The Big Apple, O Canada, O-H-I-O, LA, & SacTown
My recent trip to the U. S. was a whirlwind of travel and great experiences. I started in New York City, meeting up with my wife, Chawn and spending time with our daughter Tory. While there we stayed with a former player of mine, Steve Mayes, in Harlem. Because of my Aunt passing away, I shifted my plans and took a flight to Bangor, ME. From there I made a 5 hour drive to a little town in New Brunswick, Canada for the funeral. Funerals and weddings tend to be rare occasions that bring many family members together that have not seen each other for extended periods of time. This was no exception. I was able to spend quality time with seven of my first cousins and their families. Sad to say, I had not seen them for 13 years. It was a real gift for me and I know it meant a lot to them for me to be there.
The day after the funeral I drove back to Bangor and took a flight back to New York. Chawn picked me up at the airport and we drove straight through to Ohio. This crazy travel just added to my jet lag I was still feeling from my flight from India.
Chawn and I were able to go to the MVNU Homecoming and the opening of the brand new Ariel Arena. This was a facility that I spent years helping to plan and design. It was great to see it come to fruition. It is one of the best small college arenas in the country. My greater joy was to see all my former players there. The stories were flowing. They get better as the years go by.
The next week I flew to LA to spend a week with my sons, Preston and Bryn. They have a new apartment that overlooks the city skyline. I was able to hear Bryn's band (Hotstop) practice....a true garage band. They have had a couple of "gigs" since I left. The potental is there. Later in that week Bryn and I attended the filming of the "Conan Show". That was a unique experience to see all the things that go into the production that you don't see on the air.
Then the three of us drove up to Sacramento to a Kings game. Because of my position as national team coach for India we were hosted by Vivek Ranadive and the Kings front office staff. While there I brainstormed with them on how they can help the growth of basketball in India while promoting the Kings as well. It was a great day and I'm glad I was able to share it with my sons. We had an unexpected treat on our way out of Sacramento. I had made arrangements to see a friend of mine (Michael Funk) that I had not seen for about 30 years. He was hosting an event for after school programs and they brought in Kareem Abdul Jabar as a spokesman. It was a privilege to talk basketball with him for a few minutes.
I packed a lot of enjoyable and productive experiences in a short period of time. Chawn and I have returned to India and I'm right back to doing what I love to do. COACH Salt & Light