When you're really down, look to your friends

... Perhaps Lahey Clinic will pull me through again!

from Don Norris

Sometimes you never know who your friends are.

Take today, for instance. Here I sit at home, going through pre-op for open
heart surgery -- and I get a beautiful card signed by every member
of the new girls' volleyball team! Coaches, too!

Because of my impairment, I haven't been able to follow the development of
the new club this season -- so I've really never met about half the players.
But they did it -- they signed the card and wrote an encouraging messages
as if we have been old friends.

That really helps -- when one thinks about what's about to happen, one can
appreciate small kindnesses.

I've been covering the girls' volleyball team for many years -- mainly
because I played national level ball, was an organizer of the New England
Volleyball Association, and eventually had to have my right shoulder
surgically rebuilt from playing too much volleyball.

And for the past ten or so years, in retirement, I've been able to photograph
not just the team as a group, but the individual players -- through practice,
warmup, league games and tournaments. It has been fun for me, a new
hobby and the players seem to love it when they see their picture in action -
- usually in Dr. Ronald Sen's volleyball website. Thank goodness for Dr. Sen
and co-host Dick Collis.

I am pretty sure it was Athena Ziavras who alerted the team and coaches. I
stopped down to the gym one day, before school opened, and Athena was
the only person in the gym: Athena was a star hitter for the club for several
years. She's now about to graduate from college, but keeps active in MHS
volleyball as a young coach.

So I offer a special Thank You to the club and Coaches Celli and Wall -- and
to Athena.

I trust, as you are reading this, that the crisis is over, I am whole again --
and back on the court snapping flicks of our Melrose High team.

It's a great sport. Come on down! And say Hello.

Editor's note - Don's surgery went well and he is recuperating.

October 2, 2015

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