Sunday, September 08, 2013

How I spent my vacation time

Hurray!   I am on vacation for the first time in at least 15 years.  Beth and Don are with me for the first 6 days.  They are welcome to stay longer, but Don has to go back to work on Monday.  Such activity getting settled in.  Suitcases and bags are carried in.  Each claims a bed.  Then We go off to buy groceries.      There is time to explore the beach.  To reach it, one has to walk about two blocks.  The colony is on a cliff, so the way to the beach is down hill.  The way is so steep, that someone has attached a rope so you can pull yourself up...or keep from falling as you descend.  I am fascinated by the pattern of the layers of shale as they flake off.....something like a buttonwood tree.  This will not be my access to the beach.  There is a public park about a mile down the road.  Much better.....a soft sand beach, hot dog stand, and a flat approach.  This is where I will soak up the beach experience, if it ever warms up enough.

Beth wants to visit her father's grave.  We drive from south of Buffalo to north of Buffalo, to Acacia Masonic Cemetery.    Beth cries because there are so many people buried there from our family.  They are people she has memories of or heard stories about.    There is a headstone for the Crawford and Olson family.  There is another headstone for the Sheldon, Seyse and Deth family.   While there, I decide it is time to decide where I will be buried.  I choose to be cremated and my ashes interred with my father.  I have the paper work ...will attend to this project after I return home.

We are in the Tonawanda area.  This is where Richard's cousin Judy and her mother live.  Things are not well with this family.  Both Judy and her brother Don were born with a genetic defect:  They have brittle bones.  Judy has recovered from surgery on her thumb and a metal implant on her upper arm.  She is scheduled for cataract surgery while I am here, so I will drive her.

Don is in a nursing home.  He just about died.  He was found on the kitchen floor of his house, after laying there for two days.  It is Judy's responsibility to administrate his affairs.  She pays her own bills, her mother's bills and now her brother's bills....all while recuperating from her own surgeries.   to make it worse, her mother is severely deteriorated.  Judy is there to assist the nurse.  Judy feeds her mother.  She changes her diapers.  My lovely cousin is exhausted.   Beth and Don do some grocery shopping for Judy.  Then We return to Angola.  I promise to come back.

Activity still evolves around setting up:  There are many phone calls and appoints made to see old friends.  We chat on the phone.  How lovely to hear familiar voices and talk about old times...and current events in their lives.  I will see every one of these people before I leave the area.

Don tracks down a man selling wood.  In the evening, We take the truck  to where the wood is.  Don stacks about half a truckload of wood.  The man charges us $15.   He is a talker.  he is also a man of faith.  Don and I listen to miracle after miracle that has happened to him during his lifetime.  He is an orphan, raised in Father Baker's orphanage.  Mr. Nelson is sure that Father Baker is still looking out for "his boys".   What a lovely experience, hearing this man talk. 

Evening:   a blazing bon fire and "smores"....Graham crackers, chocolate and marshmallows by the fire.  That same evening, We had arranged to talk to Melanie via Skype.   There was some trouble getting started, but We solved the problem.  All three of us saw and talked to my eldest daughter who now lives in North Carolina.    Beth feels that Melanie is depressed. She misses family.  I think she does also.  Melanie has some life situations to solve and I think she is very capable of doing so.  Melanie has a birthday October first.  I can't come to Raleigh, but We arrange to Skype again on her birthday.

Then , thee was the rainy day We slept away the afternoon.  All that work finally got to us....

It is Sunday.  Beth and Don pack up to go back to Syracuse.  Don has cleaned the grill.  Beth has washed her sheets and ran the vacuum cleaner.  It seems like they just got here.  They have to go.  Don has to fix the Jeep before Monday.  Beth's phone rings.  Her son promises a surprise when they get home.  I am guessing the kitchen is all cleaned up. (I hope).     To be continued.....





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