The Memories…

It’s been quite a memorable summer in a lot of ways!

The heat was definitely one reason, just about everyone has memories of how they found sweet relief from it. Whether it was in the pool or the pond, in a lake or a stream, most remedies involve finding some COOL water!

They say that summer days are “okay” but the nights are made for love…

Speaking of love and summer night’s, my wife and daughter both “love” all of the little house books which were originally written by Laura Ingalls Wilder.  So when we read in a local publication that the  Ozark Mountain Players were performing a play on Friday night August 6-7th  in Mansfield, Mo. called Laura’s Memories we decided to go! We drove the short distance to Mansfield early in the afternoon and took in the tour that’s given daily of the author’s home and the museum which is also on the grounds. It was interesting even for me, to see things like the actual fiddle which belonged to “Pa” and other personal family items.

It was a wonderful night of theater under the stars at the newly built outdoor amphitheater!

I very much enjoyed the overall presentation! An actress who bore a remarkable resemblance to the real Mrs.Wilder introduced each scene in which the players re-enacted stories from her books.

The “Farmer Boys” were quite entertaining!

During the intermission, playwright Terry Spyres took the time to meet and talk to my daughter. She was very nice and my daughter was thrilled to meet her!

I ask you, can there be a better way to spend a summer night then at the fair?

What memories!

I don’t really remember where I was when President Kennedy was shot, I was very young, three to be exact. But I can speak with remarkable clarity about the first time anybody ever gave me a five dollar bill. It was on the way to the fair. We were about halfway across the Glenstone viaduct when my father’s large hairy arm reached over the white leather front seat of our 1963 Buick Riviera into the back seat holding two crisp five dollar bills which he fanned apart with his thumb and index finger towards my brother and I.

I was couldn’t of been much more than six years old…

I have no doubt that I spent at least part of my windfall on a pineapple whip ice cream cone. I think they probably still sell them there although I’m sure they’re not as good now. And corndogs, the kind that they make fresh! I always appreciated the medium sized paint brush that was there to use for slathering on the mustard, “these people really know how to eat!” I thought.

Who hasn’t walked through the gauntlet of carnival game row? Can you remember the scary guy that barked you down?  The guy with an earring and numerous tattoo’s chain smoking a Camel no-filter who by the insistent tone of his gravelly voice left you no choice but to,

“Try a free throw kid, every ones a winner!”

How about a Demolition Derby?

It wouldn’t be a proper fair without some type of a grandstand show! Whether it’s a concert, a truck pull, a beauty contest, an actual stock car race or whatever. I’m partial to dirt track car races myself, the kind that put enough red clay dust into the air that you can actually taste it! Along with the horrendous noise of the un-muffled engines, the burning smell of rubber, gas and oil, it’s an experience that never fails to get my adrenalin pumping! It’s sort of a man thing, although I have seen lots of women get plenty excited rooting for their favorite driver!

I need to turn this little trip down memory lane back towards the house…I hope that I’ve reminded you of some special memories you have of summertime. I hope that I’ve provided my daughter with some good times that she’ll be able to look back on with fondness someday. I’m thankful for my memories, they’re like snapshots we keep in our hearts of the moments when we forgot about everything else except the fun we were having! I’m also thankful to God for how He continues to care for me and my family in these tough times. Who like my own father, knows my needs and who’s gifts to me aren’t based on what I deserve but instead on His great love for me!

Thanks Dad…

Remember is a place from long ago
Remember filled with everything you know
Remember when you’re sad and feelin’ down
Remember turn around

Remember life is just a memory
Remember close your eyes and you can see
Remember think of all that life can be

Remember

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Harry Nilsson-Remember

a little summer sumthin…

Last night I felt privileged as I sat outside in my lawn chair looking up at the beautiful moon. Privileged that I was so fortunate to be enjoying the cooling breezes,  the smell of the freshly cut hay that wafted along with it, and the musical accompaniment of the myriad of insects all singing their summer songs at the peak of their powers. As I  stared into the brightness of that moonlit sky all the cares and concerns that have been been my recent companions took their leave and I was left in simple awe.

Sometimes the intensity or the perfection of a moment takes us by surprise, other times it’s a result of careful planning on our part. For me this moment fell into the former category. As if a stage had been set just for me to walk out onto, to take my place on and preside over this creation. I wondered if God was also sitting in His chair watching the show from His perspective. If I, like the things that I had enjoyed , was also part of His entertainment.

Like a parent who takes pleasure in watching His children enjoy what He’s provided them with. There’s a deeply fulfilling feeling that comes from believing that you have pleased your Father. That He’s looking on and smiling,  you can feel His presence but it’s so overwhelming that you prefer to fade in and out of it. Moving back and forth between the natural and the supernatural at your will.

Tonight’s the actual full moon, If I leave now I’ll still have time to head down to the river for a cool refreshing late afternoon swim…

After that I think I’m going to stop off and pick some blackberries and satisfy my craving for freshly picked blackberry cobbler with ice cream!

But later tonight, when that big moon comes up over The Pigman Ranch

(which is just across the meadow from me)

I know where I’ll be!