Al's Journey

Al's Journey
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WEEK 697
Week Ending Saturday 20th of September 2014

Day 4880 of My Journey
Weight Watchers Goal
(the top of my normal weight range)
200.0 pounds

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Week 697 Update

Weigh-In Date: 09/20/2014
Weight: 216.2
Body Mass Index:27.0
Average Weight for week: 217.43
Miles Walked for week: 10.00
Aerobic Points* for week: 17.18
Exercise Calories Burned for week: 1,233
Miles Walked in 2014: 233.31
Pounds +/- for this week: -1.2
Pounds lost total: 26.8
Pounds From WW Goal (Normal Range<200 lbs)16.2
Pounds From My Personal Goal (185±2lbs.)31.2

Week's Data
   Weight217.4 217.0 219.0 217.2 217.0 216.4 219.2
   Miles1.00 1.00 0.00 2.00 2.00 2.00 2.00
   Time18:49 19:01 00:00 36:13 37:27 35:13 35:22
 Aero. Pts*1.2 1.17 0 3.65 3.44 3.86 3.86
Cal. Burned120 128 0 237 238 247 263
   +Elev53 84 0 100 100 150 200

My Girl 1974

At home, I stepped up on the scale at 3:51 a.m. and it said, "216.2 pounds!"

Forty years ago my world changed forever.

On Sunday September 15, 1974, it was nice day, and I had the 12-16 watch, on the quarterdeck. (I would have the mid-watch later that night, but I wasn't worrying about that right then.) The sun was out, and the temperature was pushing 76° and I was in my dress whites. I had a .45 in a holster, waiting for 16:00 to roll around so I could get off watch and relax.

The Officer of the deck and I were shooting the breeze, when all at once a group of girls suddenly headed for the gangway. This was very much out of the ordinary and quite welcome. When they got to the quarterdeck they asked for one of the sailors to meet them, and as it turned out they were Mormons and there were some Mormon sailors onboard who had invited them there to have a little tour of the ship.

When the sailor arrived I was tasked by the OOD to escort them up to the bridge and let them in for a look around. I opened the hatch for them on the port side of the ship, and stood and watched them from the weather deck as they looked around. I can still remember how this one girl, who had deep dark brown eyes, and dimples that wouldn't quit, and many other things which struck my fancy in a major way, stood there on the starboard side of the bridge, and was looking up at the gauges and out the window, which was facing the Fremont Bridge at the time.

Bob, one of the Mormon guys, was an Electronics Technician too, so we worked together. I didn't catch the girl's name but I let him know she had really knocked me off my feet. He told me that on Wednesday night they were having a volleyball game at the LDS church and that girl would be there. Yep, I took the bait, and with relish. Big Smile

Now, I know what Bob's idea was; he was hoping that I would be converted to his religion, and the whole social thing was sort of a hook to do that. But I had made it clear I was very, very interested in that one girl I saw on the ship.

So, Wednesday the 18th, I hopped in Bob's car, and he drove me over to pick up Dotti for the volleyball game, so I could officially meet her. She didn't know me yet and put her friend Rene in the back seat with me, and Dotti sat up front with Bob, until she could check me out a bit. She turned around the entire time we were in the car, and talked with me, and that broke the ice really well. And after I finally got to meet this young lady who had so caught my eye, I was even more impressed!
A little aside, Rene sprained her ankle really badly one day a few weeks later, and I picked her up and carried her from the apartments over to the E.R. at a hospital right next door. It was around 800 to 1,000 feet. I didn't get to play Sir Galahad too often, but I got her to the doctor okay. Dotti was walking beside us all the way, keeping Rene's spirits up.
Her name was Dorothy, and didn't care for the name Dotty, Dotti, nor Dottie. She was Dorothy for the time being.

The game took place at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, at 2218 NE 106th Ave. As is common for that church, they had a gym build onto the side of the church, where they could keep their young people well entertained with good healthy, clean fun.

Once we got started, I found that Dotti played volleyball, just as she does with so many things in life, with gusto! And we had fun.

Then they had a film where they were presenting some church related material and, since this was my first exposure to the LDS church, I asked Dotti a lot of questions about it as it was going on. (Bob kept leaning over trying to shush us, because he was afraid I wasn't getting the full treatment, and that we were talking about other things, but his worries were ill-founded. I hadn't mentioned my background yet to Dotti, in church schools and the fact that I had been a theology major for a time in college. But I always like to learn about what people believe.)

At the end of the evening she asked if I was interested in joining the group for an ice skating party on Friday evening. I told her I was very much interested, however I had to get my mom's car back to her on Friday, because the ship was pulling out and heading for San Diego for an exercise, on Saturday. I was driving the car down and flying back on Friday, from the Medford airport to Portland. I was not sure if I would be back in time, but I was sure I would try my best to make it.

When I talked with Mom, I told her I had a "hot date" and I wanted to get back for it. She was very understanding. Big Smile

Well, Friday, September 20th, forty years ago today, Bob picked me up at the airport when my plane landed and drove me over to his apartment where I could change my clothes. I put on a nice pair of blue pants and had these silly white shoes and belt, and when we stopped by to pick up Dotti, she and her roommate Linda laughed and told me to go back and change into blue jeans, I didn't have to impress her. So, I changed before we went skating at the Silver Skate Ice Rink, at 1201 N.E. 102nd Avenue.

I was very glad that I did make it for the party, and what a treat it turned out to be! I went from fondness, to head over heals in love that night. A few months before I swore I would never get married again, but all that went away that night.

I don't remember what it was, but there was something that was forgotten at Dotti's apartment, which was pretty close by, and since we didn't have a car we jogged over to pick it up. This was a big deal to me. I had never dated (and certainly hadn't married) anyone who was into sports. She and I ran the half mile, got whatever it was, and then ran back, and then we set about getting our ice skates.

Little did I know at the time that Dotti had lived in Vermont and was an excellent skater! I grew up in Southern California, where I had ice in my water or tea, but never on the ground. Dotti was all over the ice. She was a pro, and I was happy to be able to skate around the rail without falling down. She did figure eights and other tricks and I was amazed.

Later, she pulled me out into the middle of the rink, and suddenly, I was out of my comfort zone! But Dotti held my hand, and pulled me along gently, and I didn't fall!

Then we moved to the railing, and we spent some serious time just standing and talking, discussing our personal view of life and so many things. And did we ever "click"!

That evening, after the skating, the girls had volunteered to help the guys clean up their apartment, because our ship was going to be heading out to sea the next morning.

As it turned out, I had my guitar with me, and so I played a number of songs, and some of the girls were sitting on the floor listening, instead of cleaning the apartment. Dotti's twin sister asked me to play the song Operator several times. But Dotti, was hard at work in the kitchen washing dishes and cleaning up. She didn't quit until the job was done. Once again that evening she really impressed me. I had learned a lot from my first marriage about what is important in life and what is not. Dotti was only 17, but she was wise beyond her years, caring and special beyond anything I could describe.

And she didn't ignore my playing entirely. She kept sticking her head around the corner and smiling at me. I never missed one of those looks either. I was hopelessly lost in love already. Forty years ago today.

One thing about the Navy, you never know for sure what is going to be going on, and we had several twists and turns coming up. I will continue my saga of our 40th anniversary of our meeting and falling in love, next week.

The picture at the top of the page is the earliest photo I have of Dotti after I met her. We are complete opposites in personality. If you look extrovert up in the dictionary, there her picture should be. Mine would be right by introvert. She was, is and always will be fun! The unexpected is expected. I need her bubbling, beautiful personality in my life so desperately I can't conceive of things being any other way.

And that is with short hair. I love long hair, but Dotti had just broken up with her old boyfriend and hacked off her hair just before she met me. This is what she looked like before, and if she looked like that when I met her I think I might have simply melted into a puddle on the floor, and been totally tongue-tied. What a knockout!

There is another anniversary today that I have to mention: Dotti's Weight Loss Zone is 16 years old today. Put 16 candles on the cake, and get ready for the coming out party. Sweet 16 today!

I was just telling Dotti this morning that the percentage of our marriage that DWLZ had been around is approaching the halfway point. (In 6.28 years it will be half of our marriage, and in 8.0 years it will be half of the time we have been in love.)

We have a big deal coming up, for the two of us. We have the 40th anniversary of our first date alone together, on September 28. We climbed to the top of Multnomah Falls on that day, and we are going to do it again on the same day if we can. This has gotten both of us up and exercising again, thank goodness. I told her I was not going to go on the hike with her, if she was not exercising first, and I needed to be exercising as well. In fact at 63, and with my family history of heart issues, I need it even more than she does.

Dotti has always had a strong heart. When she lost her weight in '98, she got up on both the treadmill and the elliptical trainer and pushed way harder than anyone that overweight should have pushed it. She scared me in fact, watching her. But she did it and she is doing it again, but she is much lighter today than she was then!

We had a hiatus if you will, from our efforts to get back to goal. I was dropping like a rock and hit the 209 area and Dotti was stalled out around 201. I had waited to let her get well ahead of me before I started, because I did not want to catch her and pass her up. But when she stalled out, I was in a quandary. What should I do?

Well, I just quit for a time, and guess what happened? I gained weight; what a surprise. Frown I worked my way all the way back to where I was in May! Yuk!

Today I weighed 216.2, which is where I was 2 weeks ago. I am pushing my exercise back up towards where I was, and I am aiming at getting ready for that upcoming hike. I walked 2 miles yesterday, and the hike to the top of the falls and back again is 2.4 miles. I am taking a rest day today and then tomorrow I am aiming for returning to my standard 3.0 miles. Yesterday I went up 200 feet, and I need to get that number higher, because it is an elevation change of over 700 feet on the hike. There is only so much I can do in 8 days, but I hope to be getting closer to the actual hike numbers this upcoming week.

And Dotti has been doing awesome the last few days. Today she went 3.5 miles and burned well over 400 calories in 45 minutes. She is going to be ready for the hike!

Today I am back to Journaling what I eat. That in combination with my exercise, I will be all set to start dropping again. Dotti is on track and journaling and she is back to exercising again and she is going to be dropping again too. I think this 40th anniversary is doing a very good thing in motivating us to return to the correct path. It was a wonderful date the first time, and it led to a life together that I wouldn't trade for anything, other than maybe a chance to live it all over again with Dotti! Big Smile

I spent the week struggling with trying to get our online newsletter coding done. I have run into several hurdles. I could slap something together, easy enough but I want something that will be good for the long haul and so I am visiting and then revisiting the basic design. I want to do it right the first time, and I don't want to have to do it over. Also, I want something in place where creating new Dotti's Newsletter issues will be straight forward and simple. Better to do some hard work now, and then let the computer do the work later on. Big Smile

There always seems like there is more that needs doing, but the time is limited, and while people tell me I am not old, I am not moving like I used to, getting things done. But I keep hacking away and that is all I can do. And another week of struggling along has come to an end. Time to start the next one. Wish me luck!

One final picture. This on the trip down to introduce Dotti to Mom and it was on this trip that Dotti said, "Yes" to my proposal. Yes!!!!

13 years, 132 days on my journey; a lifetime to follow.

6′ 3″ / 243.0 / 216.2 / 185.0±2.5 /BMI: 27.0 /WK- 697

Maximum weight: 243       Target Weight Range: 185.0±2.5 pounds

*Aerobic Points shown here are calculated from the walking data directly. They do not include additional points earned through hiking at higher intensity for extended periods of time or other forms of exercise (which may or may not be noted in other tables or my updates text for this week) . My goal is to earn 30 Aerobic Points per week, for cardio-vascular health.

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