The surgery went well with just a little bit of complication for Todd, apparently he has tough subcutaneous tissue! This required an additional incision at his neck as the doctors threaded his shunt drain tube below his skin and to his stomach. I wanted to be clear because I understand some of you might visualize this as an external apparatus, which it is not. It is a passive internal system that is now a permanent part of Todd’s body. I was curious about the material of this drain tube and they told me it is of latex, I think of it as an additional new vein that he has. He may be a bit sore at his neck but otherwise we will hopefully being moving forward. The pressure created by the CSF fluid is the reason that everything has moved in a sort of backward or standstill motion, this shunt will enable us to again move forward. What a good thing that is.

Toetsie and I, together, received Yuksel at the train in the evening. We all had a few beers afterwards and stayed up far to late into the evening or should I say morning. Time always gets away from you here, it is like the words you can’t find. She is settling in and very glad to be here, but it is bittersweet for us because we feel Zander’s absence. They have not seen Todd since the ICU days so this will be an interesting perspective for you out there in the world. It will be the first return visitor that we will have since our time here. We will be very tired today, because no matter what time you go to sleep we will always be disturbed by the construction across the street at 8 in the morning. This is a difficult thing to manage, the balance of sleep and everything else.

Correction: Due to an unfortunate turn of events Susee will not be coming to Amsterdam. We are all a bit sad about this, but it has worked itself out quite well. Davey (he is very good at making me laugh, and also experienced at moving people) will now be arriving from San Francisco around the 9th of Dec followed by Miss Mary who will be here to ensure Christmas and New Years are not with out its small pleasures. So in other words, send nothing to Susee for she is no longer the next person en route. Johnny’s letter package leaves Oakland on Friday so we are looking forward to that….unfortunately the package does not accommodate my kayak. (I swear all these canals are meant for a rowing expedition but it does not seem to be a thing here! I did witness a couple magical rowing moments here and there. That is one of the first things I plan to do once I return home. I already have a date. Right after I lay in bed for a couple days sleeping…..)

Love to you all.
T&A, and Yuksel