Exploring the Past

i282600889612076449._szw1280h1280_Mike and I have embarked on the biggest tour that we have ever taken in our trailer. It is a very special trip centering around a visit with our eldest grandson, Andrew, at Purdue University. We’ll see him this coming Saturday in conjunction with the annual Family Weekend. We decided to plan our route so that it goes through Arkansas and Kentucky because much of the family history of my father’s ancestors played out in those states. We are hoping to locate the grave sites of my great grandfather, great grandmother, and my great great grandmother. It will be quite an adventure. 

We set out from Houston on Sunday and made our first stop at Caddo Lake State Park near Jefferson, Texas. It’s a place that we keep visiting because it is breathtakingly beautiful with its pine forest and the ancient cypress trees that grow along the shores of the lake. It’s a boater’s and fisherman’s paradise but also a tranquil space where we always lose the stresses and anxieties of daily living. 

We’ve outfitted our trailer so that there are no amenities lacking. My kitchen is stocked with everything that I need to make gourmet meals. We’ve added lighting and storage spaces so that we can take games and books and extra clothing in preparation for any kind of change in the weather. I love sitting at the table at night with the windows open and the sounds of the wind and nature lulling me into a state of total relaxation.  Continue reading “Exploring the Past”

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Mercy and Understanding

i282600889612034332._szw1280h1280_Like everyone I was a bit solemn on Friday, September 11. I will never forget that horrific day of fourteen years ago when it seemed as though we were in the midst of a nightmare that not even Stephen King might have imagined. I remember wondering if the world that I had always known would ever be the same. In some ways I have to admit that it is not exactly as it had been before. The trouble with terror is that it does strange things to the mind. Even though we have essentially gone about our routines for the last fourteen years deep inside our psyches is a kind of fear that did not exist prior to the terrible event that we all witnessed. We want to be our old optimistic selves but that day has taught us to beware.

For a time there seemed to be a great deal of good that followed the attack on the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center. We really did appear to come together as a nation. I vividly recall receiving phone calls from family members and friends who just wanted to say that they loved me. My neighbors came out from their homes that evening and we talked in our yards and thanked God that all of us were safe. We expressed our feelings for each other lest we not have the opportunity to do so in a future that seemed so uncertain. We spoke of our country in the most patriotic ways. We related the things that were really important like family and freedom and love. Out of the evil of that day we seemed to be awakened from a state of complacency and taking our lives for granted.   Continue reading “Mercy and Understanding”