June 9, 2008

Plants, Faulkner, Jackson, Dora, Federer, and Nadal

There is only two days left of work before our crew leaves this cicada infested city for Florida. Most of our time is devoted to planning what to take, packing our luggage, and readying the house for ten days of vacancy. Last night I put all our flower pots in one place on the deck to make it easier for Julia to water. They looked like a silent, two tiered choir. I have an irrational sad feeling for the flowers and plants, almost like they’re looking back at me, not wanting me to leave them in all this heat. The choir is preaching to me. I’ll mow the lawn today for the last time before we leave, again with Bill’s mower. I still haven’t heard back from Lyndon Mower Repair. I suspect they may be holding my mower hostage and I’ll receive a note with letters and words cut from magazines, asking for money or they’ll remove the starter, and that’s just for starters.

I bought William Faulkner’s “Light In August” a week ago to read on vacation and I’ve already read a third of it. I read it once waaay back in Mrs. Baker’s ninth grade English class. I didn’t understand it much back then but I’m really into it now. Mrs. Baker was an ambitious teacher and, looking back, I appreciate her efforts. Faulkner was a genius at creating a vivid sense of time, place, and character in few words. In just over a page and a half he writes about a young boy going into town with his father from the farm. Faulkner describes the town, its inhabitants, and a restaurant where they eat dinner. Faulkner makes you feel like you’re in the young boy’s shoes, making that emotional connection to the reader. What’s more amazing is that Faulkner was a heavy drinker and most likely wrote while hammered. Most of his important works were about the tragic results of the south’s practice of slavery and southern guilt. I think I’ll read something lighter after this book….maybe I’ll borrow one of Hailee’s “Dora the Explorer” books.

While at the pool yesterday Tricia, Scott, and His Serene Highness, the Jackson Man came by to visit. That Jackson is one beautiful boy. He’s changing so fast and has a dazzling smile that reminds me so much of Tricia’s smile when she was a baby. I’ll never forget the first time Tricia smiled at me. Tricia introduced me to Unclehood and now Jackson (and Duncan) introduced me to Grand-Unclehood (or is it Great-Unclehood?) I gave Jackson a smile and a wink from Janet.

I’m whipping my tennis game back into shape thanks to Amber Miller, a fellow church member who used to play tennis for Transylvania University. I’m surprised at how mobile I am with my new artificial toe joint. We’ve played twice and plan on playing more. Amber’s about 6 months pregnant and she moves pretty well too. Once we start playing matches she’ll probably beat me like a drum. Speaking of taking a beating, Roger Federer got beat in straight sets by Raphael Nadal in the French Open final Sunday. Federer might be ranked number one in the world but Nadal is ferocious on clay and this makes his fourth win in a row at the French Open. It had to be a tough loss for Federer. You can look for Federer to be the number one seed at Wimbledon this year though. Federer is a machine on hard court and grass. His playing style reminds me of Bjorn Borg back in the 70’s & 80’s when the only way to beat him was to bring a gun to the court.

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