Whitesburg KY
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Trip to mountains brings memories



Hello again!

Hot time in the summer just about describes it best! I think I said I wouldn’t complain no matter how hot it was, so all I am going to say without crawdading out is I am thankful for the window air as I am finding it difficult to breathe with the humidity so warm.

Christmas is just a few short months away.

I am still reliving my trip to the mountains that I call home to enjoy the Kingscreek Bluegrass Festival. There are a few things I wanted to do, I wanted to go visit with Oma Hatton, instead I called Oma and we had a good talk. I am glad she is home as this woman is a survivor.

As much as I enjoyed Friday night, it changed as I got really sick. Saturday morning before the Bluegrass Festival I felt too bad to be around anyone. Sunday was no better. However I am so glad I went to Carcassonne to the square dance.

A special thanks to Ricky Caudill for being my chauffeur. Ricky saw me ill, that was very embarrassing to me. It didn’t seem to bother him a bit.

Mike and Marcia, thanks for making me feel so welcome at your beautiful home. If I ever get back to the mountains, I will take you up on the offer of a bonfire.

Annette Akers, it was nice meeting you. I wish I had felt like talking. Maybe sometime later we can get together.

Polly Maucher, you know I wasn’t up to par when you see me leave good music and not stay till the last note is played. I hope you enjoyed the festival as I know Dean Osborne did a fine job along with the other bands. I’m really glad you made it to Michael and his wife’s baptizing. I am especially glad I called you Thursday evening as I was going to ask if you wanted to ride down to the Kingscreek festival with me.

I would have called you earlier. I didn’t know if I was going to try it or not until the last minute.

I am sorry I didn’t stay to see Dean Osborne join Country Troubadours as James Stiltner was a guest in the band also.

Southern Ohio

When I dropped Ricky off at his beautiful home on his mountain, I wanted to sit on the porch and enjoy the view from his porch, however I was too sick so I headed for the motel and never left my room until Sunday morning.

When I put some things in my car, I am glad I walked around to the back of my car. Someone broke a beer bottle within a couple of feet of my car. I picked up most of the glass, realized it was too much to pick up so I went inside the motel and asked for a broom. A young guy swept it up.

Why would someone be so malicious to do this? I don’t know if it was done to me personally, or someone out to damage something just for stupidity. I have four new tires on my car; I sure couldn’t afford four more.

I am really glad I stayed for the square dance at Carcassonne, meeting a few of the group that was from so many states to attend a program from Appalshop.

As I enjoyed the square dancing, there were two or three black students in the group. My heart filled with pride as I watched this group and also the regulars. There were no Black Live Matters, it was people enjoying dancing and companionship regardless of color of skin. I wish it could be that way every day.

Saturday, as I was enjoying the trip down home, Betty Kelly said if I could go so could she. Now I am just kidding.

Betty Kelly’s brother Franklin Bryant is in Veterans Home in Hazard. Franklin has been wanting a guitar so he can occupy himself. Betty’s son Barry Brown and Betty surprised Franklin with a guitar. Several of Betty’s sister’s met them at the Veterans Home, then had lunch. It was a day trip for Barry and Betty as she can’t leave her husband for an overnight trip, however it was day filled with love by all. Barry Brown is really good to be there when Betty and Bill need him.

It is rather ironic how so many of us still long to go back to the mountains we still call home, then there are a few that feel no ties to return. I really have no family to go back to, yet I love to go just to drive through Roxana to look upon the hillside where my little feet used to walk.

Saturday, Ricky and I stopped at Denny Amburgey’s store at Roxana. While Ricky was eating, my heart was filled with so many memories. Jr. and Bernice Adams had the store as far back as I can remember. I wonder how many people they let trade on tab, including Daddy.

When Mommy sent me to the store, I padded her bill a little as I would add two cuts of Brown Mule ‘backer and a twist of Red Ox for Grandma Daddy must not have itemized as he never said anything to me.

When Mommy got pork shoulder, I have taken out a piece to give to Grandma and closed the package back up. Grandma didn’t get anything to live on except $13 monthly. She traded several pieces of carnival glass for a can of cream to Ora Burke who owned another store in Roxana.

How many remember three cabins that were on the hill at Roxana? Grandma lived in them at one time, one had a dirt floor.

I remember Grandma making pickled corn. When it was finished pickling, oh how good it tasted. If you had a briar scratch on your hand and arm, it would sting like the devil when you reached in to get an ear of corn.

John Ison, a young reader of my column, lost his grandma about four years ago. He misses her very much; oh how I can relate to this.

Grandma has been gone for so many years, yet I long to see her just one more time.

I wonder when the prison gets built, if it will change Roxana?

Ricky drove up Tolson Creek and clear across the mountain. The drive is beautiful. As we passed the little side road to the Coots Cemetery, I wanted so bad to say let’s see how far we can drive, then let’s walk, I knew neither Ricky nor I were able so I didn’t mention it.

Maybe if God is willing I may be able to go back before winter.

I missed connection with my niece Sue Hall. I thought she was already gone with her husband Mart Hall. Sue is still having problems with her leg swelling.

I called to see if Les Wagner was talking to me, since I teased him in The Mountain Eagle. Les answered the phone. Pat said he would get even with me.

My sympathy goes out to the Wagner family as a cousin lost his wife. The sad part, the man was in the hospital and couldn’t attend his wife’s funeral. Somehow he watched it on an iPad.

This world needs more families like the Wagners.

Hello to all the Wagner, Isons and everyone connected wherever you are located.

Johnny and Ann Calihan’s daughter Sue Wagner spent a week with them. since she returned to her home she is missed very much.

I haven’t talked to Doyle and Betty Ison so I intend to call to check on them as quick as I get off this computer.

It was really good to see Bessie Shepherd and their sister Bonnie from Maryland at the Kingscreek Festival.

Mark your calendar for Letcher County/Kentucky Day picnic, Harrison Community Center, 300 George Street, Harrison, Ohio 45030. 12-? at the big shelter behind the Center. Bring a covered dish and beverage.

My heart and soul are deep in the mountains of eastern Kentucky, yet my body is here. Sitting at this computer isn’t getting anything done. My cleaning fairy is hiding in the dust bunnies. someplace.

Until next time.



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