Thursday, March 23, 2017

Holiday Hallelujah!

Sunday, March 26, is Make Your Own Holiday Day! Boy howdy, do I have a good one! (Drumroll--Trumpet--Clash of Cymbals)

Have Your Belated Adolescent Rebellion Day

   Never having been allowed to have one at the appropriate time, I’ve been having mine for several years now and enjoying every minute of it! I think it actually started when the Commemorative Air Force brought some of their vintage planes to the local airport.
   When it was the Confederate Air Force (am assuming the PC police did their number on the organization!), it came regularly to Midland, Texas, about 40 miles from where I was teaching at the time. There were still quite a few WW II vets around to put in appearances, sell their books, and display their memorabilia. Wandering around one of the huge hangars, stopping to chat and listening to them talk--what a once-in-a-lifetime experience! Then, of course, the restored planes would take wing and amaze onlookers.
   But I digress--back to the day at the local airport. In previous years, I’d gone out to see the planes and chat with the folks who restored and cared for them, and I’d watched wistfully as groups boarded the planes for a short flight--at a long price! But that particular day, I pulled out my credit card, forked over the price, and climbed (all right, was shoved along!) into a B-24 built the year I was born (1944) though it never saw action overseas.
   Strapped into my seat beside a gun mount and fighting some airsickness as we flew low and slow, I knew I’d made the right decision. I can’t take it with me looped through my brain as I tried to imagine the crews who’d crossed the Channel into Germany and other destinations--and those who didn’t cross back to their bases in England.
   So that was the beginning. Other adventures beckoned. About a year later, sitting in my study looking out into the empty street, I decided it was time to go somewhere I’d always wanted to go--Charleston, SC. Within a couple of days, I’d researched sites to see, made airline/hotel reservations, checked on a shuttle from the airport when I arrived somewhat late at night--then packed my bag and toodled off.
   Since then, I’ve packed and re-packed that little bag for a variety of trips when and where I want to go. My daughter-in-law said my son commented (but not to me!), “Mom’s getting to be a gad-about, isn’t she?”
   Hey--I raised two boys single-handedly after their father’s death, went back to school for a master’s degree, worked full-time, then took care of my parents and their business when they both became terminally ill. Don’t get me wrong--I did it all willingly and without complaint. But then I retired, and it was my turn.
   Well, almost. Granddaughter #1 showed up, and I found myself providing daycare for eighteen months. Finally, I had to say, “No more.” I don’t regret the strong bond we forged which endures to this day, but I wasn’t getting any younger--and I’d had an adolescent rebellion waiting in the wings all my life. On my own, with no one to deny me the privilege--and, yes, the right!--I’ve been not “walking the line” ever since.
   Believe me--the old adages are true:
You can’t take it with you.
You’re not getting any younger




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