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Hello out there. I have been — and still am — off-line. I am doing the column the old-fashioned way this weekend. Some time during the storm and outage Thursday a week ago, my Hughes Net went out. I was busy cleaning and setting up for the Hand and Foot party on Friday, so I didn’t use the computer. Friday, I was actually preparing for and giving the above. When I came upstairs I sent an e-mail to Ann, who was at Pawley’s Island at the time and went to the den to rest. It wasn’t until Saturday morning that I realized the e-mails I’d sent Friday were still in the “out box.” Naturally, these things only happen on weekends and a holiday weekend at that. It wasn’t until Tuesday that I could call and report the problem. I was switched to a technician in India. That didn’t go well. By Thursday I was tearing out my hair, what there is of it.
To make a long story, etc., etc., I won’t be getting a real person to come and fix my problem until June 14. I feel like I am living in the “Dark Ages.”
The beautiful weather we have been having has enabled us to get a couple of outdoor projects started. John has finally gotten his screened-in porch project started — first the demolition, then the putting back. He found rot in the lower part of his support post. I took a load of debris to Owenton to the dump last Tuesday. Mike was the only one at the gate, so I was elected to unload all the wood and stuff alone. I had made a start when two ladies came to throw away their trash. The older lady had seen some lattice work that she could use. They stayed and helped me unload the whole truck and salvaged some of the usable stuff for themselves. I asked their names — Carol and Lee Merchant — so I could thank them properly in the Kay’s Branch News.
Wanda called me Thursday afternoon to remind me of the early deadline for that week. She told me that Dara Carlisle and Pat Kennedy had been on a trip to England and Scotland the end of May. I let the time slip away from me that evening and forgot to call, so I sent a brief e-mail to the editor saying there would be no column. That’s one of the e-mails still stuck in my “out box.”
I did call Dara this Saturday and learned about their trip. They flew to London, then traveled by train and bus to most of their destinations. They first went to Scotland to a town called Crieff, where Dara’s grandmother was from. She said they also toured the area and visited other places while in Scotland. She said the country was beautiful. They then went back to England and toured some of that country, too. After three days or so, they joined Pat’s Preservation Trades Network and went to Lincoln, England. Dara said it was magnificent and that words can’t begin to describe stonework, tiling and art. They spent three days there. Their group was invited by the officials of the cathedral to a sit-down dinner on the first night, a pig roast on the second and an all-day fair on Saturday. This was a crafts fair in the tradition of the crafts made a thousand years ago. That was the highlight of their trip, but she said they enjoyed all of it. The countries were beautiful and the weather was cool and damp. I told her she could have stayed home and had “cool and damp.”
I have been taking care of Ann’s animals and mail for the past two weeks. They took a week’s vacation at Pawley’s Island the end of May. They got home Saturday evening. She came down Sunday afternoon to tell me about their trip. They had perfect beach weather for the whole two weeks and come home with great suntans. You can’t beat that.
Rastus reported at church last Sunday that Jerry Kemper had to have a toe removed and wasn’t doing so well. But this week he said Jerry was out of rehab and at home doing much better.
Ron Holland, who has been on our prayer list, learned that his father was dying. He lived in Illinois, Doreen said. Ron’s son, Jon, drove him up there to see him. He passed away only a day or so after they came home. Our thoughts and prayers are with Ron and his family.
Lou Ann is having cataract surgery Tuesday. She said she’s see me next Sunday.
There will be a meeting Thursday at the Monterey Community Center. In case you are new to the area, that is T’s old store, or the brick building attached to the old bank. We would like to have everybody who is interested in reviving some community spirit and ideas on how best to accomplish that. The fires and floods of the past few years have taken the heart out of what once was a very good place to live. If you would like to see your community come alive again, come and be a part of making it happen. The meeting will be at 7 p.m. Bring pencil and paper and ideas.
Memorial Sunday Rastus was telling us about a car that had burnt up on the Landing Road. He said the girl got out of it and that she was from Kay’s Branch. I could not think of anybody on this road that it could be. This week he said he had found out that it was Kenny O’Banion’s granddaughter. Wanda brought her news up a few minutes ago and the first story was that Jean O’Banion, Kenny’s wife, had hit a deer on 127 near Tracy’s Lane. She had some damage to the front of her car but was able to drive it home.
Pat came to church Memorial Sunday, and we went to Robbie to visit with Johnny Bob and Robbie. We had a very good visit. Johnny Bob is walking without his walker now.
As I started to church that morning, I saw Rowdy lying on the bank by the side of the road in the lower yard. As I got closer I realized he was dead. He had been hit by a car sometime Saturday night. I turned around and parked in the driveway and called John. He came down immediately, helped me wrap him in an old sack and was preparing to bury him as I left for church, yet again. Pat showing up that morning was a godsend. I am a dog person. When you acquire a pet, you set yourself up for grief and loss. But if you love animals, the time that you have with them is worth it. I have felt sad at his loss and won’t replace him for a while. But from past experience, I will have another. The joy they bring you makes up for the pain of loss.