Sunday, January 08, 2006

“You, you’re the one, you are the only reason . . .”

We’re staying at the Ronald McDonald House, a lovely 37-room facility built in 1994, across the street from the Cleveland Clinic. Families from all over the world, country, and Ohio stay here while their children are receiving medical care. One family has been here for two years. Besides the bedrooms, which are like hotel rooms, the Ronald McDonald House has a large kitchen, play room, computer room, library, television room, and sitting area. The facility is largely run by volunteers. Everyone is cheerful and helpful. Many groups from around the community bring in meals. We are responsible for cleaning our rooms and laundering our sheets and towels. They give us room keys to wear around our necks, which make us feel very official. I will now be more inclined to drop spare change in the clear containers at McDonalds, where they collect money for these houses.

Our main conduit to the rest of Cleveland is Mary Hurley. For the past 11 years or so, Mary has spent half of the year in Haiti, which is where John met her. Mary works at a home for the dying run by the Missionaries of Charity. She found a host family for Jackson, whom we met last night. They stopped by the hospital today and we introduced them to Jackson. Earlier in the week, Mary took us to Little Italy, not too far away, to Mama Santa’s for some of the best pizza we’ve ever had. We’re returning to the neighborhood this evening to attend Mass at Holy Rosary.

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