The Story of My Flag

 On August 1, 2007 we buried our dad.  My heart was sinking. Our dad was a veteran, as was our mother who passed before him. He had a military burial, complete with a 21 gun salute and playing of taps.  I was presented the flag, and my heart that was sinking was suddenly filled with pride.   To be presented our nation’s flag in honor of a wonderful dad, husband and veteran was quite an honor.  Dad also worked on the railroad and at the conclusion of the service, after the playing of the taps was done and all was said, in the distance, was the glorious sound of a train.

The flag has remained as is, in the plastic, with the 3 shell casings from the 21 gun salute, unopened since then.  It is placed high in honor of dad’s memory and his service to this country, as a soldier, a veteran, a member of the vfw, and as the best dad one could hope to ever have.

Dad, it’s an honor to have this flag, I am proud to be your daughter, and I miss you very very much.

“I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the republic for which it stands, one nation under God, indivisible with liberty and justice for all”flag

My Bill Clinton/William Shatner/Leonard Nimoy/Work Dream

I’m at my workplace, during a conference and having a staff picnic.  There are 3 buildings on the grounds….the main tower, a conference building with a fireplace, nice leather furniture and tables, and of course a “break area” with tables, chairs, kitchen appliances, etc.

Something happens to a coworker’s child and she is rushed to the hospital.  While awaiting news of her child, she is told it’s an unexcused absence if she does not go back to her duties.  After testing and monitoring, it is determined the child is going to be fine.  With that good news, we go to the break area to finish our picnic.

While there, I am talking about a certain car commercial that pits the 2 Mr Spocks from Star Trek together, the original Mr Spock (Leonard Nimoy) and the new Mr Spock from the latest movie coming out.  Suddenly, Leonard Nimoy appears….he is wearing baggy old man pants and a teeshirt.  His hair is long and he is carrying his golf clubs.  After he gets there, in walks Bill Clinton, who says to me “Who do I remind you of right now?”  Then, in a blink of an eye, he turns into William Shatner going thru various phases of Captain Jim Kirk, from young to older.  He is giving Leonard a hard time about the commercial. At that point, Leonard Nimoy says “I always have been and always shall be your friend” and leaves to go play golf.

The party then moves to the conference center, where in front of the fireplace lie all my dogs…staring at me.  I said “How the hell did you guys get here?” And I wake up to find all my dogs in the bedroom staring at me.

Live long and prosper folks.

The Story of Grace and The Maybasket Fairy

It’s Mayday.   From the time I was 6 years old, Mayday has been very special and holds a tradition near and dear to my heart.  I learned about Maybaskets in the 1st grade, and was very excited to bring home my first homemade one.

“Mommy” I asked, “What do I do with this?”  So, mom came up with the idea of leaving it on our neighbor Grace’s front door.  She carefully instructed me to hang it on the doorhandle, knock really loud and run back to her around the corner of our front porch, where we hid.  She said “Run fast, because if she catches you she has to give you a hug and a kiss.”  Well, she did not catch me that year, or the year after that, or even the year after that.

This became a tradition, every year for the past 48 years Grace has gotten a Maybasket.  When I moved away, my sister left them, and when I moved back to the area, I picked up where I had left off.  When I became an adult with children of my own, I taught them the joys of leaving Grace a Maybasket (partly because I couldn’t run as fast anymore and partly because I wanted to share this tradition with them).

When I was about 40 years old, Grace finally figured out who her Maybasket fairy was.  They had torn down our neighborhood to build a Walgreens and Grace had moved into a secure apartment complex.  It was impossible to sneak in, hang it on her door and run, so I started hanging them on her car.  One day it seems, she caught me out the window.  She never really told me she caught me, but would say things like…”The Maybasket fairy came to see me again…I wish I could catch her so she could get a hug and kiss.”  Then she would say “If you see the Maybasket fairy, would you please tell her thank you?”

Her Maybasket was so important to her every year.  After she had to go into assisted living, I tracked her down through family and friends.  Grace should not have to go without her Maybasket.  She said to me once “I can’t believe the Maybasket fairy found me here!  I love my Maybasket fairy!”  I told her the Maybasket fairy would find her no matter what.

I am now 54 and Grace is about 95.  A few years back, she had a stroke and it was thought she would pass.  She got her Maybasket early that year.  She is somewhat like a baby now….unable to feed herself, unable to speak really.  She looks blankly at you when she does look at you.  Last year, she couldn’t wake up long enough to realize I was there.  This year, however, she opened her eyes, unable to speak, the corner of her mouth tried to curl up in a little grin.  She may not realize who I was, but I know she remembers her Maybasket.