Thursday, May 27, 2010

While Away - Day One

Last Thursday afternoon I left Wynne, driving through Forrest City, stopping at the office for a little while before traveling on to Iuka for four days. I have never had quite a trip as it was. My high school girlfriend and I spent four wonderful days together doing whatever we pleased, whenever we pleased, changing plans at the drop of a hat and "playing well together!"

When I left Forrest City I had heard the terrible news about the two police officers who were killed in West Memphis. Later, my cousin JoAnn emailed me that she had attended high school with the police chief, whose son was one of the men killed, and then just a few days later had to hear the sad news of Chief Paudert's son's death. She had been visiting her brother for several days and was in town at the time it happened. I left Forrest City expecting the traffic to be flowing fairly well by the time I got to West Memphis, but a 45 minute drive took about two hours. Interstate 40 passes beside the Walmart where the two suspects were later killed, and all those exits were closed. By the time I reached one that was open I had to pull off for a bathroom break. Once again on the road, traffic was at a standstill on the "Old Bridge" and I tried not to think about all that traffic sitting on that vibrating bridge.

I arrived at Brenda's at 5:30 just in time for a wonderful supper of chicken and dumplings, green bean casserole and peach cobbler. After we ate, we headed immediately to Iuka Baptist Church for the wee school graduation. Her grandson Alex was in the program, her great niece Maggie, and Paul's and my little I guess third cousin (mine by marriage) Caleb. Maggie and Caleb had caps and gowns. I got to see Caleb's parents and grandparents and another distant cousin of mine - Nancy. All the little ones' families were there and it was great to see families celebrating these cute little ones' achievements. We were pretty far away from the front so

Bren and I stayed up until we couldn't hold our eyes open any longer and made tentative plans for the next day, Friday.

David and Cindy, Bren's son and daughter-in-law waiting for the processional.

I believe this is Caleb, Paul's cousin's grandson, holding the mic. Maggie, fourth from left.

Alex in the blue, yellow and white sweater.

The music got a little too loud.

Turning their tassles. The class of 2023!

Yesterday, after one night back at home, I went to Memphis, spent the night at Amy's and was up early for an appointment at 8:45. For quite a looooong time I've been so bothered with a persistent cough and the doctor gave me prescriptions to try to see if the cycle can be broken and let my throat settle down. I hope it's not continual, he did say several weeks. Other tests are scheduled in a couple of weeks.

Amy and I went to Jason's Deli to eat, grocery shopping, and to Target; then she and I sat up until midnight looking at Iuka pictures, which includes grandparents and great grandparents on my dad's side, whom I have never really known. My cousin Edwina had called Aunt Ginny and wondered if I would like to be handed down the family history! She said no one else in the family was interested in keeping it or keeping up with it, no interest in genealogy... It so happened she called at a time I was actually in town, and I had time to visit her. Bren and I went together my first visit and I went back the morning I left as she had a couple more pictures for me. I've not spent a lot of time with her, but saw her twice on my visit and felt as if I'd known her all my life - wonderful lady. And it seems she and I are really cut from the same cloth - not only are we cousins, but our love of family history and genealogy gives us that much more in common. She's working on the history and told me to come back and soon she'll have it all together - with names on backs of pictures! So, Amy and I looked till we couldn't look any more. Even after eating two big chocolate chip cookies, I slept like a log.

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