Autumn to winter, winter into spring,
Spring into summer. Summer into fall,
So rolls the changing year, and so we change;
Motion so swift, we know not that we move.
Dinah Murlock Craik
Today is Saturday. Last week at this time our 50th wedding anniversary open house was in full swing. On this cool day, I find myself home alone. As I looked out across my spacious yard this gloomy afternoon, it was clear to see that fall is heading into its last stretch. In less than a month winter will arrive. Most of the dried out and shriveled up leaves have fallen from our trees and now blanket the ground. The oaks, walnuts, sassafras and an assortment of other species of trees are naked.
The die-hard honeysuckle clings, listlessly, along and to the rusty fence line that encloses the pasture; they must be watching the blue spruce and evergreen shrubs with envy.
Turkey buzzards hovered and scavenged over the woods nearby. Perhaps the black beauties, as viewed from a distance, were focusing their sights on a hearty meal left behind due to a field dress, Could be they were zeroing in on less or a more sizable amount of easy pickings. Worse than that, they could have been watching me! I was standing beneath the low gray canopy, still as in death, and quietly observing.
I checked out the huge aged dead and dying catalpa tree that stands between the old garage that love and hard work built and the utility shed. The sprawling landmark has witnessed the changing of many seasons. In recent days we have noticed her deterioration worsen. The tree's twin trunks of significant circumference fork from a common base. They are about to go their separate ways, possibly one sooner and one later. Lucky for us, they have adequate clearance to do whatever nature decides.
I have fond recall of spending time visiting with my then neighbors, the Holechkos, when I was a child. Often I would sit in a weathered anarondack styled chair and rest my elbows on its fat arms. Franklin Roosevelt was taken with that style of chair too. At the time I wasn't sure who he was, but I knew he was a man of importance. There, I would listen, absorb and learn.
Mary Gazda Holechko collected stamps and coins. I handled and admired them with care. I found that all stamps were not created equal and some had great value to a collector. Mary Lou, the little girl, also enjoyed the fact; she was gifted with duplicates of beautiful stamps from around the globe.
Early on I learned that all mints could not be eaten and more than that. I discovered that looking at coins with the naked eye was not nearly as rewarding as the view that a shiny and clear magnifying glass could provide. Under the shade of that old tree or elsewhere in her world, time spent with Mary was never enough. Oh, what a grand lady she was! Kind and one of a kind for sure.
John was a conversationalist and the best storyteller that I have ever known. I can hear his voice resonating in my ears, still. I enjoyed reliving the ups and downs of his life with him, his work and everything else that he shared with us was so special. My family felt like we knew his dear mother, and his and her mutual friend, Susie Gooch. He brought the store to the table.
On a lazy afternoon or in the evening when the chores were set aside, at our house and or his, we could visit Clinton, Indiana and the tiny stops along the country roads thereabouts. Casey, Mecca and Universal come to mind. He spoke of when Diamond was in the rough. Sometimes we traveled with him across the waters to other countries. We didn't need to pack a suitcase and buy a ticket to be there. He painted pictures with words. We loved his delivery and thirsted for more!
Scary tales concerning funeral homes ghosts gravediggers and graveyards could be heard. Repetition was welcomed. The Lynch kids went with him to work at the railroad yard without leaving our seats on the back stoop and well curb, at our place. We learned about his Austro-Hungarian heritage. He talked of hardships and triumph. His was a captive audience and he was a maker of happy memories.
If that old worn out catalpa tree could talk, I know, full well, it would agree, its life on this earth has been well spent. That old workhorse has served, plant life, insects, birds, fur bearing animals and us well.
Soon she will meet up with the chain saws and someone else will know her worth and feel the warmth emitted from her well - seasoned self, if only for a little while.
This morning the phone rang. Our daughter, Lori Ann Patrick called to inform us that she has a new grandchild. The great-grandparents are elated! Leiland Michael Peace is the son of Sarah Cory and William Peace. He weight was 7 lbs, 3 oz. at birth. Both mother and precious baby are doing well. Now Cadin has a brother.
There are four other spellings of the name besides that which Will and Sarah chose to give their little boy.
The popular boy's name and surname is of Old English origin and means "one who lives by unseeded land."
In February, Piper Terry will join our family. Avery Isabella will have a sister! God is good.
I can be reached at 446-4852 or drop me a line to 613 North Elm Street, Brazil, IN., 47834 firstname.lastname@example.org.