Blog Archives

Getting ready for more snow…

According to the weather rep;ort, we’re going to have snow tonight and into the early morning hours (before the sun comes out and melts it all off again.) That’s been the routine once or twice in this Spring-like Winter… not like the snow drifted Winters I grew up with in New England.

In a way, I feel sorry for kids who don’t get to experience the snow-fort building, snow angel making opportunities of February. Too bad.

The snow we’ve been getting here is half rain and very squishy… makes your shoes all wet. It’s very unpleasant to walk the dogs in (they don’t seem to like it either.)

Oh well, groundhog or not, Spring isn’t far away.

What I remember on 9/11

Ten years ago, I lived in Marlborough, CT, a small town just south of Hartford, with a population made up mostly of commuters. Most of us worked in Hartford or other nearby towns (I was then working for Computer Sciences Corporation in East Hartford), but some went longer distances.

Marlborough is the kind of town where everyone meets everyone else over coffee on Sunday Mornings at the local bakery, or at the local grocery after work, or at town hall for our frequent, New England style, town meetings… or at our children’s sports events at the grade school basketball court or on our local baseball diamond.

Jim Hobin was one of the people you spoke with at these events.

Jim was one of the mainstays of the Marlborough Youth Athletic League which ran our local Baseball and Basketball programs for kids. In 2001 he was my son Buddy’s Basketball Coach. The previous year he had coached his baseball team.

Nobody worked better with kids than Jim Hobin… and he was always there fore the MYAL… he loved Baseball especially and you’d frequently find him mowing the grass at our small ball field, or  chalking the base lines, or painting the benches. He loved keeping that field ready for the teams.

He was particular known for training the kids and playing EVERY child for an equal amount of time… something that always amazed us, because his teams usually won.

While much of his work was done traveling all over the country for Marsh and McLennen, once or twice a month he had to go the 150 miles or so to New York to the company offices in the World Trade Center. September 11th was one of those days. Jim always left early in the morning to make it to the office on time… it was not like him to be late for anything.

When the first plane hit the WTC, I was at my East Hartford desk at CSC listening to the news on a local radio station as I worked on my computer. At first it was reported as a small plane accident, then the second plane struck and the whole event was devastatingly clear. My partner came over to my desk to listen to the report… then like all the employees in my division we gathered in the lunchroom and watched the buildings collapse over and over on television.

No work was done that day… we all went home to be with our families.

When I got there my wife told me that Jim Hobin had been at the WTC that morning and no one was able to get hold of him. His wife, Sheila, was especially upset at the lack of contact.

In fact, Jim was one of those whose body was never found or identified.

So, on 9/11, like most people who lived in Marlborough, I don’t think about terrorists, or war, or world politics… I think of Jim Hobin and what he meant to our children and to all of us.

10 years later, nothing has changed.

We missed the blizzard here on the WV Eastern Panhandle…

The storm stayed to our east and effected the coastline all the way up to New England. New York City was snowed in this morning, with closed airports and really slow moving traffic through semi-plowed streets.

My daughter Cassandra and my grandson Milo left Connecticut before the storm to get down here to stay with her sister (where we are all going for dinner tonite), and my son and his fiancee got out of Connecticut early, too, heading for DC last night.

We had a few snowflakes that didn’t leave a trace of anything… but it has been cold and quite windy here in Shepherdstown. Hope your weather is bearable today.