Go Great Circle

Friday, November 30, 2012

Great Circle Logo

So, this is the Logo my daughter Kayla designed for our "Great Circle" trip.  Pretty cool isn't it.

One Eye Kirk - What's in a Name.

One Eye Kirk.

sounds like a singer of the blues.

As is, the moniker for this blog is part theater, part present history, and part spiritual vision.

(waiting on the doc.  First time to use my camera phone.)

Several months ago I started noticing some abnormalities in my vision.  I looked at a crescent moon  and swore it had two tips... on each end.  I wondered if there was some kind of strange eclipse.  Then I noticed I kept trying to bend and straighten my glasses.  It seemed like one of the lenses in my glasses was askew..  I kept seeing distortion, like a looking trough the edge of a windshield.

It wasn't till I actually covered my right eye (my "shooting" eye) that I actually noticed my left eye was seeing the world all wonky.  Think of having a big drop of honey on your glasses or a little funny mirror right in the middle of your vision.  Beyond that, the world as viewed through my left eye was about an "F-stop" darker.  Like wearing medium sunglasses.

So I made a b-line to the optometrist...who turned me over to retina specialist.

I was subject to a small battery of tests, including one where they put glowing die in my blood so they could photograph the back of my eye.  Later I would pee florescent.  They showed me a grid chart.  All the lines in the lower right corner collapsed.

The eye doctor confirmed I had something called "Pigment Epithelial Detachment" -- in short a blister on the back of my retina, with that rich seeing rod-and cone stratum, pulled from the back of my eye.

Then he told me words that made me a little anxious.  My condition might self heal, but there is not a lot to be done.  We should wait.   Laser surgery or steroids might irritate my eye, leading to greater damage.

In the meantime, my vision just kept getting worse. Lines that should have looked like Twiggy looked more like Beyonce.   I knew even the prescription for my good eye needed adjusting, so together, I was having a hard time with camera focus... and even a harder time viewing my work on computer.   I am a God conscious man.  He gave me my eyes.  He can take them back.   But I was concerned.

Went for a second opinion.   Map of the back of my eye, showed the blister had bloomed.   He suggested that It is highly probable that I have early Wet-form Macular Degeneration.  I would later find MD it runs in the family.

Long story short.  I am receiving treatment for my eye, that consists of a series of shots... delivered straight into my eye.   They are using a drug... developed for cancer patients  that will target the capillaries growing under my retina.   I have never been one given to taking meds, and the cost of all this is astonishing.   Funny.   I have long wanted a real nice set of speakers.  And now I spend that much on a single shot in my eye.   Vision is both common... and terrible (in that old sense of the word.)   I cannot imagine how some  folks function without it.  I earn my living with my eyes... So I let them pump away.

And now.  Good news.  I am seeing much better.  After two shots, there is considerably less distortion in my left eye.  I still see a discolored dull spot, and I am getting new glasses to boot.  But I am relieved.  And PROFOUNDLY thankful.   For medical treatment.  For answered Prayers.  For the love of friends who have shared their concerns.  And for the ongoing ability to praise God by looking at His world with the eyes he has loaned me.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Go Great Circle #2: Charlie's Dream

In the next day or two I need to write a very special letter to my Father’n Law – Dad McGinn.  Ever since I was a teenage boy, I have dreamed of being a National Geographic Photographer, prancing around the globe, or living in the ruts, mixing it up with folks in exotic lands.  

                                                                                                                       Charles McGinn

As God, in his goodness would have it, I HAVE known a greater part of my dreams.   Wife, Kids, camera.  Indeed,  I have the raw pleasure of shooting pictures most everyday.  And some of the folks are occasionally exotic.  For the unacquainted, I work for the State of Arkansas, serving our Governor Mike Beebe.  Must be one of the greatest jobs on earth.  I get to watch leadership in action, tour all parts of the Natural State, and see what makes our little nation click.  But still --- its not the same as living out of a pack, under the lure of constant uncertainty.

But in a couple of days, I will come closer to my boyhood dream than I have been in decades, all due to the vision – and generosity - of McDad.

Chas/Charles has been talking the Great Circle for decades.  These days he is less apt to remember that he has had this conversation with us only recently.

Dad's vision for our trip is part Romantic – part Capitalist

He wants us to do what most folks only dream about… and make a video in the process. (Then sell it to you, even as we encourage you to join us in your own planet circling venture)

In keeping with his idea, dad wrote in a recent letter:

“Again, Make it  Great Circle, Not Great Zig Zag…   So that the journey will be the shortest possible for the cash-poor traveler.  It’s round the world, not see the world.  If people start doing this I truly believe mankind will finally begin to realize that we are all on this planet together and that there is plenty of room And that folks are pretty nice everywhere if you give them half a chance.  Least ways, there’s no reason for talking about nuclear bombing your neighbor.” 

To be continued.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Cowboy Up

                                                          Cosby and Cody - to wed, in a week.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Go Great Circle: Part 1

GGC: Kirk Jordan

What is it and why?

Over the last weeks or year, you may have heard me whisper of my forthcoming trip, something we call “The Great Circle.”  Then I blush with pleasure.

Truth is, I have tried not to talk of it too much, cause every time I do I feel like I am boasting, and then I remember the Lords’ specific injunction about declaring our future with the certainty that we control it.

            Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go into such and such a town and spend a year there and trade and make a profit”—yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we will live and do this or that.” As it is, you boast in your arrogance. All such boasting is evil. So whoever knows the right thing to do and fails to do it, for him it is sin.
(James 4:13-17 ESV)

So… with that stern warning in mind, I want to tell you what is on my plate (Lord willing) and how such a idea has come about.

On December 3rd. I intend to leave Conway Arkansas, with my daughter Kayla in tow, fly to New York City, meet up with my sister-in-law Carlin and her husband Ray/Reza (hereafter, sister and brother) then, over the course of the next month circumnavigate the globe.  From there we will hit seven major cities around the world, and return to the USA one month later.   We plan stops in Milan, Istanbul, Dubai, Mumbai, Singapore, Melbourne,  and Auckland.  (Followed by a stateside visit with my first Dad in Lincoln, Oregon.)

The idea is that of my Father-in-Law, Charles McGinn, also known as Dad, or McDad.