May 14, 2000

Spike, looking for his car keys>>>
It was all too much. I was on so much allergy medicine, and we were both so tired from our jobs that the last time we were together we slept most of the time. Cathy wasn't interested in most of the things I loved to talk and debate about and some of which would be important to discuss in a relationship. The conversation was very important because we couldn't physically see each other but twice a month.

I begged her to let me teach her to drive so she could come see me on the days I couldn't see her but she wasn't interested. I'm a Christian and I was feeling guilty about our relationship and that drove another wedge between us. I'd go to church and the pastor would preach and I felt he was talking to me personally. Cathy didn't believe in God--another gigantic wedge. Phone conversations became dead, visits tiring, and I thought she'd be happier with someone else. I didn't feel I loved her anymore and wanted to revive that feeling but there was too much keeping us apart.

On May 5, I rode the Tour de Cure charity bicycle ride to raise money for Diabetes research. It was 100 miles, one-way from Virginia Beach to Manteo, North Carolina, where we'd have a party and then be taken back on a bus. I was to meet Miimii (ex-wife) that night for a friendly dinner and couldn't wait for a bus, so I rode 50 miles out and then back-tracked on the course, reading the small, chalked-in course arrows backwards from the other side of the road so I could find my way back to the start. I was going for a fast time and covered 100 miles in 4 hours, 54 minutes, as I ran out of water and food.

Then came the scary part--I read the wrong course arrow and rode the wrong way. Instead of riding up to where my car was parked down the road, I rode away and into the countryside, lost. It was extremely hot and humid that day and I was exhausted, out of water, riding in the sun for 25 miles after I'd already completed 100 fast miles. My average speed dropped to 13 miles an hour and I was groaning and heaving, trying to keep myself going, sometimes collapsing over my bicycle. By the time I found out where I was and made it back to the parking lot where I'd parked, I'd sweated away 15 pounds of water. I survived and thought of Cathy a lot. I didn't want us to end.

On May 13, we were in a motel when a small tornado hit Charlottesville, just a mile down the road. Cathy and I were looking out the window. I told her it wasn't a tornado (because an obviously flimsy large radar dish in the parking lot was still standing) but I guess damage in a tornado makes no sense. Cathy loved tornados--it was her passion. She wanted to be a storm chaser. I watched the flashing lights of the storm reflecting her wide-eyed innocence. She had a childlike beauty, and when I looked at my Cinderella I thought perhaps I was not her Prince Charming after all.

I dropped her off at work on the morning of May 14, and dropped something off at her trailer. The door was open and no one was home, so I let Spike out and played with him for half an hour. Isn't he adorable?

Later that day in a computer chat, we decided to see other people. Over the course of two weeks there was hope and I'd planned to go see her on May 26, when my office told me I'd have to work that weekend too. I told her,"There's just no time to see you and you can't come see me, and I don't know what to do". We broke up for good. We both had a good cry in our respective homes. I thought perhaps down the road we might try again but we had to make the break. Neither of us was happy. We remained very close friends and still spoke and emailed many times a week but we were no longer mates. It was sad for both of us because we'd worked so hard to be together and had such joy when we were together. Life sometimes makes no sense.

Spike...looking for his car.  He finds this piece of tire...poor doggy>>>