some slight quirk in scheduling a free day had appeared on their calendar. Maria was assigned the task to locate and book a venue (somewhere in the Valley) for the band to showcase their excellent bluegrass skills. The kicker here was that it would be a free concert.

Maria had heard about the Barking Dog, a bluegrass friendly restaurant that features our own Red Dog Ash once a month or so (Winners of last years Emerging Artists program at Plymouth). Maria went to work set up the gig and as fate would have it Red Dog Ash was asked to open for Special Consensus.
Maria had invited many of our cousins and friends to attend and it was like a family reunion. It was a great show. Red Dog Ash features Gary Vessel on mandolin, Eli Arrigotti on bass, Dixon Smith on Banjo and on fiery guitar, Turlockís own, the lizard booted, professor of Philosophy, the West Virginian Mr. Jason Winfree. The band writes ALL of their own material, their vocals are hot and they set the place on fire with their picking and singing. The boys looked sharp decked out in their suits, ties, and hats. Iím sure youíll be seeing them at Grass Valley very soon.

Special Consensus, a group co-founded by David Cahill 35 years ago, has played to enthusiastic audiences all over the world. They played two dynamic sets at the Barkiní Dog. They even did an extended Irish tune that had the folks clapping their hands and dancing various forms of Irish Jigs in the aisle. Bluegrass fans and band members ended the evening smiling and chatting together. Good job Maria.

3. An era comes to an end: Rick Cornish is going to retire from the CBA Board. All I can say is what hasnít Rick done for the CBA? We were all lucky and fortunate to have Rick on the board doing what Rick does best, getting things done!

Until March, read a book, hug a child, pet a dog, stroke a cat, and for goodness sake take a second or two and reflect how those close to you are special.
Posted:  2/3/2012

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