Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Missing but Active

I've been MIA again, but honestly, I have been active! Monday was the Veterans Day parade and ceremonies in town. For the first time ever, Larry decided to participate. Like many Vietnam vets, he has bad memories of his homecoming to the States and has pretty much avoided any involvement in activities centered on that war. But this time, he changed his mind and I am glad he did.

The parade and cermonies honored all veterans but there was more focus on Vietnam vets than in the past, and many of them were present--74, I believe, is what Larry told me. These guys, who were for the most part in their late teens and early 20's at the time they were sent to Vietnam, are now graying and showing the passage of years. But if all of them enjoyed the day as much as Larry did, then it was a mighty good time--with the usual male humor about passing gas, etc. Men--do they ever grow up? I hope not!

As I tried to get a photo of Larry, I called out, "Hey old man!" All of the guys in the truck turned to look.

I tried to stay out of the way so that Larry could enjoy just visiting with the other vets and getting to know some of them. This was his time, his kind, and I was not part of it. I wasn't married to him until long after the war, and while the wife of any Vietnam vet is going to have to deal with a lot of issues, I was not involved at the time of the war, and in truth was much opposed to it. Odd to think that while he was over there fighting in the jungles and paddies of southeast Asia, I was having my first 4 sons, listening to war news on the radio and thinking what a terrible thing it was and how fortunate that my husband (my first husband, that is) was in the Reserves and did not have to go. (Back then, Reservists stayed stateside, or at least most of them did). When I met Larry, I really had no idea what it might be like to be married to a veteran of that war. Now I know--it can be difficult, and sometimes I struggle to understand where he's coming from. But I would not change him, or me. We muddle along the best we know how.

So that was Monday. We did do a little business--we visited an antique mall in South Charleston and I checked into possibly opening a booth there. No openings right now, but maybe later. We hit a few thrift stores and headed home by dinnertime. It was a good day all around.

Yesterday I got to work on inventory-a nice word for the mess in my office, and spilling out into other rooms of the house! I priced a lot of things, got the tote of Christmas things out and headed to Ravenswood to add Christmas to my booth. It took a l-o-n-g time because I was also rearranging a lot of things. I came home and worked on researching some pattern glass pieces until bedtime. I love doing this, especially when I find out that something is called "Grand" or "Robin with Wheat" or "Chickenwire" or such names. Who came up with these! The Chickenwire piece seems to be my best recent find, bought in an antique store and worth about 6 times what I paid for it. I guess the dealer was not able to find the pattern and just priced it according to what she/he paid for it. We all do that sometimes because it is impossible to know every antique we find.

Today was more booth work, this time at Marietta. I loaded more inventory (well, Larry did) into my car and we headed out. We stopped in town to wash and vaccum my car for the first time in I'm-embarrassed-to-say. I spent about 4 hours working on my Marietta booth. A cabinet had sold so I had some re-arranging to do, and it was actually a good thing because I added a new-to-me unit that allowed a lot more display. And did I take photos? Um, no--not at either place! I was so tired both days by the time I finished I never even thought about it until I was headed home. Ah well.

Tonight I packed eBay sales and packed my suitcase because I am leaving in the morning for Virginia. My aunt is traveling with me (isn't there a book by Graham Greene called Travels with My Aunt?) so that she can visit her daughter in northern VA. This is a busy trip--we'' stop for lunch with my sister Judy and maybe a quick visit with my oldest son at his bank, then I'll drop off my aunt and go to my sister Theresa's house. Friday I speak to Adam Booth's Appalachian Storytelling class at Shepherd University and perform at a house concert in the evening. The concert is a benefit for a local veterans foundation called the Fisher House Foundation. It provides housing for the families of veterans who are in the hospital. My good friend and awesome storyteller Ellouise Schoettler will be performing with me. I think it will be a wonderful evening.

On Saturday I will get to see some of my granddaughters and my daughter-in-law, and I hope to also visit my son's grave. I don't get there often; it's a 6-hour trip. I'll spend the night with them, then on Sunday I'll be doing another house concert in Martinsburg for a dear lady who has has me before. My aunt and I will head home after that. A busy time, I think, but I am looking forward to it.

And what will Larry be doing? Why, holding down the fort! He'll be working on the chinking on the new log room, and entertaining my oldest son and his son on Saturday when they arrive to get ready for the opening of deer season on Monday. I may well come home to an empty house if they all stay at their deer camp.

So that's where I've been and where I'm going. I may not be able to post much over the next few days but next week I hope to be back on track...again. I hope all of you have a beautiful weekend.

Copyright 2012 Susanna Holstein. All rights reserved. No Republication or Redistribution Allowed without attribution to Susanna Holstein.


Joy@aVintageGreen said...

Seriously very busy. Good busy though. Have wonderful visits.

Anonymous said...

Cannot wait to see you! Although the time between August and now has flown by, it still has been a long time! Love and hugs See you soon. tm

Sue said...

Yikes! You ARE a busy lady. But it all sounds like good stuff...


PS. It's good that your husband was able to take the step of meeting up with the other vets of Vietnam this year. Seems like that can only lead to further healing. Experiencing that war seems to have been a lifelong legacy for many. "/

Nance said...

We'll miss you this week but we'll have plenty of stories to look forward to when you return. Know you'll have fun! As my folks used to say when company or family was leaving "hurry back". "take it easy".

Amy said...

Be safe over the holiday. Glad to hear you are putting together a collection of ghost stories. Keep at it!


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