Monday, September 26, 2016
Monday, September 19, 2016
We do it every third Saturday. You'll see our club's name on one of those "Adopt-a-Highway" signs. Its a messy job at times, one gets rather hot and sticky whilst doing it. I noticed one of my compatriots slapping his calves, brushing away about twenty ants that were making their way up his leg.
As it turns out, this month's clean-up occurred on the same day as the nationwide coastal clean-up day, when thousands of folks took to the beaches and byways to pick up trash and litter. A fine, fine effort.
I'm proud of my club's dedication to this task--and it always feels good to be a part of it. But it also makes me very sad--and even a bit angry. When will we learn to recycle, reuse and reduce? Ladybird Johnson, way back in the sixties, emphasized keeping America beautiful. And, yes, that's an important part of efforts such as ours. But today we realize litter has a far greater impact on the environment than mere aesthetics.
Sometime before I joined the club, our monthly effort was dubbed "roadkill"--someone's slightly twisted bit of humor! (We like to laugh in my Rotary Club--it's part of what keeps me active in it!) But that moniker is also a reminder that our treatment of the roadsides and beaches can kill if we don't, pardon the pun, clean-up our act!
Let me know if you'd like to join us some Saturday. Or better yet, invite your congregation, civic group, Scout troop or bridge club to take on a section of highway themselves! And, if you see someone limping along with just one sock, let me know!
Tuesday, September 6, 2016
Earlier this summer my wife Linda and I took four of our granddaughters to a stage production of The Wizard of Oz. Following the same script as the revered 1939 movie starring Judy Garland, the cast sang and danced their way from Kansas to Oz and back again.
No doubt you'll remember that when Dorothy wants to return to Kansas near the end of the play she is instructed by Glinda, the Good Witch, to click the heels of her ruby red slippers together while chanting "There's no place like home, there's no place like home . . . ."
As I write this Linda and I are headed to our home, back to Southwest Florida, after a three week road trip. It's been a good trip, despite a few bumps along the way including some sickness, a death in the family and a rearranged itinerary. But still, we are both eager to get back to our house, our church, our friends, our cat and our Florida family. There truly is no place like home.
But this trip has reminded me how very, very personal and particular home can be. We've stayed with several friends and my mother. We've visited with our daughter Elizabeth and her family, my brother Mark and his family, and many other family members and friends. And in most instances we have been places folks considered their home. Boston and Newburyport, MA. Lincoln and David City, NE. Barbourville, KY. Andover, OH. Gloversville and Broadalbin, NY. And more. All places called by somebody we love "home".
They say "home is where the heart is"--but I wonder, for there is a bit of my heart in all these places--and other places as well. So maybe we've been home all along.
Now, if somebody could do something about the hundreds and hundreds of miles on the highway . . .
say, maybe if I just click my heels together . . . .