Saturday, April 18, 2009
Visiting with Neighbors - 17 March 1995
Daily Iowegian - 17 March 1995
Several kinds of birds in various locations must think that spring is on its way. Jean said they have robins in their yard and the blue herons are already nesting. These birds build nests along a scenic route called Bath Road where a river runs close to the road and many trees are growing.
I will wait for the wrens before I predict springtime.
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The other day I was listening to the radio and on the farm news was a commercial for a chemical to destroy obnoxious weeds and among them was cockle burrs. Has spraying along the roads eradicated most of them? I remember when we were kids we were always getting cockle burs and Spanish needles in our stockings. Dogs, too, would get cockle burrs and if their fur was long it was sometimes necessary to get the scissors and clip the burrs out.
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Our Y. W. Study Club is scheduled to meet the first Tuesday of the month but because of the weather, Catherine postponed the meeting until the following Friday. Tuesday was pretty overhead but the freezing rain of the night before made it treacherous for both driving and walking. Friday was a beautiful winter day and all of our members were present to celebrate our 50th club year. Reavis Beer and I were charter members and were happy and thankful that we had kept well enough to attend.
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I limped in with a throbbing gouty foot and Helen McElvain limped along on a sprained ankle. Helen and Paul, with some of their family, had been visiting the Omaha zoo. Somehow Helen had stepped on a boulder, slipped off and landed in water. The way Helen told the story she made it sound so funny that we had to laugh rather than give her the proper sympathy. Her ankle was just painful to look at and we hope she will soon be able to be up and around.
For our meeting, Catherine had all the historian books and pictures on display. It was really amusing to see ourselves as we looked 50 years ago. I will tell you one thing -- we all wore our hats, matching gloves and high heels.
When we first organized our club there were a number of clubs in the county and most of us joined the county and state federation of clubs. Each spring we had a county dinner meeting and three times, our club served as hostess. (We were all young then and had no fear of taking on that responsibility.)
One time we worked hard and fixed the gym of the Jerome School for our meeting place. You will be amused when I tell you what most of the members recalled about that meeting when we met Friday.
We remembered how lovely all the women were dressed -- hats, gloves, heels -- but our group recalled what a beautiful picture Charlotte Beck made when she came down those stairs. Although they agree her hat was blue, one person declared there was a touch of yellow someplace in the trimming. You did not know you made such an impression, did you, Charlotte?
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What I remembered most vividly about that meeting involved Charlotte, too. Our state president and another lady drove a considerable distance from their home town to attend this county meeting. I hate to admit it but right now I cannot remember Lois's last name. It is all the worse because after that meeting she wrote and we exchanged Christmas greetings and letters until her death. Anyway, Lois and the lady with her had tickets for some special program and left as soon as Lois had completed her business part of the meeting.
Quite some time later, Lois appeared at the door with a rather sheepish smile. The ladies were off to a flying start to Des Moines. Lois opened her purse for something and to her chagrin she had the wrong purse. She must have been seated next to Charlotte Beck. Their purses were identical and Lois had picked up the wrong one. She was rather disgusted with herself but was glad they had not gone any farther.
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We all had a good time reminiscing and stayed past our regular meeting time. But we had to make the most of it; we know we will never enjoy another 50th celebration.
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Recently when we ate dinner in Seymour we were seated at a table with the Wades. Like many other parents, they, too, live a considerable distance from their children. Gary lives in Vermont and Glenda lives in Washington. Gary has his doctor's degree.
I wondered how many other students I had in junior high would be addressed as "Dr." I could think of Dr. Wade, Dr. Wells, Dr. Steven Casady, Dr. Mark Wickam, Dr. Mary Morgan and I understood that Donna Niday is working toward that goal. There are other graduates but I had not had them in class. If I have forgotten any, I hope someone will remind me.
Readers are good to share information. Last week, when I mentioned the comics, I could not be sure which one suffered from the gout and made a wild guess that it might be Jiggs. A reader called to inform me it was the Captain in the comic strip "The Katzenjammer Kids."
The kids were named Hans and Fritz and were stepping on, hitting or in other ways hurting the Captain's foot that was painful with gout. I imagine I laughed when the Captain exploded but now I would not blame him if he whacked the kids so hard he could be arrested for child abuse.
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Elizabeth Sherrard came by Thursday so we could attend a Delta Kappa Gamma meeting but because she is on the review board at the care center we went there first so she could attend to some business. I was glad to go and I took advantage of the opportunity to visit Avis Medland.
She looked so pretty. Someone must have just fixed her hair as there was not a hair out of place. She had on a pretty bright top and, as always, had her happy smile. I was glad to be with her for the short visit but I was sad when I left and thought of the Avis who was always so faithful to atend the meetings of the various organizations to which I and many of her other friends were also members.
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When I was sitting in the lobby waiting for Elizabeth, a nurse came up and asked if I were Mrs. Cathcart. A former student, Sheila Bunnel, she is now married and lives with her husband Dan Squires, and four children. She graduated from Indian Hills school of nursing and then completed her education in Ottumwa to become a registered nurse. I was proud of her. Almost all teachers are pleased when a former student is considerate enough to come up and speak.
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Sunday we went to a smorgasbord at the Cincinnati Methodist Church and we had to agree that they have good cooks in their church, too. It looked as if they, too, were going to have a good attendance.
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"A gossip is a person who creates the smoke in which other people assume there is fire."
Transcribed with permission of the Daily Iowegian.