Archive for the ‘My Rants’ Category

My great Grandmother on her trek from Kentucky left a piano on the Prairie for the “WyldInjuns to learn to play. ” chucked it out of the back of the Conestoga wagon herself, so they say. I understand…

Where to start over?

I bemoan the loss of things for them and friends who are in need of help.  My mom was right I have a home and more crap than I need. There were times in the past few months when I felt like torching the piles of boxes, bedspreads and plastic table ware I’d collected over the years. Other times when I cried over something I had foisted on a local charity shop or worse on friends to lug around.

OMG! What are you whinin’ about, It’s not like you lost everything in a fire! My mother chastised me last week about sniveling over lost items that I had to dump on my move to Boston.  Then I got the Call from Mari, the friend we had saddled with our abundance and Pack-rat-cquetering had collected over the years. Everything we had given to friends back in January went up in flames last Saturday afternoon.

Thirty homes destroyed in five arson set prairie fires in three counties. My friends lost everything they owned. Mari, Muriel and Seasonal Dave, affectionately known to everyone as Father Christmas, or just Santa to most of the children in Sandia, Texas and all parts along the way, during the holidays and Sam the Sunny View Mall Photo Easter Bunny. Which is who Dave was being when the call to rush back home and help fight the fire came.

The fires had hop scotched through the small ranch called Tara Verdandi burning almost to the house stopping at the edge of the small dog run a few feet behind Muriel’s house. Mari is retired and rented an old  house trailer that had been use while they built the ranch house.  Dave and Muriel’s house escaped because they used the two wells, until both pumps were destroyed in the blaze, to water the house and fight back the fire with garden hoses and a wet broom. Mari’s trailer stands down by the barn next to the orchard or what is left of it. They heard falling trees for three days after the volunteer fireman left, most of the cops of trees are charcoal cinders that will need to be felled before the next big wind knocks them down or they fall on wanderers in the woods.
I just spoke with Mari, she was feeling bad about not saving the old Gateway laptop I gave her during the move along with a few boxes of books. 

I’m just glad she is alive, “I tried to run in and save the laptop and some stuff.” She said, But Dave held her back because smoke was beginning to seep out of the windows at the front of the trailer. She was able to save some favorite cutlery, sans melted handles. Like the wiring and tires on the ruined truck parked out front of her home that  she borrowed from  Dave and Muriel to make the half a mile drive to the edge of the property to fetch the mail or drive the thirty miles to the Stop n’ Go for essentials between the trips in to town for groceries.

I said that Muriel’s wood frame ranch house is okay, it did not burn however, everything is destroyed by smoke ash and cinders. The Barn has only a few posts standing, both riding mowers, essential to farm work gone, both wells gone, along with the ranch truck. Not counting diaries, school photos and a life time collection of brick-a-brack and hundreds of other rituals of daily life. Gone. Just Gone, in ten minutes time and a Prairie-fire-dragons’ kiss, just like that.
Mari is waiting for the neighbors to help her drag the collapsed roof of her trailer aside to see what else the fire gods left for her other than a melted heap of laptop and a raku bowl I had given her during the move.

Dave and Mari are retired Muriel still works for the school district in Sandia.
Here is a link to the photos of their place. Photobucket(you can see the bed frame is all that is left of Mari’s house.)


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Going home to a past I never knew and adjusting to the uncertain future before me.

My father-in-law  was born almost 80 years ago in a small village in Northampton, son of the Manor’s Bull minder in a thatched house near the main road.  Educated in a Free school built in 1624 AD.  Father of a son and daughter.  I took these photos for him.

Southern England holds a fascination for me. I feel at home among the English.  I like being exotic. I noticed people stopping on conversations edge to listen to my southern drawl and smile. Here in New England, my new home the contrast is stark and viscous. I had hoped that things would go as  easy  here than in Texas.  It’s really hard to fit in. Rather than feeling exotic, I feel like an interloper. Customer service in the north is an unheard of concept among locals in the college town we are in. I’ve even had discussions with locals about their distaste for the college and students, complaints about the well maintained beautiful brick structures and classic architecture.  Confusingly, the income and existence of the town depend on the interaction provided by the students and faculty.

But thoughts are things! I must adjust and learn to deal with the negativity that I perceive, learn the nuances of communication and thrive in this foreign place that the gods have brought me to.

I have uploaded photos from the Village of Weekley that I took last week in the UK  


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Puddles were everything to me as a child, magical places that existed and then were gone. I can still see my face peering over the edge of a puddle and meeting myself for the first time. “hey that’s me in that reflection” I remember thinking, or whatever words a small barely verbal child would think. I got the first good look at myself. Now nearing 60, I’d like to spend more time on rainy days reflecting on my life and making some sense of it all. If I can.

It’s my own journey,  I could always make time for a little company.

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