rush hour traffic
streams of weary communters
Today We Bury My Sister
Donna died of a drug overdose on November 28, two days after her 66th birthday. Her middle son, James, had her cremated within days, but it’s taken while to arrange burial of her ashes in her daughter Barbie’s grave. Barb died back in 1989, from what likely would have started as cervical cancer. A sad time for us all; Barb was just sixteen and full of life.
Being a Saturday morning, the traffic on the highway between here and Moose Jaw will probably be light. We’re to meet at the cemetery at noon to bury the urn holding Donna’s ashes, then we’ll have a gathering in remembrance, which will take the form of a family picnic in the park. I don’t expect it to be a large gathering, as she lived in her own circle of friends so a lot of her nieces and nephews hardly knew her.
Donna and I were close when we were young — as close as siblings can be when they live in different homes over 100 miles apart — but as an adult she and her family lived here in SK while we moved East and lived in Ontario and Quebec. Coming back to SK, I was only able to locate her a few times. So, sadly I’ve only seen her four or five times in the past thirty years — mainly at family funerals.
I haven’t had anything to do with her Rob & Jason, her oldest & youngest sons, since I spent a few days with Donna when Barb died. Sad when families get so estranged, but my husband and I chose a different path — lifestyle if you will — and lost contact with them. Hopefully we can get a bit more acquainted today.
The Ragtag Daily Prompt word this morning is ENVY. American poet Edgar Guest had some wise thoughts on this subject and many of his verses speak of being content, so I’m going to post a couple today. Here’s the first…
THE OTHER FELLOW
Whose luck is better far than ours? The other fellow’s. Whose road seems always lined with flowers? The other fellow’s. Who is the man who seems to get Most joy in life, with least regret, Who always seems to win his bet? The other fellow.
Who fills the place we think we’d like? The other fellow. Whom does good fortune always strike? The other fellow. Whom do we envy, day by day? Who has more time than we to play? Who is it, when we mourn, seems gay? The other fellow.
Who seems to miss the thorns we find? Th other fellow. Who seems to leave us all behind? The other fellow. Who never seems to feel the woe, The anguish and the pain we know? Who gets the best seats at the show? The other fellow.
And yet, my friend, who envies you? The other fellow. Who thinks he gathers only rue? The other fellow. Who sighs because he thinks that he Would infinitely happier be, If he could be like you or me? The other fellow.
From his book JUST FOLKS copyright 1917 by The Reilly & Britton Co.
Here’s my response to this week’s Six Sentence Story, where our prompt word is HARMONY. You may need a dictionary to enjoy my quick tale. 🙂
SPEAKING THE MOTHER TONGUE
“How is your sister making out at her new legal secretary job,” Kenzi asked her friend Pansy.
“Sad to say, the harmony in our home has been totally off since she started there,” Pansy replied. “Yesterday she said ‘You wore my best sweater again last night – and don’t try to obfuscate or prevaricate because I have credible witnesses to substantiate your culpability.’
“When I asked her what that meant in English she huffed and puffed and told me I’d need to ‘cultivate the thorough knowledge of a worthy dictionary’ if I want to get any sort of decent career.”
Three weeks later when Kenzi met her friend again, she could tell Pansy was in a much better mood.
Asked if things had improved at home, Pansy said, “Sis’s legal secretary position was terminated, so she got a job as sales clerk at Deandra’s Ladies’ Wear – and are we ever glad to have her speaking the mother tongue again!”
Almost all of us can relate to feeling this pleasure in simple things. My morning coffee, for instance: a simple pleasure for both aroma and taste. For some bloggers doing the Daily Prompt is one of life’s little pleasures, for some it may be losing themselves in a storybook. Sharing thoughts with friends who understand you, doing no-brainer tasks that bring positive results — like cleaning off the kitchen counter or organizing a closet, for example. Drawing or painting a picture.
Come to think of it, most simple pleasures are earned, aren’t they? Yesterday I noticed that my phone battery was down to 15% and I intended to plug it in. However, I forgot so I haven’t the pleasure of a working phone this morning. You don’t reap what you don’t sow, and all that. 🙂
I find simple pleasure in laying out and sewing together squares of fabric. A few ladies in our Sewing Circle spend their time cutting 7″x7″ squares and others sew these squares together to make blanket tops. At Sewing Circle some ladies sandwich these tops together with batting and a plain fabric back, and these are tied together to make blankets. I brought some squares home from Sewing on Tuesday and laid out a 11 X 13 grid — a “Trip Around the World” pattern, if you’re familiar with quilts. Yesterday I began sewing the squares together.
I used the word SOLACE in my title not only because I feel a pleasant sense of accomplishment when the end product looks nice, but it’s a comfort to focus on something so easy. I can let the world’s woes drift away and just concentrate on getting my seams straight, blocks in the right order in their rows, rows together in the right order to make the pattern come out. It also gives a perfect peaceful time to pray, to talk to my Creator, and contemplate His design for our lives.
According to Merriam-Webster, SOLACE is an upbeat word: to give someone comfort, to ease a sorrow or hurt, to bring cheer, to amuse. It comes from the Latin verb solari, meaning “to console” which is the parent of our CONSOLE. Solace describes the alleviation of grief or anxiety — something we all need at times. Have you received or given someone any SOLACE lately?
I decided to try the Six Sentence Challenge issued by GirlieOnTheEdgeat her blog. The idea is to write a story in six sentences — no more, no less. The prompt word is SCRIBE and here’s my response:
Wanting to inspire other poor kids with her own ghetto-to-CEO success story, the chief executive officer of a leading multi-national conglomerate hired a young English literature graduate to ghostwrite her memoir.
After a day of working through the CEO’s notes the grad presented a transcript to her boss for proofreading. The executive shook her head in dismay after finding eleven spelling mistakes, thirteen wrong homonyms, six dangling participles, four misplaced modifiers and seven incorrect verb tenses.
“How did you ever get through university, writing all those term papers and theses, when you don’t know basic English,” the CEO asked the ghastly scribe.
“Well, actually…I hired another student to write those for me,” the grad explained. “She was working her way through college.”