Day 17 - Casey's Birthday

Trip Start May 18, 2008
Trip End Jul 17, 2008

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Where I stayed
Bennett's Plano Home

Flag of United States  , Texas
Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Day 17

Casey's birthday! I scheduled the trip to Dallas so that I could be here on his birthday and also be with him right before he goes to the FNCC for another conference.

Today, plans were for the family (including me) to get lunch with Casey. We went to a pizza place around the corner. Casey, coming from work, shows up a tad late with a wrecking crew at his back, otherwise known as friends from the office. It was quite funny watching the reaction of his parents who weren't expecting an entourage.

I finally made it to the DMA. I drove into downtown and it's true. Dallas is a big town. And the DMA was big as well. I got a chance to roam around for a couple of hours to see the paintings, sculptures, multimaterial artwork. The Japan collection was pretty impressive with ivory figurine work and metal sculture scenery with detail I've never seen before. Jeff, Casey's dad, warned me about the traffic during rush hour and it was no exaggeration. It was a struggle to get back home. And when I got home, I had an exciting experience waiting for me. I helped dad replace the reverse osmosis water filter system in their kitchen. At one point, flooding was imminent and we worked together to control the situation and completed our task. Casey came home from work.

Casey has a lot in his life coming up. He's planning on going to the FNCC this weekend for the Young Men's Division Conference. But the bigger news is that his application for the SGI-USA internship was accepted and in early July he'll be shipping himself off to FNCC for a full year. Of course, he has to give up his mad paying job and leave friends and family behind for the opportunity but he's pretty excited about getting the type of training he says you can't get anywhere else. So, clearly, there's a lot to celebrate.

Despite that plans fell through to go to a friend's graduation and meet up with a friend in Fort Worth. Plan B? Let's chant together so a great idea comes to mind, we did with dad. Right after that I present the shirt I got for our project group to Casey as a birthday gift, along with some DVDs I burned for him. Then Casey goes through his phone and gets some people to come out to Fox and Hound, a sports bar. Casey had an itch to play some pool. A bunch of SGI member friends came out to say happy birthday to a good friend, including Eddie Mowrer and Mikey Price, another friend that I met at FNCC. Friends, pool, beer and monster shots. Cannot complain!

The last few nights (after the festivities) I've been able to appreciate a lot as Casey and I have had time to wind down and share some great dialogue on life and our practice. It's interesting being the same age and viewing the world from where we are in our lives, we can talk about a lot of the same struggles but also how we go about in tackling them, that's the important part. That's the true value in having friends that you always feel side by side with. Happy birthday, brother.

Miles driven today: 36.8mi

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