Tuesday, September 02, 2014

Snapshots of Our Summer

Sometimes I feel like my Main Role in Life is to get other people ready to go places.

Emily left this morning to visit Amy in Thailand, which required my expertise in deciding which 44.5 lbs. of things for other people should get packed in, in addition to Emily's sparse 5.5 pounds or so of stuff for herself.

You've done this, no doubt--stuffing, zipping, stepping on the scales, hoisting the suitcase.  Five pounds over!  Unzip, shuffle, debate, check the list, make decisions, repack.  Half a pound under!

And so on.

Last week I packed up great quantities of things and sent the Wilton Smucker Warehouse guys down the river.  They put in on the McKenzie at Armitage Park.

Eric the bag tagger, Keith the manager, Austin the bagger, Paul the boss, Steven and Ben the baggers.

"Didn't you want to go along?" someone asked me.

I said, "Well, yes. Lovely river, beautiful evening, good-looking company--that was all tempting. But sitting in the sun not talking while they fish? Sleeping on the ground? Making food for them all? Ashes and spiders on soggy potato chips? Not so much."

This conversation involved that new fly-fishing rod, I think.

They got out at Peoria.  Things look pretty tidy here only because almost everything was loaded up already.  And yes, Ben was soaking wet.  He and Steven had both accidentally dumped their kayaks shortly before.
 *     *     *
Kristi Smucker of Kristiann Photography came by one day in July and took Author Shots of me.  It turned out to be the Funnest Shoot Ever and that is saying a lot, because I don't enjoy posing for pictures.

Kristi, if you're wondering, is Paul's cousin Brian(and Twila)'s daughter.  Her sister Hannah helped corral the props, as did Jenny.

I was very happy with the results.

My daughters outfitted me for the occasion and even coached me through a costume change.
This picture speaks of timing, imagination, and luck.  Kristi took my ideas and went to amazing place with them.  The calves were quite cooperative and No, there was no grain in the teacup.
This shot makes me remember, and laugh.  Such action and efforts behind the scenes.
 *     *     *
 My column was due today and as always I was short of ideas.  Jenny insisted I should write about zucchini.  Well, zucchini being zucchini, it's pretty tough to come up with 1200 words about it unless you include recipes, which I didn't feel led to do.

So I began casting in my mind for some sort of contrived correlation between zucchini and something else in my life, which is how too many of my columns come to be.

Hmmm.  Zucchini doesn't have much flavor.  It serves as a solid reliable filler in other foods, such as soups and cake and stuff, and takes on the flavor around it.  A bit boring, but serves a good purpose.

Like some people!  Hey, there was my analogy!  So who would fit that description?

"So you're saying it's like people who come to church but just sit there and fill the pews and don’t do anything?" Emily said.

I said, "Aack!  It was supposed to be a POSITIVE thing!"

I wrote about taking my dad to the coast instead.

Emily wrote about the day here, but she failed to mention that detail about the quart jar of iced tea breaking in the cooler right before lunch.

*     *     *
On Sunday evening we went up to Washburne Heights and had a great view of the valley.  Of course I asked Dad if he felt like Moses and he said no.  But that place always makes me think of, "Til from Mt. Pisgah's lofty height, I view my home and take my flight," so I've been humming it ever since.

Dad, Ben, and Paul a.k.a Moses, Joshua, and Aaron
*     *     *
Today was the first day of school, which means the end of summer in my mind, even though the sun is shining and the zucchini are still out there growing fatter by the day.

Jenny is a junior.  Paul is the principal.

And look at who DROVE!

Quote of the Day:
Grandpa: What kind of animal?  Well, I think I'd be a cow.  A cow is a useful animal.  They give milk, and then butter and cheese.  You can eat the meat.  And you can make leather with the hide.

[This is what Jenny and her grandpa have in common: you never know what they'll say next.]


  1. Love the photo shoot pictures you got! Perfect.

  2. Waiting for the link to the column!

  3. Love the pictures, especially the one with the calf :)