Thursday, December 31, 2020
Friday, December 25, 2020
The evening of the 21st of December, just after sundown, we drove up a tractor rutted hillside and parked our trucks on the top of a rise. The field sloped downward from there and the tree line was well below the southwest sky. Our neighbors popped up 4 lawn chairs and we sat, looking.
A hint of a orange sun set completed, still shown through the bottom edge of the horizon. And we looked. We talked. My wife, though, was silent. I tried to engage her with some conversation (several times) but she stayed silent. And we watched.
A crescent moon shown brightly over head but not a star in the sky appeared. We checked the time. According to what we had read, that moment had arrived and we all looked up at the sky together. Nothing.
I blinked, looked again and there it was. A noticeable star. The only star. Then appearing to be two stars. Close, noticeable to the naked eye. And we watched on this warm East Texas evening as the Star of Bethlehem was again born for us to witness. In an instant, a celestial switch was thrown from the sun to light those two close planets.
We talked of that moment. Thanked our neighbors, from our hearts, for sharing their hill and this once in a life time moment with us. We sat, we watched.
After a half hour the two planets seemed brighter. The naked eye saw more of a single light than two. Without fanfare or notice five spikes of light appeared. I asked the others if they saw what I was seeing and they did. I blinked, looked away, looked back again and again. I looked at some of the other night stars starting to appear in the sky and none shown so bright and absolutely no other star was accompanied by five noticeable streaks of light emanating from their centers. And I watched. I must have done this several dozen times. I was seeing what I was seeing.
I compared the star lit sky to this Star of Bethlehem. There were none other that shown so bright or painted a noticeable singe point in the evening sky.
It was personal for me, my wife and our neighbors. We were fortunate for the hill, the horizon and the blackblue sky. It makes no difference to any of us (I think) beyond what we saw that night. All of that became locked inside the 4 of us and most likely a unique personal event.
I silently prayed. For guidance. For my myself, my wife, my family, friends my country. For good health and for strength. I prayed for the goodness of man to prevail. And I thanked God for his presence in my life. Under the star of Bethlehem, was a wonderful moment to offer a prayer.
My wife has held this moment very close to her.
Christmas Day Eve now. Gonna post and then take a few days off.
I realized yesterday, when a gal at the local market offered simple advice at check out. I told her I as having trouble with my homemade bread not rising and she said to check the date on the yeast. Offering bread making tips.
She noted that I had also visited the discount meat corner. Yes, I had and found rib eye steaks at half price. A large circle of bread rolls followed as I feared I was going to encounter a homemade bread failure for the holiday.
Then she asked if I was a senior citizen. I smiled said yes and to myself said "bless your heart." She said I saved $4.00 which meant that one of those rib eyes was damn near free.
"Have a blessed day and a Merry Christmas" rolled off her tongue as she handed me my receipt. Accompanied by the East Texas accent put an instant lump in my throat. From the heart.
In that moment she taught me how important everyday human contact is. The simplicity of that moment, genuine conversation/interaction/warmth/niceness to others.
These days and times are finding people that are giving up God given freedom, locking themselves in their homes and avoiding most all personal human contact. They are killing themselves softly. I am trying to understand.
Thank you for the visit.
Have a blessed day and a Very Merry Christmas.
Saturday, December 19, 2020
From a good friend who took his boat out on the Miami River last night. He said it was beautiful but for the idiots and drunks out boating. I responded saying that idiots and drunks out boating on the Miami River last night just might be a good sign given the times we live in. Regardless, beautiful pics of parts of Miami at night taken from the river.
Sunday, December 13, 2020
Standing up against the wall in a neighbors shop were two trees like the one above. Their grandson made them awhile back in shop class. Yep, shop class. Actually, an agricultural course. Apparently some wood working involved too. My wife was drawn to them immediately. I was too, but from a design point of view. How simple and functional for yard decoration this time of year. No plastic nor electoral help. A little paint with paper plate cut outs and spray cans of paint. Glitter of course!
I tightened the star on the top, my wife brightened up a few of the colors and to the front yard it went. Leaned up against a tree and fastened with wire ties. Christmas decoration for the season. I take time to look at it daily as we come and go. It is quite often the simple things in life that bring some joy and happiness.
No ranting. I am at my roads' end giving advice to myself let alone offering to others. I ask myself constantly now, what else can we be doing in the few days left this year and before the 20th of January. Yep, we can still get more of this and more of that. Food available, even toilet paper to the top of the racks. No ammo. Have talked of that. We are, for all practical purposes out of time. Even asking for more time is wasteful energy. God knows we all have had plenty of time for the past few years. If we have not done it by now, more time is not an answer. Hope is not a plan.
My wife looked at me this morning and said that we have lived long enough to witness the end. Witness being the key word.
There appears to be real fear for gatherings or being in close proximity. I can feel it in the grocery stores now. People move out of the way, hold back within their 6' circle of perceived safety. Not all, but with some it is noticeable. People are polite.
It has to be taking a toll, to avoid and be avoided in the social and public places. Conversations nearly impossible due to muffled voices. To be housebound for months on end has also got to be taking a toll.
Add to this the myriad of coming threats of against our freedoms and ways of life from newly elected governing class. I cannot find any happy news these days. None!
Lemon trees appear happy though in the early morning dampness. Flowers healthy. I am putting off harvesting the last 4 lemons until I have to. They have become good friends at yard's end. They help me look forward to their next crop, next season, next year. Springtime. Growing season.
Winter weather this week has been bright sun and temperatures in the mid seventies. Then cool/cold, a few hours of soaking rain and this morning in the thirties with a high of 48 forecasted.
My better half has the kitchen prepped for more Christmas cookies.
Some ready to be mailed out and delivered. As in years past, she restricts my access. I have had only three so far and there is a promise for more coming for home eats this coming week. Today's bake comes covered in powdered sugar.
And the beat goes on. Would you put your child through this?
For the children you know. Keep your eyes on more of these stories.
Who is John Galt?
Another week. Appreciate your visit.
Tuesday, December 8, 2020
Oil and butter melted in the pan. Salt and pepper then floured. Fried medium heat for minute and a half on each side. Heaven on earth!!