how much I loved him.
I met Peter (Penguin) at an Indy car race at Monterey about 15 years ago. At that time I lived in So Cal and had no idea how important to my life he would become. We saw each other at the occasional race over the next few years because of mutual friends. When I finally moved north about 10 years ago, he opened his heart and his home and his friends to me. He was always there if I needed to move my whole house or just a big pot in the yard.
He drank and smoked too much, but he didn't have a mean bone in his body. In fact, he really didn't know how to say no to anyone. He took great pride in his beautiful yard. Was always puttering and planting, mowing and weeding. Putting in a walkway or building a gate. And Christmas! OMG, at Christmas, he did love his lights! The house had more lights than an airport landing strip.
He started getting sick a couple of years ago. They tested & tested. Couldn't find anything wrong, but managed to puncture his bowel doing a colonoscopy. It has been all downhill from there. He never really recovered from that and then was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer not all that long ago.
I regret we didn't make the Giants game or the Reba concert that we always talked about. I regret that I didn't make the effort to spend more time with him this last few months. I talked to him on the phone, but that is not the same as sitting in the back yard sharing a beer.
And I'm angry that a disease like cancer can take such a good person from his friends and family and leave perverts walking the streets. It's not fair and I don't like it.
Peter's leaving this world has left a huge hole in my heart.