IMR: 2000: June: 08 — Thursday, 10:49 p.m.
Our Apartment, Makiki, Hawai`i

Last night as a sorry bachelor!

I left work at 5 p.m. sharp and zipped home, diving into four straight hours of cleaning. Hauling out bags of trash, gathering widely scattered piles of laundry, picking up Katie's books and toys (which have covered the floor of her room since they left), moving stuff, fixing stuff, and — yes — vacuuming and shampooing the carpet.

Heck, I did stuff that should have been done months ago.

I shut off the power and finally fixed the finicky power outlet in the living room that would cut off power to the entire apartment if you looked at it funny (enjoying a brief adrenaline rush when, as I examined it, it started buzzing and throwing blue sparks). I finally got up the courage to clean all the dead bugs and other unidentified organic matter in the deepest corners of our kitchen drawers and cupboards. I restacked all the boxes in our closet, which I'd otherwise always feared would tumble out and cripple me in my sleep.

And, of course, I have my coordinated bathroom all ready.

Yes... Everything in its place, the nest ready for resettlement by its most cherished tenants.

I know to Jen — living in comparative splendor these last few weeks — this little apartment will seem positively humble. But given how things were just last week, to me it's a sparkling, cozy sixth-floor castle.

It's about 4 a.m. where Jen is right now. She might already be up (or perhaps she hasn't even slept), having spent the night with Katie at a hotel near the Orlando airport to ease the insanity of a 6 a.m. flight. I'm sure she's nervous.

And of course, I'm nervous. Unreasonably so.

CNN isn't helping much, either. The first tropical depression of the year, the anchor chirps, is developing over Texas! (Jen's stopover is in Dallas.) A rare, "G3" level flare of solar radiation is expected to shower Earth tonight — how exciting!

Uck. I'm switching to Seinfeld.

I know god likely scoffs at fairweather fans, but I'm praying for their safe return. Jen, I'm sure, is praying harder for simply a peaceful, tantrum-free trip.

I definitely appreciate the six-hour difference between there and here, though. It's comforting to think that by the time I wake up tomorrow morning, my family will be more than halfway home. And by the time my coworkers file out for lunch, I'll be hugging them close and vowing never to let us be apart this long again.

I did take a break tonight and hooked up with Jon Levy again, grabbing a quick bite at Zippy's. I figured, better spontaneously go out with a friend, 'cause it'll be a while until I get another chance.

Always an experience, hanging out with Jon. He and I both talk loud and fast, stretching our wits and sarcasm skills. Almost as bad, I think Jen would say, as when my brother and I get lost in conversation.

I can't hold a candle to Jon's stories, though. We're from completely different worlds, and frankly, a kid with a military bent and a knack for marine biology (and a black-belted girlfriend) has many more tales to tell than a domesticated geek.

He came up to see the "new apartment" (the last time he visited, we lived two floors up on the opposite end of the building), and I bragged about the newly cleaned and fluffed carpet and the advantages of living on the mauka side. (I resisted the urge to show off the shower curtain.)

We made tentative plans to catch "Gone in Sixty Seconds" someday soon — knowing full well it wasn't going to happen — and he eventually headed home to a long list of chores.

Oh, and the hackers are back.

I thought I'd managed to close all the security holes on our webserver when we were hacked last week, and certainly things were quiet for a while. I'd almost stopped regularly checking.

But, literally as I was heading out the door tonight, I noticed an extra line on our main page. Another juvenile message from somewhere out there. I replaced the page, and headed over the server to pore over the now-verbose logs, finding nothing but my own logins.

When I got back to my desk, I reloaded our site and found another note on another page.

"Jeez, there're in right now," I groaned.

I shut down the site, put in a call to our new NT support vendor, and stomped out the door cursing Microsoft the whole way. It's a mess I'd rather deal with tomorrow morning, my resolve bolstered by having something beautiful and warm to look forward too.

American Airlines Flt. No. 1859, Orlando (MCO) to Dallas/Ft. Worth (DFW), 6:38 a.m. to 8:14 a.m., then Flt. No. 5, Dallas/Ft. Worth to Honolulu (HNL), 9:30 a.m. to 12:13 p.m. — I've just about got it memorized.

If the flight's on time, she might very well be in the air already. So it's off to pray, then to sleep, all the better to see her sooner.

© Ryan Kawailani Ozawa · E-Mail: · Created: 8 June 2000 · Last Modified: 30 June 2000