Howdy folks! Have you been enjoying the brief spring-like weather? I can say for certain that I sure have.
I am giving you fair warning as you may want to grab your favorite beverage, settle in your comfortable chair, lean back and let’s gab a spell, as I may wear you out.
I have written before that the last two weeks have been really rough on me healthwise.
As the white trees were starting to bloom in this area, I knew it was probably getting time the redbuds were beginning to show their gorgeous color in the mountains.
As time approached Carcassonne Community Square, which featured Sunrise Ridge, I realized that the calendar was mixed up. We had already had Old Time Fiddlers and my heart and soul started getting that deep longing for the mountains. Darlene Campbell said that Sunrise Ridge was playing at Campbell’s Branch. Now that was like icing on a cake.
Friday I had to work. It was such a beautiful day in this area that when I got home from work I said to my son Keith that I could hear the mountains calling me, and I wanted to go so bad. Instead of getting ready at that moment I hem and hawed around, making excuses, then all of a sudden I decided I was going with more encouraging from Keith.
I left my house at 3 p.m. A few minutes before 7 p.m. I was checking in at Whitesburg Motel, and about 7:30 I was pulling into Campbell’s Branch parking lot.
No one knew I was going from this end except Keith, and no one knew I was coming on that end of my little world. Lucky for me that I had almost a full tank of gas in my car.
Now when I was traveling so much back and forth I kept essentials in my suitcase. I haven’t been anywhere since October, in fact I never even took enough time to grab my suitcase. I threw two changes of clothes and a brush and hairspray in a large bag, and in a small bag put in yogurt and water.
When I got partway to the mountains I realized what I had forgotten to get, well let’s say I was at Dollar General Saturday buying some much needed necessary things.
I called Whitesburg Motel as I was on my way to get a reservation. I knew I was probably too late and couldn’t get my usual room, so I told Misty to put me on the ground floor, as I didn’t want to climb the stairs. Actually I would have slept in my car I was so glad to be going.
When I arrived at Whitesburg Motel, the owner James was working, and as it turned out the room that I always stay in was available. Thanks, James and Cody, for making my stay comfortable.
Sunrise Ridge had been playing for about half and hour, so I missed some good music. I did dance a couple of times, but my legs are very weak and I am so afraid of falling that I can’t relax and dance like I want to. I would have just been content to sit and listen.
I received hugs from several people, and Darlene Campbell hugged me so tight as she had read a post that I had written about how I wanted to head for the mountains.
Carl Boggs introduced me to Don Miller from Blackey who knew Dad and all the family. Barbara enjoys my column in The Mountain Eagle each week.
I am sorry I didn’t mix much and only danced a couple of times. I was so tired I really had no business of going.
May 5 there will be a benefit for Campbell’s Branch Community Center. Please support this wonderful place that so many are trying to keep open. I will have more on that in next week’s column.
Saturday morning, I was up about 3 a.m., very sick, so I turned the television on and tried to get relief. About 9 a.m. I was headed to Dollar General. My blood sugar took a plunge and I knew I wasn’t able to go anywhere, so I called my niece Sue Hall as we had made plans.
She was in a mess and I was too sick, so plans were postponed. I laid on the bed for a few minutes, and two hours later the ringing of the telephone woke me.
I finally got myself together and left the room to do a few errands. I went to Golden Apple to see if they had half runner green beans, which they did, along with peas, and I bought two green tomatoes to fix for Keith.
I went to Letcher Manor to visit Linda Hall. It breaks my heart to see that she isn’t able to get out of bed as Linda is an avid bluegrass music lover like me. I always enjoyed her company when we would get together at different places.
I ducked in to see Shirley June Whitaker, whom I hadn’t seen since I was about 10 or 11 years old. Shirley is a retired schoolteacher and again this breaks my heart, as no matter what our status in life is, no matter what we accomplish or accumulate in our life, when we lose our health, we have lost everything.
Saturday, I met Shawn Stamper and Flo at Blackey to follow them to Carcassonne Community Center as it has been some time since I had been there. For some reason this road bothers me when I am by myself.
Thanks, Shawn, for all your help as I followed them back off the hill.
The square dance was wonderful as there was a nice crowd and plenty of dancers, and thanks, Mike Caudill, for dancing with me.
Mike Watts, it was good to see you and Donna again. When I get back to Carcassonne you owe me a dance if I ever get feeling good enough as you were kept busy all evening.
It was so good to be at Carcassonne Community Center. Except for dancing with Mike Caudill one dance, I sat and listened to the music. My stomach was hurting so bad, but I couldn’t bring myself to get up and go back to the motel.
Marcia and I did dance one fast dance together, but I am so afraid of falling as I lose my balance very easy.
Carcassonne Community Center will host a group of students from Denmark, along with chaperones. I think Marcia said about 62 would be in the group. I am not positive of the number.
The group will be staying at Pine Mountain Settlement School, and will be touring other places in Kentucky and I am sure there will be other places on their agenda.
Mike and Marcia Caudill do a wonderful job at the community center, and there are such a good group of volunteers. I am so glad there are places like Campbell’s Branch to go to for a good time, and not worry about drinking, nor someone sneaking outside selling marijuana.
Sunday as I checked out of Whitesburg Motel, my niece Sue Hall picked me up and we went on an adventure that really almost turned into a nightmare. Sue and I started to go to the Coots Cemetery on Big Branch to visit Mom’s, Dad’s, Wallace Lee’s, Loretta’s, and Rich’s graves.
When Sue turned up the little path, there was a bad spot, so I asked Sue if she thought we should just turn around, but she said, no, she would be alright. Well the second place was a little worse but we made it through and got almost to the top, and the road had completely washed over the mountainside.
Here we are with no place to turn around, so Sue had to back about a quarter of a mile before she finally found a small spot she could turn the car around in.
Sue can back a semi up by using her mirrors, and all I can say I would probably be there today if that was me driving. Of course you have no cell phone service in that area. I hope something can be done to the road before Memorial Day.
When we got back to Roxana, Sue decided to go up Kingscreek. It was nice just to look around and enjoy the scenery and re-live memories. Alma Whitaker’s house is still as beautiful as when she was alive.
Finally Sue made a right turn and recognized where she was going, as I asked if that was Boggs Holler. Sue was heading for Ingram’s Creek as Wanda Hall still lives there.
Wanda wasn’t home so we didn’t stop. All wasn’t wasted as I could hear the sound of roosters crowing close to the road, plus I saw the beautiful sight of three dogwood trees starting to show their beautiful white flowers along the road. The redbud trees are so pretty everywhere you look. Thanks, Sue, for the trip and spending time with me.
As I was on my way home it rained in some places, not a hard, pouring rain. There wasn’t much traffic and again the scenery was still a delight.
I called Keith to tell him not to worry as I was getting a late start to head home. It was 3 p.m. when I left Isom as I stopped to get gas. I arrived back in my driveway at 6:15 p.m. as I drove straight through.
When I came into the house, I told Keith that I had T.B. and he asked what? So I told him I had a tired butt and tired bones. Yes, he laughed.
My heart is so much lighter as God gave me the strength one more time to be able to go to the mountains to see the beautiful foliage as He paints the world for all to see. It is beautiful in this area with the trees that are snow white, and the new green as a backdrop, but there’s nothing that can compare to the feeling I get as I travel to the mountains of eastern Kentucky in the spring and the fall.
When I got home Keith had a surprise for me. Some time ago Zach Harper, who had mowed my grass for me, had given me a table and it was in my garage as I hadn’t taken the time to get anyone to bring it in for me. Well, it was in my kitchen and in place with my tablecloth on it.
Keith had taken the top off of the table as it is oak and very heavy. Did I say I love that son of mine?
Well, I have a busy day ahead of me, so I better get dressed and face it.
Until next time, Rose Ballard, 9110 Lawrenceburg Road, Harrison, Ohio 45030, email Bluegrassmama4@aol.com.