Wrapping things up, dogsitting, working hard…

We’ve been dogsitting Cowboy for three weeks now. He is a spectacularly beautiful, well-behaved and friendly Golden Retriever. He is sitting under my desk licking my feet right no, as I type. It does give us pause. We’ve told the kids we can get a dog after we move back to America. But in some way our family does feel sort of complete with a dog. It’s hard to admit that and we’re not rushing out for anything, but it feels very natural having Cowboy here.

Of course, it’s hard to guarantee that you get a spectacular animal like Cowboy, though I for one am all for dumping a reject pet and trying again. It’s too important of a decision to fall in love with a less than perfect beast.. All of the kids love him, but Eli is really just so nice and sweet with him. He has always loved dogs and he is so excited to have Cowboy here. He talks to him all the time, feeds him, walks him…

These pictures are from the last supper with our friends Ted and Ilene and their kids (pictured here) Eliana and Zach. They were family I wrote about in my column a while back, the ones who still didn’t know their fate for next year. Well, the chps fell to them going back, and they are in the Bay Area now.

We are wrapping things up, getting ready to leave Saturday for almost a month. It’s been nice to be here the last few weeks, if sometimes a little surreal.. it’s just so empty and quiet and peaceful. But you find the folks who are here and hang out and it feels relaxed. We had a barbecue last night and there were about 13 adults and 12 kids here, so it’s not like there’s a shortage of people to hang out with.

We’re going back so late that some folks are already starting to come back. We are going to miss the first week-plus of school because we decided to be there for my nephew Josh’s bar mitzvah. Two other big int’l schools start two weeks earlier than us, so it’s really the end of the summer for them. It’s a little strange to be on such a different schedule than everyone else, but it feels kind of nice. Our early summer was so hectic that these languid weeks have been welcome.

Especially welcome because we’re quite busy with work. I am leaping into Olympics reporting. I just did three big pieces for Sports Business Journal’s one-year-from –the 08-Game special package. I’ll post them here after they’ve been out a while, but they’re not the most scintillating to general readers. Stories about Olympic ticketing and hospitality as well as 5 Things to Watch Out For in Beijing (including air pollution – which has been horrible, traffic and more.)

I also am doing some pieces right now for NBCOlympics.com. I’ll post a link when they go up. I have high hopes for this collaboration. We’ll see how that goes.

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