Whitesburg KY
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Kingscreek Bluegrass Festival draws Rose Ballard



By ROSE BALLARD

Hello again everyone!

Summer is slipping away so fast. While there’s so much complaining of the hot weather, in just a few short months snow and ice will be here. I must admit I seem to breathe a little better when it is cooler.

I only have window air in my living room, then I have to keep a blanket handy as I get chilled even though it is turned on very low. I am glad I don’t have central air.

My sympathy goes out to Johnny and Ann Calihan as Johnny’s last sibling, Hattie Taylor, died Sunday. Hattie lived in Warner Robbins, Ga.

Johnny wasn’t able to make that long trip as they were having the service early in the morning.

I was very sick in December and spent Christmas in the hospital, and when I came home the first of January I had a card from Hattie. Since Hattie and Mom was friends from their youth, I am glad I got to meet her at one of the Calihan reunions.

Jr. Calihan and Hattie acted like I was family because of Mom. I love Johnny and Ann as they are really an extended family to me, even though it seems we go for a while not seeing or talking.

I read an article about some way if a man was a seventh son he was supposed to have healing powers and could cure a baby who had thrash. The same was told about someone who had never seen their dad.

Mom took me to Ann Calihan when I was a baby and my mouth was all broken out. Ann was about 15 and I was less than a year. Ann blew her breath in my mouth and cured the thrash. Well, I have a different version. Ann blew the breath of menace in me. Now that’s my story and I’m sticking to it

What was called thrash is now called thrush mouth and is a fungus and is cleared by antibiotics

I had someone ask me if I had plantain in my yard, which is what Mom & Grandma used to pick to go in their wild greens.

I answered yes. I was told to pick a leaf or two and eat it and it would help my stomach. How I wish this would help because I am not looking forward to having a simulator placed to help with my digestion.

Southern Ohio

That beats a feeding tube. I may have to get a port put in so I can get fluid, plus they won’t have to keep poking and prying to find veins.

Joanne Adams from Jeremiah made mixed pickles and chowchow. Oh how good it looked on the computer. It made me think of Mommy fixing this. If I was able to eat just a taste, I would be at her house before it was gone for winter.

Mom would wait until the tomatoes were just about gone and the cabbage was made into kraut then she would start making chowchow, and when the corn and green beans were ready she would fix several quarts. Mostly she canned green beans plus drying quite a bit for shucky beans.

I can almost taste Mom’s pickled beets.

Now here I am sipping on a bottle of Boost and writing about all these good things fresh out of a garden.

I took my car for an oil change and was told that I had an axle that needed to be replaced and was given the price of $425. I told the place I was going to take it to a friend. Meantime I took it to a garage here locally called State and Dair Auto, the same place where I had the fuel pump put in three years ago.

One of the owners whom I hadn’t met gave me a price $100 cheaper. Meantime he asked if I could drop it off as he wanted to check and make sure that was the problem. After he checked my car out, it wasn’t anything but a leak and needed to be tightened up

While I was making the appointment I mentioned had heard that one of the owners had ties to the mountains of eastern Kentucky. It was Ray Boggs from Kingscreek. His dad was Vince Boggs and his grandfather Harrison Boggs.

There’s some news I wasn’t expecting to write. Once again my heart and my feet decoded to override my brain.

Friday morning, I woke feeling a little nauseated but as the morning progressed I felt a little better. After a quick shower, I threw a few things in an overnight bag and I was out the door. I left a bag with my shoes, hairbrush, mouthwash, an extra pair of jeans, and a VCR I had intended to take with me.

When I checked into Whitesburg Motel, I was a bit tired and frazzled. I had to wear my old gym shoes, and borrow a comb until I could stop and buy a brush.

I rested for a bit, and called Ricky Caudill to see if he wanted to go to the festival. We rode past since there were no signs and neither of us knew where the park was.

We stopped at Kingscreek Market, which my sister in law Wanda Hall’s relation Marlene Cornett runs. Wanda’s daughter Crystal was there also. We talked for a few minutes then went on our way.

The bands were great. Sunrise Ridge is going to be the death of me yet as I wanted to dance so bad. I bet my chair was glad when I put it away. Jack has that old-time way of playing the banjo. His mom Bev would be so proud of him. I absolutely love and admire this young man.

It was so good to see Will Caudill and Route 7 again. Will and Alice can flat sing good harmony. Freddie is another one that can play that clawhammer banjo.

Sunrise Ridge played Friday evening then Saturday at one o’clock they did a show on Pine Mountain along with other bands, then back at Kingscreek. I didn’t make it to Pine Mountain; someone told me it was a really great show.

Dean Osborne Band picked at Kingscreek. It had been a few years since I had seen Dean’s band. As I sat and listened to them, I smiled inwardly as I met Dean and the group many years ago, Rob and Deidra Morgan, who are husband and wife. Don Morgan, who has Brown County Bluegrass Festival at Georgetown, Ohio, is Rob’s dad.

I climbed across the fence at this festival in 1999. I got tired of walking the distance to go dance, so I just put my short legs on the fence and across I went. I didn’t think anyone was noticing what I was doing, until I heard the applause, which was louder than the band got.

Ronnie Merrill is from Hamilton, Ohio. Ronnie is one of the nicest guys I’ve ever met. I have known him since the ‘90a also, back when we both had dark hair.

I did have a surprise in store as I saw what I thought was a familiar face, James Stiltner from Virginia. He was picking with a band. I met James a few years ago in Fairborn, Ohio.

I was teasing James about finding Kingscreek. James informed me that he had picked with a group at Campbell’s Branch, I think he said last year.

Friday afternoon, two politicians were campaigning, Frankie Justice for 94th Representative and Darrell Hall, candidate for Letcher Circuit Court Judge. I didn’t talk to Frankie Justice very much, however if I were living back home, I would vote for both of these as they seemed very respectable.

I must say Darrell Hall got my attention with his last name since my maiden name is Hall as most of you know.

Darrell asked if I was the one who had the accident in April. I also met Darrell’s lovely wife on Saturday.

After all the excitement on Friday, I became very ill. I wouldn’t give in and go to the hospital, I was afraid they would admit me, so I took my medicine and finally got a little better. Saturday, I wasn’t up to par and thought about not leaving the motel.

I don’t have the sense God gave a goose. Away I went again.

Saturday evening was especially special as Polly Maucher who lives a little ways from me here, was at the Kingscreek Festival with her son Donald Maucher and his wife Dawn. They live here in Harrison, Ohio not far from me. Sunday morning, Polly’s brother Michael Ison was being baptized at Cumberland so Polly’s son brought her down. Their brother Doug Ison came from Columbus, Ind. also.

Sunday morning, I walked to the lobby of the motel to get a glass of juice. I spoke to a very pretty young woman, Cassie Rosita Patterson, PHD, assistant director, Folklore Archives, who was attending something at the Appalshop, with a group for 40 or 50 other college age people. During our conversation, Cassie asked if I was down visiting family, which I replied I was down for a bluegrass festival,

I told her it was over and I was heading home, however I mentioned there was a dance Sunday evening at a little out of the way place called Carcassonne. I was floored as she said she was going.

Cassie asked me to please stay and come to dance with them. I told her I was unable to dance, but my plans changed. I called Ricky and asked if he would like to go. Ricky had to do the driving, so we went to Mike and Marcia Caudill’s then on to the Carcassonne Community Center.

When Cassie and the group came, it was a thrill to know I had met her. I also met a couple of more beautiful girls, Emily from Charlotte, N.C. and Annie Jane from Pound,Va., and several whose names I forgot to write down.

This group was from all over the states, yet got together for the Appalshop workshop. The group also attended Seedtime On The Cumberland earlier this year. Darrell Hall and his wife attended this event also.

Since I can’t eat solid foods, I carried a little bag with a bottle of Boost, a container of yogurt, plus applesauce. I am not really living the life I would like to go back to as this is existing. However I have almost give up and I decided if I am going to get sick I will find a hospital. I do feel at times my journey is about over. If it is, I won’t know anything about it.

Shawn Stamper, lead guitar player for Sunrise Ridge, had a special guest for the shows, his uncle Jimmy Bush from Middletown, Ohio.

While at Carcassonne I met an older gentleman, Bobby Sandlin from around Buckhorn Lake area. Bobby told me that he was conductor and also engineer for the railroad and rode the trains through Blackey and Roxana for over 30 years. It really was precious to spend a few minutes with Bobby.

I know you’re getting tired of reading and I am worn out. Thanks, Ricky, for driving Miss Lazy, or should I say Crazy.

I called Les and Pat Wagner and I told Pat to tell Les Na nana, guess where I am?

Thanks to Mike and Marcia for being such good friends to me.

Pam, I took your advice, no truck drivers nor someone with tattoos. I did think about putting up a roadblock as I passed a very nice looking older man on a beautiful motorcycle. I believe there was just enough room for me to fit on the back. Now quit laughing.

Until next time.



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