WHO IS VERSA WHO ISN’T

What is there about us as people? Why we must push one person down to make ourselves seem better?

We have fought wars and continue these fights some with guns and some with words.

Who has the moral authority: Republican or Democrat?

What is the right color: black or white?

Who can be a better preacher: man or woman?

Who should marry: straights or gay/lesbians?

Which is right faith: Sunni or Shi’ite ? Jew or Gentile? Protestant or Catholic? Buddhist or Hindu? Religious or Atheist?

We divide ourselves up in our side and their side, like we did when I was in a one-room school. The self-appointed captains chose their favorites first and reluctantly took the rest of us on their teams.

This past week I spent two days with a group of Reformed Church women. The first woman in the Reformed Church in America (RCA) was ordained in 1973. It took the RCA another six years to work through the church judicial business committee before women could legally become ministers. There are still places—mostly in the Midwest—which do not allow women to hold office in their churches.

Last night I watched the news of the Supreme Court. I heard declarations that gays/lesbians shouldn’t marry because a child needs a father and a mother. Wouldn’t it be better for a child to have a home where two people of the same sex love them, than in a home where a man and woman treat each other badly? Consider the child who moves back and forth daily from their dad’s and stepmother’s home to mom’s and her new boyfriend’s home? Of these three homes, which gives the child the loving stability needed to grow? Which would you choose?

Every time we categorize a person or idea as bad, we seem to elevate ourselves. Not true! It only shows our true narrow-mindedness.

Advertisements

MAY DAY

Next week is May Day. What that means now and what it meant when I was ten are very, very different.

After World War II, the formation of Communist block, and the beginning of the Cold War between Western oriented countries and the United Soviet Socialist Republic, May Day brought news of stiff marches of the Soviet Army showing off guns, tanks, and planes. The traditional May Day festivities in the United States declined.

In European countries, May Day is a holiday. Dancing around the Maypole continues in many small communities. Young girls in traditional costume wind the Maypole with colorful ribbons as they circle it, weaving over and under one another’s arms.

You also know the call of “mayday” when someone needs help

MAY DAY IN 1942

In the afternoon, Mrs. Parsons announced we’d be making baskets as our art project. She distributed outdated wallpaper sample books and let us choose a couple of pages we would like for our baskets. Then with her help and instruction, we folded square pieces of these colorful sheets into baskets and pasted a handle on them.
After school I begged my mother to let me go over to the sap house to look for wild mayflowers and violets that grew in the damp earth. It was a long walk, but Mom let me go. I went through the dairy barn, down a farm road and across the bridge that spanned the creek that ran through our farmland. I squeezed myself between the strands of the barbed wire fence, walked and ran down the path which acted as a road through the length of the long flat field to the fence at the other end.
In front of me stood the sap house, a very old building with its roof caving in. Dad said that many years earlier the farmer had made maple syrup in it. The large brick furnaces still in place could boil sap from one thousand maple trees growing on the hill beside the building. Dad used it one year, but it was too far away. Instead he opted to use the pans, but build a fire closer to our house. I digress.
I searched until I found the tiny white and pink mayflowers, purple, white violets, and yellow dog-tooth violets or trout lilies. When I had enough for two or three small bouquets, I retraced my route to our house. While Mom went to help Dad in the barn, I arranged my bouquets in my baskets.
As it grew dusk, I slipped out of the house to hang a basket on the front door. Then I knocked loudly and ran away a short distance. Mom came to the door to find the basket. She chased and caught me to give me a kiss. Dad took me to a neighbor’s house so I could surprise
another mom with a basket and collect my kiss. Meanwhile, Mom had a knock at the door from
another school friend.

Do you know other May Day traditions?

To see pictures of wild mayflowers, click on the URL below:
http://www.statesymbolsusa.org/symbol-official-item/massachusetts/state-flower/mayflower

ANT TUGBOAT

For six months my husband and I lived in the state of Gracias a Dios, Honduras, an area accessible only by air or a long winding river. Our house was basic but adequate. It had been built many years before out time there. A house keeper kept it spotless, but in the tropics houses are kept open to catch every movement of air. It the tropics cockroaches are a fact of life.

If cockroaches some way end up on their backs, they die. Ants apparently consider them food.

My journal on February 19, 2004 in Ahuas.

Tugboat ants

2/19/04ant tugboat IMG_0367

This morning a dead cockroach lay just inside the back door. Now it has disappeared. A flotilla–a large troop of ants moved it front the porch across the threshold to the spare bedroom. Apparently decided it was going in the wrong direction, they moved it back up and over the threshold. The ants were able to control the downward motion and glide it along until the floor was smooth. Getting around the threshold, they moved the whole cockroach like tugs moving a huge cruise ship in a harbor. The cockroach seemed to float across the floor. Every so often, a new fotilla of tugboats appeared to lift and carry it. The last I saw of the cockroach, it was being floated along the wall of the bathroom before it disappeared in the wall.

If the ants can’t move a cockroach, they take it apart and move it piece by piece leaving only the wings.

Another day I watched the ants move a cockroach to the shower which is enclosed by a four inch smooth box. They were able to lift it straight up that smooth surface, although it fell down a couple of times. Then the ants took it across the top and down the other side before disappearing.

Amazing cooperation and determination.

Wouldn’t the world be a better place if we people had that kind of determination and most of all, cooperation. We could move the world!

TUGBOAT ANTS

AWEsome Writers Group

For six months my husband and I lived in the state of Gracias a Dios, Honduras, an area accessible only by air or a long winding river. Our house was basic but adequate. It had been built many years before out time there. A house keeper kept it spotless, but in the tropics houses are kept open to catch every movement of air. It the tropics cockroaches are a fact of life.

ant tugboat IMG_0367My journal on February 19, 2004 in Ahuas.

Tugboat ants

2/19/04

This morning a dead cockroach lay just inside the back door. Now it has disappeared. A flotilla–a large troop of ants moved it front the porch across the threshold to the spare bedroom. Apparently decided it was going in the wrong direction, they moved it back up and over the threshold. The ants were able to control the downward motion and glide it along until the floor…

View original post 171 more words

SPOOK, THE CAT

Two months after Richard and I celebrated our first anniversary, he left the U.S. Navy to study at Cornell University. After searching for an apartment in Ithaca to no avail, we moved into a new eight-foot-wide mobile home in Interlaken, New York, where I began teaching.
The first spring in our new home, our school nurse, who knew I was fond of cats, told me she had kittens to give away. We acquired Spook, a charcoal gray tiger. He was very tiny at four weeks and probably should have stayed with his mama a bit longer.
The first day after Easter vacation, I left Spook outside. When I came home, a neighbor, whose yard backed up to ours, brought Spook to me. Her dog had chased Spook into a small ditch between our properties.. She’d dried Spook off and he was fine. Spook didn’t forget that dog.
During the rest of the school year, Lena, an elderly woman who lived in a small trailer next to us, watched Spook during the day. I was home in the summer to care for him, but Spook continued to visit his friend next door. Lena had acquired a cat without the responsibility. That was fine with us. We could go away for a few days knowing Spook would be cared for. Lena gave him his own bowl, his own spot on the sofa, and a door that opened and closed at his bidding.
By fall, Spook was almost full grown. The neighbor’s dog came across the ditch, expecting Spook to run. That didn’t happen. Spook did not run. He jumped on top of the dog with his claws out digging into the dog’s hide. The dog ran home crying.
The dog was a friendly animal and liked to come see us. After Spook let him know who was boss, the dog always carefully checked to see if Spook was in sight before crossing the ditch for a visit.
Richard and Spook had a game. Richard teased Spook to the point he would to leap and wrap all four sets of claws around Richard’s arm. One winter we had a over two feet of snow on our lawn. Richard made tunnels in the tall pile snow. Spook loved to run in and out of them. When Richard walked around our home in the thigh-high snow, Spook followed. He looked like a fish jumping out of the water as he leaped from one hole to the next.
After Richard graduated from Cornell, we moved from Interlaken and sold our mobile home to a newly married couple who would move it to a new location. Spook spent a few weeks with Lena until the home was ready. Later, we learned that when the couple introduced him to the new place, Spook immediately curled up on the bed, happy to be back in his home.

The current cat in my life
The current cat in my life