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Sunday, February 17, 2013

Visiting Aunt Elsie

Aunt Elsie

The hermit does not just keep me home. The hermit keeps me from doing. Last weekend's visit with Timmy was one of the nicest I have had in a while. I came home to a clean house Sunday, thanks Angie, so I was free to just do. I finished the last of 4 drawings I started a couple of years ago. I started an oil painting that kept me painting for nearly 4 hours. I entered Edith Wharton’s world for a while when I continued my reading of Age of Desire. I took a nap so I could watch 2 hours of Downton Abbey followed by Scandal…I am addicted to both.

I went to work Monday feeling relaxed and satisfied and wondering if I might venture out during the upcoming weekend. I had no idea what might get the hermit going again. Then the phone call came from Aunt Elsie in Midlothian. Cousin Ginny is bringing Uncle Billy and Aunt Jo Ann for a visit from South Carolina, would I like to come? Few things will get me off the couch quicker than an opportunity to see my Uncle Billy. I was so grateful for the invitation. Sisters Cynthia and Marsha agreed to come along. The Sisters Three never do anything together, so this was going to be extra special. And it was. The Sisters Three made the drive in just under 2 hours. Cousin Julia Ann, her husband and 3 beautiful daughters also showed up.

To lay your eyes on your seldom seen relatives and to learn about their lives is a wonderful thing. To bask in my Uncle’s humor is a wonderful thing. To see our Aunt Elsie doing so well is a wonderful thing.

As you get older, you realize how much family history has not been captured. So, we had questions for the Aunts and Uncle. Most significant for the Sisters Three, was what we learned about our father from Uncle Billy. We learned our father was a very good man when he married our mother. Sadly, we did not know that good man who did not drink and did not abuse his family. For all these years we could not understand how our mother, a very good woman, could have chosen this man for her husband. Now we know that she had chosen a very good man who did not drink and did not abuse his family. Things later went very wrong, but our mother chose a very good man who was liked by her family. Confusion left the Sisters Three and was replaced by comfort in Aunt Elsie’s living room.

Another favorite story of mine was learning that when Marsha’s daughter visited Mom’s gravesite back in the fall, she saw a white butterfly dancing around and a black butterfly that had trouble flying at all. I then shared my experience last summer while walking Dolly in the field next to my workplace. Every day since Mom's death a white butterfly followed Dolly and I in that field. One day, the white butterfly was accompanied by the strangest black butterfly. It was very large and it had trouble flying. As I watched them, the black butterfly dove toward the ground. I walked over to the spot curious to examine this very strange looking black butterfly. It was no where to be found. It was as though it had gone into the ground. Hhhmmmmm.

Not sure what I might do next weekend, but for now I am going to see what Edith Wharton is up to.

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