November 21 – Yesterday was our once-a-week town day (as most of you loyal readers know), a day to buy groceries, stamps, and all the rest, as well as visiting some of our friends who are not enjoying good health. Always gives us a lift to be able to give them hugs and pray with them. I often wonder how I would react if I had the same problems they do, and I admire them for their desire to keep these problems out of their conversations. The son of one of our good friends has been battling cancer for almost a year now and has had the usual ups and downs that chemo brings on. But our friend still has the same twinkle in his eyes, and a strong handshake, but we know that he is suffering through all of this, as most real dads would.
As always, it was good to see our friends at the Thrift Store. Books were on sale for a dime each this time, and I was down on my knees for half an hour checking through kids’ books. While I was down, an older lady (but not as old as I am <g>), stopped and remarked as she usually does if I’m down on the floor, “Well, I see you’re still down there, and I know you can get up again, because I’ve seen you do it!” I told her that I HAD to get down. My arms are so short, I’d have to bend over too far to get a book! She smiled broadly and answered, “Well, you know, I have monkey arms, so I can reach high up or down!”
By the time I had finished looking through the three boxes of kids books, I only had time to take a quick look through those for adults. Funny thing; Dale found a coffee-table edition of The Four Seasons of Kansas, a beautiful book with many photographs of our neighboring state. Last week I had paged through it, but didn’t want to pay a dollar for it. Now, we paid a dime! The kids’ books will go to school or to church for the little ones to enjoy. I even found a pop-up book about the birth of Jesus.
We also bought two interesting games, one of which was still unopened: Cranium and Don’t Quote Me. Since our family has always enjoyed tests and quizzes and things that “boggle your mind” along with Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy, these were real treasures. Also found a Coca Cola white polar bear to join the several I already have!
We also visited briefly with Nan in her home, but didn’t get a chance to see husband Clyde. We took along a quart of homemade vegetable soup for them to try, and reminded them that our vegetable soup has nothing in it but vegetables! When it’s cold outside as it is again today, something hot is good for the stomach and the appetite. Before we left, Nan went to Clyde’s office to get the box he had filled for us. Along with a new keyboard for our computer there were two games of Scrabble, including the Deluxe Turntable Edition Scrabble, and Rummy, a version of our Rummi-Kub we usually play every night before heading off to bed.
Off then to Price Chopper where we enjoyed the big smile we received from Sheila, our friend in charge of the plant and bouquet corner. She has a way with orchids, and now that Christmas is on the way, she has been setting out poinsettias. One that we had not seen before is called Spiced Nutmeg, and has yellow/brown mixed with the red. Whenever we are talking at the store, other customers will pass by, but not without a wave and smile to Sheila, who always calls each one by name while returning the smile. I think she knows everybody in town!
Once our shopping was done, we headed home with one more stop on the way. Before we even climbed the stairs to the porch, Barney opened the door, showed pretend surprise at seeing us, and shut the door with a grin! When he opened it again, he told us that his wife Betty was back sleeping and wouldn’t be out. Handing over the vegetable soup, we started towards the door, but he wanted us to sit for a bit to talk. After awhile, we heard a little rustling from the kitchen, and there was Betty, who had left her room to come out to talk! “I knew it was your voice,” she said quietly, but with a little smile, “and I had to come out. Now,” she added, “you know I wouldn’t do that for just anybody!” When we left, Barney gave Dale three cans of cat food left over from the time he and Betty had a cat. Back at home, Cat devoured the contents of one can on the spot!
Back at home after “breakfast” at almost two o’clock, we watched our Cat as she jumped up into the bird feeder box, lying back and enjoying what little sunshine there was. Since she was the queen on the throne, the birds were noticeably absent. Later a dozen doves arrived to take up their usual space on the cement, but that was it until about an hour later when she decided to go into the garage and sleep on top of the big pile of comfy pillows and even an old bedspread. Back then came the birds, including a cowbird, the first we have seen for awhile. Two bright blue birds perched on the fence. I’m glad they stay the year round.
Speaking of the Cat, I am reminded of a cat we had once in Erie. She climbed up and got on the house roof somehow in the middle of the night, and then couldn’t get down and was calling for help in the late nighttime hours. And with that, I had better get moving back to the kitchen to get to work! – CHRIS