Whitesburg KY

Winds cause damage

Southern Ohio

Hello everyone!

It is hard to believe that January is half gone already. At least we haven’t seen a lot of bad weather. What am I saying? Winter has actually just started. Friday and Saturday the Ohio Valley area was predicted for severe weather, lots of rain on Friday night then winds could reach up to 60 miles per hour.

Saturday morning was a beautiful morning. I sat for a few minutes on the front porch then Vicki Power and I decided to take a little venture to Western Hills area, as I found someplace that possibly had men’s Wrangler jeans.

We had plans Saturday night to see Marvin Davis and Trina Emig perform about 40 miles away. Well, we changed our minds, as I don’t like to drive in the rain at night.

When I got home I had a rude awakening, as the winds had really played havoc. There were tree branches everywhere in my yard. When I walked onto the front porch, the carpet, which has been glued down for a couple of years and has withstood a lot of strong winds, was folded back on the porch.

I parked my car on the back pad, and decided to take a shortcut through my son Keith’s bedroom since he wasn’t home. I couldn’t get up the steps as my umbrella was, along with the table, stand and chairs, on its side. I am too little to lift it up, so I called Keith and told him what he was facing in case it was late at night when he came home.

Keith had been working on one of his truck, and he covered it up with heavy duty plastic and anchored it down. The winds whipped it off and folded it up on the ground. At least our house was intact, as there’s a huge maple tree in the front yard that worries me. There were reports of trees down on Jamison Road that goes up the hill across from me.

Now we are having reports of possibly snow coming our way.

My sympathy goes out to all my first cousins on my dad’s side and their families in the loss of a sister, Carmelita Lewis Casteel, who resided in Harlan. I hadn’t seen Carmie since she was very young. As a matter of fact, Carmie and my son Keith are the same age.

Gracie Lewis Widner lives in New Tazwell, Tenn. Vickie Power and I went to see Gracie sometime last year. Gracie has pancreatic cancer, is stage 4 and can’t take anymore chemo. Gracie is exactly one year older than me.

Dad’s sister Berta Lewis would bring Gracie and her sister Lorene Lewis Deal to Grandma Rosa Hall, who lived just a hop and jump from Daddy and Mommy. I spent most of my time with Grandma, so I would stay all night so I could play with Gracie and Lorene.

As I left home so early I lost touch with my family. Grandma had to go live with Aunt Berta and her family, and Gracie was married and had a family of her own. Something happened and Gracie had Grandma come to live with her and her husband George and family.

I would go visit Grandma, and Gracie and her whole family was absolutely wonderful to Grandma, who lived with them until she passed away.

I thought about trying to go to Harlan for Carmie’s funeral, but I was afraid to try to make the trip.

Saturday afternoon, a benefit was held at Campbell’s Branch Community Center for Kenny and Wanda Whitehead as they both were injured severely in a car accident about a month ago. There was a great turnout for this event by the posts on the computer. The music was really good, as big Will Caudill and Fred Campbell sure had my feet tapping in my living room. It was really good to see Libby Smith pick the mandolin with the group.

Alice and Darlene Campbell do a good harmonizing with anyone. Alice couldn’t hardly keep from dancing as she sang.

Fred and T. Campbell keep tempting me to head to the mountains of eastern Kentucky regardless of health issues, weather, etc. I have to listen to my nimble brain, not let my heart and feet take over and do the thinking for me

A benefit for the Whiteheads will take place at the Blackey Community Center on January 25 from 5 to 10 p.m. Kenny Whitehead has improved enough to go home, with a long way for recovery. Wanda is still in Pikeville Hospital and needs lots of prayers as she received more extensive injuries. Please keep the family in your prayers.

I took my car to get an oil change. It is a good thing that I did. When I was in the mountains in November I hit a curb, actually I wondered if I had knocked the front end out of alignment when I hit it.

So the oil change turned out to be rather expensive, as I came out without the Christmas money that I went into the business with. Keith gave me $200 for Christmas, and I came out with five dollars left.

So merry Christmas to me, at least I caught it in time, as my tires were starting to wear on the edge.

Keith can’t change the oil as I have to take it to a dealer to keep the warranty good. This car only has a three-year warranty, or 36,000 miles, and the way I drive the miles will be up before three years.

I’m thinking about going on a road trip sometime this summer, without a destination in mind, for a couple of weeks.

I am looking forward to March, hoping the weather is good, Carcassonne Community Center will be holding its square dance the second weekend of March.

Jack Adams, who is the banjo picker for Sunrise Ridge, also picks for Larry Efaw & Bluegrass Mountaineers, which is based up north in Ohio. Saturday, Larry Efaw & Bluegrass Mountaineers performed at Maumee Bay Lodge at Lake Erie. Larry sent me an invitation, but with the weather prediction and other things I declined to try the trip.

Jack texted me between shows and afterwards. He is really thrilled to be picking with Larry & the Band. Oh how I want to be able to go hear and see him with this band, as I have known Larry for 21 years.

For someone who can’t pick a lick, I am proud to say I have met so many wonderful musicians, along with lots people down through my time of being involved in music — just the plain fact of loving bluegrass music.

Johnny and Ann Calihan along with their families are still needing prayers for strength as they are having some health issues, along with dealing with grief.

Thanks to everyone for the cards that you’ve sent to Johnny and Ann. They are very much appreciated as several have reached out to the Calihan family as you’ve walked in their shoes.

Somehow I haven’t been in touch with Les and Pat Wagner. I hope they are doing alright.

Mike and Marcia Caudill, thank you so much. I am sorry I haven’t called you. I got a new phone and it hasn’t been working right. I get echoes when I am talking, so I keep having to shut the phone off and call back or have someone call me.

I am going tomorrow to get a different phone. Oh, while I was going through some papers, your Christmas card, which I thought, I had mailed before Christmas is still here

Nina Craft, I am looking forward to talking to you as you have peaked my curiosity. Please give me a call.

Thanks for your wonderful comments saying how much you enjoy my column. I can’t believe I have been writing this column for almost 17 years. It all started by writing a letter to the editor of The Mountain Eagle newspaper, then escaladed to a column, simply because of people wanting me to keep writing.

Again I will repeat, I have met so many wonderful people because of The Mountain Eagle.

Just a remainder, Campbell’s Branch Community Center is open each Friday night with different bands, Sunrise Ridge performs the second Friday. Go hungry as food is available.

Carcassonne Community Center is still having events.

Keep in mind the benefit for Kenny and Wanda Whitehead Jan. 25, at the Blackey Community Center. Different bands will be performing, along with Will Caudill & Rt. 7.

Well I have a busy day ahead, plus my sugar is dropping, I am eating peanut butter and crackers, and drinking orange juice as I am trying to write this column. I am starting to have trouble concentrating.

Until next time.

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