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Kay’s Branch News: Surprise party is a tough secret to keep

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By Bee Spicer

It is now 32 degrees on my thermometer this morning. We had frost Sunday morning too. It looks like I can quit popping the allergy pills very soon. I did get the live plants into the garage Saturday evening. I’ve learned when they start predicting low temps for surrounding counties, it’s going to frost on the Branch. Our flowers are long gone before anybody else’s. That’s why I switched to artificial flowers to decorate for fall. They are bright and decorative long after the cold of November sets in.
I talked to Fay last night. They went to the Apple Festival this weekend. Bruce takes his knife collection and sets up there every year. She said they had wonderful weather this year and saw some old friends. Their hay is rolled and lined up near the feed lot and the garden is gone. Grass isn’t growing so the mowing isn’t demanding. This is their time for local festivals.
They were home in time to go to church on Sunday and to go out to eat with the Adkins family, who are celebrating several birthdays. Larry had one last week, their son Michael‘s was on Sunday and Danny’s was on Monday.
Since it was Michael’s birthday, he got to choose the restaurant. He chose Mexican food. Fay said it was a new adventure in eating for her.
It seems lots of folks were born in September. My nephew, Louis’ son Mark had a birthday on the 22nd.
Lou Ann is also celebrating a birthday this week, on the 25th. She will be 80 years old.
Joel told everybody at church a couple of weeks ago that he and his siblings were organizing a surprise birthday party for her at the firehouse after church on the 23rd. Now Lou has a scanner and a telephone and knows everything that goes on in the area so to give her a surprise party is next to impossible.
I couldn’t put it in the column, so Joel had to get the word out via the grapevine. We did have a couple of guests at church Sunday. Catherine Raisor, our elder statesman of Monterey Christian was there, and we sang “Happy Birthday.” Her niece Melinda was there with her but Joel was absent, with a plausible excuse. She knew nothing of the party till Melinda turned right at the highway instead of left to take her home. Joel and the men and women of the fire department had been decorating the firehouse all morning and firing up the cooker to fry fish. There was a table of side dishes and three huge birthday cakes front and center in the food area. Joel said she was really surprised. I had to go home and remove my dress shoes before coming to the party. I couldn’t see myself clomping around in heels. There were lots of people there and more kept coming  - some to eat and visit and some just to go to where Lou was sitting and say hello wish her a happy birthday. Joel made a short speech for the family saying she had always been there for them and they wanted to do something for her while she was alive to show their appreciation.
I got to see a lot of old friends. There are too many to name but it was good to make contact with them all. I left about 2 p.m. I stayed till they cut the cakes. Couldn’t miss dessert, but I wanted to watch the golf game and the guests were beginning to thin out, but it was a good party. Joel expressed his gratitude to all that attended. It was his first attempt at party-giving and he was grateful for all who showed up and it couldn’t have been for a better and dearer friend. Happy birthday Lou, and many, many more.
Can you believe something happened in the community that Wanda didn’t hear about?
She said Barbara called her Sunday evening and mentioned that she had seen me at Lou Ann’s party. She said that was the first she had heard of it. She said she and Ray had gone to Don’s store to get some fish bait and saw all the cars at the firehouse and wondered what was going on.
They had been to Louisville on Saturday with Ray’s cousin Ollie Walters, his sister Lola and several friends to Fourth Street Live to celebrate Ollie’s 50th birthday.
He really didn’t think 50 was too nifty, but he’ll realize that as he gets older, it’s only a number. They ate at the King Fish. She said Fourth Street. Live is an experience. Basically it’s a neighborhood street carnival. She said she had never seen so many people dancing in so many places at the same time. I think she was a bit overwhelmed. She likes to dance, but this was a bit much.
Wanda said if you thought your mail was a bit late last week, you were right. They’re in the midst of “mail counting.” It will continue this week and be done for this year. It had to do with the volume of mail that passes through our post office. Wanda said they were always glad when it’s over and they can get back to normal.
She mentioned the new blacktopping of the roads in the county. I had forgotten to mention the nice surface on 368 the past two weeks. To the road crews and the powers that be, we are very thankful for it.
Pat and I came home last week from Robbie’s via I-71 and came up 355 from Carrollton to Monterey. That road had been rebuilt for the flooding and washing away of a couple of years ago and is like a super highway now.  Well, I do exaggerate a bit, it’s still narrow but smooth.
John and Charity got home from the short vacation on Thursday night. They went to the Gulf Coast and drove to the panhandle of Florida. They were there for the Blue Angels Naval Air Show on Wednesday.
They were lucky enough to get to meet one of the pilots and Charity got her picture taken with him and his autograph.
She said he must have been 6’4. She’s as short as I am. They must have had to turn the camera longways to get both their heads in the shot. They had a great time and came home without incident. Mother’s always appreciate the “coming home safe” part of their children’s vacations.
October is upon us. Golf season is nearly over. Tiger hasn’t been spetacular this year, but he made the Ryder Cup, so I have one more tournament to watch before I switch my focus on basketball. I skip the football season.
The Monterey Homecoming Fair is coming up on Oct. 6 and Mount Vernon Church’s annual soup dinner is on Oct. 7.
Have a good week.