Canal du Centre

Canal du Centre

Tuesday, November 8, 2022

November 8, 2022

 This is a post I never, ever expected to have to write.

From Moissac we spent a couple of days on the Tarn bankside in the trees. We returned to Moissac, travelled further up the canal to Pommevic and visited another of the “Most Beautiful Villages in France”, Auvillar, a 6 k bike ride away from the canal. From there we turned around for one more day on the river and then returned to Castelsarrasin on Sept. 2. Oldtimer would spend the winter there.

Cathy Jo had been feeling a little fatigued and had not much of an appetite since about the middle of August but we began the pre-winter chores. She would work about a half day and then rest. We tried to get a doctor’s appointment for a checkup but as we were unable to book an appointment before our departure she decided to “tough it out” until our return to the US.

By the 20th, though, she couldn’t get out of bed. Valerie, one of the Port Capitaines, called an ambulance and Cathy Jo was taken to the local hospital. By Saturday she had been transferred to the big hospital in Toulouse where she was diagnosed with leukemia.

After 5 weeks of treatment, the doctors in Toulouse judged her stable enough to fly and our travel insurance company arranged repatriation flights, complete with an accompanying doctor and nurse, ambulance rides at each end and wheel chairs through the airports. She arrived at our local hospital late Tuesday night, October 25 and was checked in for evaluation and decisions on further treatment.

Complications began almost immediately as late Thursday night she developed an infection. It was just a typical e coli bacterial infection but since her immune system was so weak, she was immediately transferred to the ICU. 

Despite all the doctors and nurses could do, she continued to decline and she died early Wednesday morning, Nov. 2.

I guess the blog ends here, pending decisions about what to do with Oldtimer. I’ve lost my traveling companion of the last 44 years. We had a great life and when her illness began and we realized the prognosis was not good she did tell me she had no regrets, for which I am grateful.

Hug those closest to you and remind them you love them.

Our first trip to France, 2005

Working on Odysseus, 2007

Veurne, 2008

Veurne again, 2017

Portland, Oregon, 2020

Ampuis, 2022