Sunday, February 8 through Saturday, February 14, 2015
Sunday (Marriage): At the start of this year I promised that I’d spend more time with Carole. Since I’m still working very long hours each day, the only time I can make to fulfill this obligation is in the early morning. We wake before 4:00 am. I iron her nursing uniform while she makes us breakfast and completes school assignments. Then I drive her to the hospital where she works. The extra time together is nice, but it comes at a cost of sacrificing my morning exercise routine. Each day I’m falling further behind in my running schedule. I’ll have to make up with longer runs later, because I’ll be traveling to the Bay area later this week and I’ve got a lot of work to complete in anticipation of that time away.
Monday (Family): Last night I had dinner with my mother and grandmother. They were happy to hear about Carole and I have made plans to remain in Orange County after Carole graduates in the spring. When Carole earns her degree, we’re planning to purchase a home where we can advance our retirement plans. Preparing for our retirement remains a priority for us both. We’ve gone back and forth on our approach. Considerations have included purchasing another rental property in the Bay area, purchasing a duplex that will allow us to earn an income from one unit while we live in the other. Our latest plan is to purchase a beautiful home. We could generate an income from the property by using it as a retreat for postoperative care patients who had plastic surgery. Plans may change again in the months to come. Whatever we choose, my mom and grandma were happy to learn that at least we’ve settled on remaining near them in Southern California. We ate a Cuban meal that my mom prepared for me while we discussed our different options.
Tuesday (Prison and Sentencing Reform): Today’s work was all about last-minute preparations before my trip to the Bay area. I made some additional edits to an article that I wrote for the UC Hastings Law Review and also worked through the presentation that I’ll be giving. All of this work helps my mission of spreading awareness about the need to reform our nation’s criminal justice system. At the last minute I wrote an article for a public policy group that asked me to contribute thoughts on steps we could take to reduce the number of parolees who return to prison.
Wednesday (Prison and Sentencing Reform): I gave a presentation at Google today. That was really an awesome experience. My host was Maximus Yaney, an incredibly bright engineer who designed a drone through his company, Titan Aerospace. Google acquired his company last year and he joined Google to engineer new projects that would lead to the advancement of civilization. I presented for 90 minutes. My audience included a small, influential group of Google engineers. We met in a conference room for one of the research laboratories. Following the presentation, I joined Maximus and four others for lunch in one of the cafeterias. Maximus then took me on a tour of the campus. The energy at Google is truly impressive. I snapped many photographs that I’ve already shared on the social media. Facebook posts generated more than 5,000 views. Speaking with this type of audience brings this social problem to people who can help influence meaningful reform and change.
Thursday (Networking): I left Silicon Valley early and drove to San Francisco. After dropping off my luggage at the hotel in Union Square, I returned the rental car and then walked to the lobby of the Hilton Hotel. Carole and I used to spend a lot of time at the hotel when I was confined to the halfway house in the Tenderloin, during my final year of imprisonment. She would wait for me in the lobby. Whenever the halfway house would issue me a pass to leave, I’d join her for coffee. Those were good times, but these are much better times. The hotel allowed me to check in around 11:00. I then showered and changed. I walked to the Federal Courthouse for a meeting with Jodi Linker, an exceptional lawyer who devotes her career to helping people get the best possible outcome from criminal justice proceedings. Jodi, like many lawyers, have been a big help to me. After meeting with her I walked to the law school for a meeting with Professor Rory Little. Rory is going to write the introduction for an article the law review at UC Hastings will publish.
Friday (Public speaking): The symposium at UC Hastings was really an extraordinary opportunity. I left my room early so that I could begin working from the hotel lobby. I posted a few photos and videos on the social media, then made my way through San Francisco’s Tenderloin district and to the law school. I walked right in front of the halfway house on the corner of Taylor and Turk, where I spent my final year as a federal prisoner. The all-day symposium brought several influential people from the legal community together. Before it began I had a long conversation with Steve Cook, an Assistant United States Attorney who leads the criminal division in the judicial district of Tennessee. I met several other federal prosecutors, federal judges, law professors, and defense attorneys. I even met some people who traveled to the symposium for the specific purpose of listening to my presentation. Their support for the work I do encouraged me. My presentation closed the symposium. A wonderful dinner for the participants followed in one of the law school’s dining rooms.
Saturday (Travel): Early this morning I boarded a flight from San Francisco back to Orange County. I really like living in Southern California. The trip was really magnificent, but it’s good to be back at my office. I spent the entire day doing follow-up work. That means writing letters to the many people I met at the conference. I’m hopeful that I’ll build lasting relationships with some of the influential people I met.
Miles for week: 10.02
Miles for month: 31.71
Miles for year: 151.58
Link to 2015 running log: Running Log