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Thread: What was your most enjoyable day of 2001?

  1. #1

    What was your most enjoyable day of 2001?

    Note: This thread was originally posted by me in another forum in January, 2002.

    With 2001 well behind us, I am just curious to know what the most happy or enjoyable day of the year was for all of you. I am sure there is one date that stands out on a personal basis. Please share with me the date, and the events that made that day so memorable.

    For me, the nicest day has got to be January 13, 2001, a Saturday. Looking back, its is difficult to believe it is just a year and a half-ago with all that has happened worldwide and even more so on a personal front.

    I like to reflect back on the previous year and think about all the changes that have taken place in my life over the course of that year as well as events that have taken place in the world. To me, no January seems so distant at the end of the year than January of 2001. Looking back, I can recall no month so further in the past, and a peace-of-mind from that era now so elusive.

    On the surface, it would seem like a just typical day in the life of a relatively new father taking his kids out for some fun. On that day, I decided to take my two kids, Shaun, then aged 3, and Bethany, aged 11 months, to a nearby Metropark for some cross-country sledding.(Pushing them down a trail in a sled). I usually take them somewhere when my wife, who stays at home with the kids, needs a little break from them. I love taking them places.

    We arrived at the park around 1:00 P.M., which was empty of almost all activity - a far cry from the chaos of my previous visits last summer. The park is heavily forested, being some of the last remnants of the Great Black Swamp. It was a typical mid-January day: Cloudy and overcast, temperature about 33 F with almost no wind. There was about six inches of snow on the ground, leftover from the near- record snowfall from the month previous. You couldn't pick a better day to just go walking in the woods. To me, nothing is more perfect than an overcast day in the winter with the temperature hovering around freezing with plenty of snow on the ground for insulation and little or no wind. Contrast this with a typical snowless sunny day in winter, and chances are it will be windy and colder. To me, winter snow brings "warmth". If its winter, it might as well be snowy.

    Anyway, all I did that day was take Shaun and Bethany down one of the trails through the forest. I just trudged down the footpath, easily traversable after weeks of being trampled on by hikers and skiers, yet with enough snow for a sled to move with relative facility. The kids enjoyed being pushed along in the snow. Shaun had been in sleds before, but for Bethany, this was a totally new experience. There was absolutely nobody else around and amongst the endless landscape of bare trees, it was so eerily quiet. The only thing audible other than an sporadic squirrel or bird, was the distant hum of traffic on the main highway on the north edge of the park. Occasionally the soothing drone would be broken up by reports from a distant hunter's shotgun, or far off siren's song of a freight train.

    I pushed the sled with them in it all the way to one of those old wooden WPA gazebos that was built in the 1930s. Shaun kept saying "I like this place" and we just hung around inside there for a while. Bethany just made a few unintelligible sounds that you expect from a 11 month old (I'm sure she knew what she was saying). Since she wasn't walking yet, I had to hold her, but Shaun was able to walk around and marvel at all the newfound uniqueness around him. Nearby was a stone bridge, also built during the Great Depression. The kids didn't complain about the cold, or anything else, the whole time we were there.

    We stayed there about twenty minutes or so, then headed back to the visitors center to warm up a little. Inside it was one of those Windows on Wildlife where you could view all the birds and animals through a large picture window with sounds piped in from the outside. It was nice and warm and toasty inside.

    I propped Bethany up on the ledge in front of the large glass and she kept alternately smiling at me and then looking out the window. At eleven months, she certainly hadn't seen anything like this before. (Heck, she didn't even know what a squirrel was). Shaun occupied himself by running up and down a long row of shelves that were used for seating. You can't buy that kind of enjoyment at places like Toys R Us.

    We were there about a forty-five minutes so and I wanted to take Shaun to see some trains so we left. In retrospect I wish we had stayed there longer. There would always be plenty of time to see trains, but the kind of things we did today, as I would soon find out, occur only once in a lifetime. At the time, I remember thinking that since it was only mid-January, there would be plenty of opportunities to come back and do this again. But the truth was, I never did. By the end of the month, all the snow had pretty much melted and I never got the chance to get back out there because they heavy snows never returned. Oh, I did go back to that park with them later on that year in the summer, and we even went to the Nature Center. But it just wasn't the same. There were just too many people...and mosquitoes.

    That quiet January day remains the most memorable day of 2001 because it symbolizes a much happier time for me. On the surface, nothing really exciting happened on that day, didn't win a million dollars or anything like that. It was just a typical fun winter day with the kids, the way life should be. Yet, I think it was a picture-postcard day for what early childhood should be like for every boy and girl. I can't help but feel sad for all the little ones that were not outside on such a blessedly beautiful day such as January 13, 2001.

    It wouldn't be too much later that year that I would get severely depressed. By April, my beloved grandfather had died, and after a disastrous vacation in June, followed by severe anxiety at work, I had spiraled into a deep depression. The relative happiness of the past 14 or 15 years seems to have come to a grinding halt, and I seem to be at my lowest level of happiness since I was 21. It would get even worse in 2002: My father, ailing for years, had died by April, barely a year after his father - my grandfather had passed.

    Yet, in some ways, the saddest thing of all is that my daughter will never be 11 months old again. We could go back again this winter, and I'm sure we would have a good time, but it just won't be the same. I doubt she will even remember me taking her there on that warm winter day, so long ago. More than anything, I wish she would remember, but babies aren't meant to remember things like that, or if so, only a few fleeting recollections that cannot be assigned to a specific place or time.

    So if you have kids that are my age, please do what I do and take them places - free places like parks, playgrounds and train watching sites every opportunity you can. Please keep them out of the malls and away from the TV. If you do, you will be happier for it and they will too. Those first five years are so impressionable and once they are gone, they will never, ever come back.

    I will take my kids to the park like this any opportunity I have. They might not remember any specific event years from now, but if they can remember the spirit of those days with nary a care in the world then I have accomplished one of my responsibilities as a father. Heck, I wish I could remember everything I did from age 1 to 3. I would gladly trade all my dogcrap memories from age 19 to 21 for it, believe me.

    Never before have I felt so disconnected from such a recent part of my past. It seems like some huge chasm has opened up, forever separating me from those less worrisome times of not so long ago, yet for me, another dimension of time.

    What is your most memorable experience of the last year? Be as brief or as lenghty as you want. I will read all responses.[
    Last edited by Super Amputee Cat; 13 Aug 2002 at 4:28 PM.

  2. #2
    Cyburbian Floridays's avatar
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    I can't recall the exact day, but it was during the last week in September. Each year, my family rents a condo on the beach in Destin, FL. Last year was really special because it was the first time that my niece (1.5 years old at the time) had ever been to the beach. She referred to the ocean as the "pool" (she swims in my parents' pool) We had a blast! It made me feel like a kid again.
    It seems that most of my recent beach trips have involved a lounge chair, boom box, several good beach books, and margaritas (hopefully served by a cabana boy named Juan). Very lazy.
    I had totally forgotten the JOY in building sandcastles, feeding the seagulls, and collecting seashells. Everything was a new experience for my toddler niece, and since she and I are best buddies and do everything together, it seemed like a new experience to me too!
    The best was walking on the beach holding hands, or taking her swimming and watching her get so excited as she pointed at the fish that she saw in the water. We sat on the patio and blew soap bubbles and "talked" as we watched the sun set.
    I could go on and on...I guess it would have to be the BEST WEEK I can remember. My niece lives far away from me so I'm always looking forward to the next chance that we have to get together and act silly!

  3. #3
    Cyburbian Jeff's avatar
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    September 10th. Because the rest of the year just sucked, and all that came before just doesn't seem to matter much. All in all, I have to say it was a horrible year.

  4. #4
    Cyburbian Jen's avatar
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    golden days

    I like your post, SuperAmpCat and jan 2001 is ages ago! I too find that the best parts of life are made up of moments. My best moments are with family and when in the outdoors.

    It was last summer, June, when I decided to take my young daughters for a float in the kayak. It was a gusty day on our lake, but sunny. After about an hour I had paddled/was blown to the opposite far end of the shore and the winds had picked up considerably. The boats were also churning up wakes, so that we were getting 1-2 foot rollers on shore! I am a beginner paddler with kids on board I needed to get home!

    So swallowing my panic I mentally charted a course that would keep me in the wind shadow of the island but would put me in the middle of the 40ft deep lake. We all had PFD's on, I took a swig of gatorade and started paddling. I made the island, then took a tack towards shore and in the distance, our beach. It was while in that "final crossing" that I again felt afraid, especially after that stupid MF'ing ski boat driver powered by while on plane and within 50 ft of us! The girls woohooed the bumpy ride and waves crashing on deck. I kept paddling, soon we passed the final point,entered our bay and gloriously riding a roller, beached the kayak at home!

    Whew I was spent and jellied armed, but for hours I was feeling a glow from my "girl adventure". I 'll never forget that day, I don't neccessarily want to repeat it but I'll never forget it.

  5. #5
    Cyburbian nerudite's avatar
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    My best day of 2001 was September 21, which was the day I flew up to Edmonton to meet my boyfriend for the first time. We had been chatting/e-mailing off and on for about five years at the time as "just friends", but were always interested in each other. It was one of those eyes meet across a crowded airport type of moments that I will never forget.

    September 21 was closely followed by November 26 (the day I was offered employment in Canada/quit my hellish job in Washington), and December 15 (the night I made it through customs with the uhaul and was north of the border). It was a rough year on many levels, but luckily the end of it was chock full of personal highlights, despite the tragedy going on in the world.

  6. #6
    Cyburbian Planderella's avatar
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    My most memorable day of 2001 was my last day of employment at the New Orleans City Planning Commission. I walked through the horrid halls of City Hall for the last time as an indentured servant with a shit eating grin on my face, then spent the night out with my now former co-workers boozing and having a great time.
    "A witty woman is a treasure, a witty beauty is a power!"

  7. #7
    maudit anglais
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    2 days:

    June 18th - started my new job

    October 7th - proposed to my girlfriend, now fiancee, soon to be wife.

  8. #8
    Thursday 5th July, the night of my graduation ball, where I wore a really fantastic dress (sorry, no photos) and found out that a friend of mine is not only fantastically fit (again, no photos), he's also a sweety and a gentleman in disguise. I've not been allowed to call him 'beefcake' since. Partied until 9am.
    Glorious Technicolor, Breath-Taking CinemaScope and Stereophonic Sound!

  9. #9
    Cyburbian
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    March 14, 2001. Birth of my twin boys Will and Finn.

  10. #10
    Cyburbian boiker's avatar
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    2001

    It was getting my new job with the city of peoria...June 25, 2001. now i have my issues....
    Dude, I'm cheesing so hard right now.

  11. #11
    Cyburbian El Feo's avatar
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    Originally posted by gkmo62u
    March 14, 2001. Birth of my twin boys Will and Finn.
    [hijack]

    Get back to work George! Hi to you and the fam.

    Eric & Kristin

    [/hijack]
    Last edited by El Feo; 14 Aug 2002 at 10:21 AM.
    "The fanatical Muslims despise America because it's all lapdancing and gay porn; the secular Europeans despise America because it's all born-again Christians hung up on abortion; the anti-Semites despise America because it's controlled by Jews. Too Jewish, too Christian, too Godless, America is also too isolationist, except when it's too imperialist." -- Mark Steyn

  12. #12
    Forums Administrator & Gallery Moderator NHPlanner's avatar
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    March 20, 2001 - proposed to my then fiancee, now my wonderful wife.
    "Growth is inevitable and desirable, but destruction of community character is not. The question is not whether your part of the world is going to change. The question is how." -- Edward T. McMahon, The Conservation Fund

  13. #13
    Cyburbian boiker's avatar
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    oh ya :)

    i completely forgot it was last year! Nov. 24, 2001 I got married.

    I guess with all the resent happenings in my life, It's hard to remember the great days of the last year.
    Dude, I'm cheesing so hard right now.

  14. #14
    Cyburbian El Feo's avatar
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    Re: oh ya :)

    Originally posted by boiker
    i completely forgot it was last year! Nov. 24, 2001 I got married.

    I guess with all the resent happenings in my life, It's hard to remember the great days of the last year.
    Boik, we won't tell the missus.
    "The fanatical Muslims despise America because it's all lapdancing and gay porn; the secular Europeans despise America because it's all born-again Christians hung up on abortion; the anti-Semites despise America because it's controlled by Jews. Too Jewish, too Christian, too Godless, America is also too isolationist, except when it's too imperialist." -- Mark Steyn

  15. #15
    Member
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    August 16th...the birth of my daughter. She was born at home around 2:00pm. The girl had been facing the wrong way for three days, causing my wife some excruciating positional back labor. We were about ready to transport to the hospital (Aaaargh!). That morning, around 11am, we got the kid to flip around the right way, and pushing labor started immediately. The midwives almost missed it, but a friend of ours, serving as doula, was on hand to guide us until they arrived.

    Our plan had been to keep the child at home with us, and to keep her isolated from visitors for the first month in order to minimize risk of exposure to disease (one of many reasons for dodging the hospital...), but our families started freaking out and we decided to let them come over that weekend...

    September 13. Buried my "step"grandfather who had died the evening of September 10th. Had a good heart to heart with my stepmom while helping her and her sisters get his affairs in order. I learned a lot about family members who I barely knew before. Had a lot of time for quiet thinking...far away from home, the office, and the news reports that I had been purposefully ignoring since the 11th. Best of all, the food was good and there was plenty of it...

  16. #16
          Downtown's avatar
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    It was actually a really good year, overall. I would have to say that one of the top 10 was dec 22. My brother had moved to LA from Upstate NY in Jan 01, and hadn't been home since. So he came home, and my entire family was all together for the first time since the previous christmas - parents, sister and brother. we decorated the tree, opened gifts, ate a ton of food. it was just so great having everyone all together, especially since soon my siblings are also going to have to start splitting up their holidays with their significant others.

    Number Two: the day they delivered our family room furniture. our first real *new* furniture, not secondhand, not used and it was replacing the nastiest, most disgusting couch and armchair that had been dragged through god knows how much college housing. it just felt so good to have a family room that I actually wanted to spend time in.

  17. #17
    Cyburbian Habanero's avatar
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    2001

    2001 was amazing for me.. I graduated, moved, and met an amazing man.. who then got me realize my own potential and we just moved to Arizona together for a new and better job..

    2001 was an amazing year!!
    When Jesus said "love your enemies", he probably didn't mean kill them.

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