Friday, April 23, 2010

Journal of a Living Lady #370
Nancy White Kelly

The dogwoods are blossoming. I am coming alive again after a seemingly long, depressing gray winter. Friends are helping.

One special couple took Buddy and me to a rousing musical in Franklin to celebrate our 45th anniversary. Another friend, with Buddy’s blessing, will soon be taking me bass fishing on Lake Chatuge.

This reminds me of childhood days. My daddy would awaken me at three a.m., throw some minnows in a rusty bucket and head to Lake Tunica in Mississippi. He could have taken any of my three brothers, but he took me.

My daddy and I were always close, but our fishing adventures strengthened that bond. Catching fish was sort of irrelevant. Being with my jovial father as the sun rose at daybreak is the fond memory that remains.

My oldest brother Charles is the family fishing fanatic. His love of fishing comes in a close second to his enthusiasm for hunting. In his living room, dining room, and every other room wife number five permits hang trophies from years of fishing and hunting. Actually he has married only four women. One he married twice. The last one, a keeper for twenty years, obviously loves my brother dearly.
I asked her once how many more animals Charles would have to hang in the house before she threw him out. She said she didn’t know for sure, but that the experiment was almost complete.

Everybody loves Charles. He is a comedian on par with the late Jerry Clower. He entertains us all with exaggerated tales from his fishing and hunting escapades. And, of course, he has a huge repertoire of jokes. This is one of many.

Two fellows are out fishing on the lake. A hearse and funeral procession passed the boat on a nearby road. One of the fellows stood up and held his fishing hat over his heart as the hearse passed. His buddy commented, "Golly, Harry, that was really nice and respectful."

Harry replied, "Well after all, we were married for 40 years."

Friday, April 09, 2010

Journal of a Living Lady #369

Nancy White Kelly

Spring sprang. It’s hot already. Seems like each year we skip our highly anticipated season of spring. Now it seems a straight shot from winter to summer. I have been bagging up our winter clothes and trying to find the summer stash. Buddy thinks he put them in the attic, but they aren’t there. My creaky knees barely carried me up the ladder this year. Most likely it was my last trip ever to that space over the garage which houses a treasure trove of memories in cardboard boxes. In the hunt for the summer wardrobe, Buddy keeps finding pictures of younger, happier days.
There is a bit of sadness about growing old and knowing you aren’t going to ever have the energy or strength of days gone by. Buddy is twelve years older than I. Since the turn of the millennium, I have noticed an obvious decrease in his physical agility and endurance.

A decade ago he could work from sun up to sun down and barely break a sweat. Now he requires a nap every two or three hours. That would be okay except he insists that he can’t rest without me by his side. I don’t have time to take that many naps especially since I am not a morning person anyway. His day is half over before I am semi-conscious. By four in the afternoon I am at my peak and he is beginning his shut down mode. That would not be a problem except my Buddy insists he can’t sleep unless I am in bed beside him. What a dilemma. Do I wash clothes, do dishes and write out the bills or do I give in and go to bed with my lonely man at eight thirty?

Sometimes I lull Buddy to sleep at night and slip out of the bedroom to write, read or just do my own thing without interruption. That wouldn’t be a problem except he has this inner alarm that goes off when he can’t feel my body. Many a night he has wandered into my office sanctuary to tell me I need to come to bed and get my rest. Good grief. I’ve already had three naps since sun rise.

I still haven’t found the summer clothes. Buddy insists I gave them to either the Humane Society or Safe House for re-sale. I don’t think so, but it looks as if we will be shopping there ourselves for something to wear as the temperature edges higher each day.

The birthdays and the seasons come and go year end and year out. Once we were young and now we are old. Once we were the children, then the parents, and thereafter the grandparents. The cycle will continue after we are gone just as it has for centuries before.

Charlie just turned 30 and Noah, his youngest son, 3. Seems like only yesterday Charlie was 3 himself. Then we blinked.