Monday, May 31, 2010

Catching Up

Memorial Day weekend... why is it that when we are young, we can never remember which is Memorial and which is Labor Day?  It's only with the gravitas of maturity that we remember that Memorial Day is for those, our parents, brothers and sisters, loved ones, or friends who served our country before us and alongside us, to remember and thank them for sacrificing their time or lives to our defense and good.  Married to a retired career soldier, I think about these things throughout the year, but it's nice for the country to remember not just them but our own families who have gone before.  We really do have only fifteen minutes, maybe fifteen seconds in world history.... I don't know my great grandparents, barely knew two grandparents.  One was a quiet Irish alchoholic, who was "gone after" on holidays, my mom or dad disappearing from holiday preparations to drive overtown and fetch him to dinner.  I can remember him sitting at the table and eating, and then retiring to my dad's easy chair, where he would sleep until time to go home again.  The other, my dad's mom, a dour old lady who did not cuddle her grandkids, but sat us on little stools or stood us in a row before her to ask us questions.  My little sister and I were a little scared of both. 

I wish now I had been old enough to really talk to them, and find out what their young lives were like.  I have only one picture of my grandpa's brother, a jaunty man with a cap on his head, smiling against a backdrop of a house that is old and decrepit now, taken at the turn of the last century.  Yet they walked the streets before us, went in the shop doors, knelt in the same church pews.  They are there but just beyond the veil.

Recent illness has affected our little place here at Calamity Acres.  Starting with the loss of our dear little Addie Mae, we have had other losses, and one happy gain, Abby... a little pug of winsome cuteness.  Keith has been ill and hospitalized, and with a heavy heart, we have decided that our poor old Uncle Beau will soon be gone.  Ill and old, he has shrunken to skeletal proportions, and after vetting him and feeding him special feed, we have realized old age can't be cured.  Tomorrow our good Doctor Jeannie comes to let him rest finally.  His companion Lilly will go home to her owners, our friends Joani and Michael, and we will be horseless for the first time in four years.  Half of our flock is gone, as well, gifted to friends.  Tonight Joani and Michael will take some of the bantams home with them when they go.... reducing the numbers to that which I can take care of alone. 

Grandson Chris has been here off and on for several weeks, helping while Keith recuperated, and has been a great help indeed.  I'll miss him when he goes back to Garnett. 

Have a Happy Memorial Day, my friends... and a good start to your work weeks!

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