Saturday, August 25, 2007


My Wife The Filanderer?

Last evening memaw and I went down into the valley to fetch Miz Clara and take her with us to dinner and then a play at Stained Glass Theater.
Miz Clara came out with an envelope and presented it to Memaw. She opened it and there it was, a picure of Memaw with another man; a rather nice looking younger man.
Actually he is a singer at Hard Luck Diner where the two of them had lunch a few weeks ago.
A lady at another table was from Oklahoma and was kind enough to photograph them posing with the live entertainment and send copies from her home Oklahoma .

The play was good, we were able to share from the garden with Miz Clara and enjoy her companionship.

Ain't God good?
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Saturday, August 18, 2007

Water Guns, a Train Robbery, and Shoulder dancing at McDonalds

Yesterday morning I discovered the Marmots have eaten the big green cushaw pumpkin in my garden. It would soon have been ready to harvest and probably all ready weighed nearly twenty pounds.

What a disappointment! The recent three digit temperatures and extended drought have taken their toll, and now this.

The children were not cooperating in anything! They come from a part of the world where hardly anything works well and the only reason to be in a hurry is to get to food!

It also seems not much is expected out of them until about age twelve. It is often a chore to get them to do the simplest little tasks. As always with little children, it would be easier to perform the tasks ones self. Common experiences to be sure, but the consequences of low expectations from his former existence are still present, exacerbated by the fact that Yonatan, six, until three months ago had not been taught ANYTHING and now, as well as having grown an inch taller, he has acquired a bit of language. With language comes other abilities and he does well, but there are frustrating times.

Fetlework, eight years old, self proclaimed princess of the universe, shut herself in the bathroom as we prepared to leave on a surprise adventure and didn’t emerge until she had re-done her hair. Memaw, Poppy and Yonatan waited.

Finally we arrived at Silver Dollar City. We walked hand in hand through the crowds, went on several rides including the train, experienced a train “robbery,” and then went to the part of the park we all enjoy most. The name escapes me but there is a lagoon, water gushing everywhere, and big water guns like the nozzles on a fire hose.

Yonatan is King of the lagoon! No matter how many folks direct the spray from “their” guns he reigns supreme. Shooting and ducking, he endures the high-pressure streams and won’t quit. I can attest to this having become completely water logged as a direct result of his unerring accuracy and tenacity.

Finally it was time to leave and return home. Memaw had started a pork roast in the slow cooker and Rebecca had finished her job and was at our house completing dinner preparations.

We broke the rules! And stopped at McDonalds for ice cream BEFORE dinner. Grandparents, after all, can do that.

As we sat in the booth I decided to demonstrate my talent at dancing with my shoulders. If you haven’t been to Ethiopia you probably cannot fully understand this.

Yonatan, the happiest kid on the planet, will stand on the porch all alone and perform traditional Ethipoian dance just because.

How does a little deaf kid learn to dance? I suppose we will never know.

Yonatan and Fetlework were quick to demonstrate correct methods, Memaw tried but only was able to kind’a move her head forward and back. And we laughed!

I suppose the other folks in the place thought we were ………………Well, we didn’t care what they thought, we were enjoying with our grandchildren.

On the ride home they squiggled and giggled in the back seat and waved at passing motorists.

Dinner was excellent and in spite of the fact they had eaten ice cream just a half hour earlier, the children ate well.

After dinner the six of us talked and laughed until the old house rocked.

Too soon it was time for Rebecca, Vernon, and those two wonderful children God has allowed us to share our lives with needed to go “up the hill” to their house.

God is good!

Shalom for now,

Wednesday, August 01, 2007


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It has become a custom of sorts on mornings when I “baby sit” the children that we go for a walk. Fetelework, eight, is the instigator of this and Yonaton, six, really would rather not, amidst complaints that he is tired.

On a recent morning as we began our trek to the mail box nearly a half mile away, I snuffed something into my throat and was obliged to remove it.

I stepped to the side and spit.

Yonaton, about two steps behind, imitated the action.

Although I was once a little boy myself I never quite understood the spitting exercise in which boys seem to forever engaged, but I very well understand them imitating the older fellows. It’s how they learn. All mammals do it.

The problem is, often the one we imitate is less of an example than one might hope.

Yonaton is deaf and only two and a half months ago he was living in Africa with relatives. His father is dead and his mother, unable for whatever reason to care for him, gave him up for adoption. That was one of the most unselfish acts ever.

The woman suffered the loss of her son, to be sent half way around the planet because there is absolutely no future for a deaf child where they were.

As we walked, he scuffled and shuffled in true little boy fashion. We peered through the cover that surrounds the lane in a vain search for wildlife while Fetelework selected wildflowers for a bouquet.

I have lived through many fads and fazes during the last decades; war and plenty, seriousness and foolishness. One of the most foolish was the feminist movement.

I suppose there is benefit in any and all of these “movements” but for the life of me I could never understand how supposedly intelligent, rational thinking people could come to the conclusion that boys and girls are the same except for the obvious difference in their plumbing!

These two beautiful children that God has allowed us to learn from came to us from a different culture, where different languages are spoken, and one of the most economically depressed areas of the world, yet he acts just like any little boy, and she just like any little girl.

Ain’t that sumthin?

As we neared the curve in the drive on our return to the house the “tired” little Yonaton began to run. He ran to the car, got inside, and hid.

Fetelework went to the side of the car opposite where he crouched, opened the door, and sat in the seat next to him. He felt the movement and gripped the door handle more tightly until finally he turned and saw her there in the seat.

They are deaf but they can laugh and laugh they did.

Ain't God good?
Shalom for now,

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