Susan Spess Shay

Still playing make believe.


Back in My Own Bed!

I’m back! (Did you notice I was gone?)

G-Man, Sisters Debbie, Cindy and I all made a zooming trip to Colorado for one of my aunt’s funerals. NOT the close part of Colorado, naturally. Uncle Robert (Mom’s bro) lives on the far side of that gorgeous state!

I have to tell you, I adore Colorado. Love seeing the miraculous sights. I took some pictures and I plan to share them as soon as I have the energy to download. Right now, I’m pooped.

We left here Friday evening, spent the night at Hays, Kansas, and drove the rest of the way the next day. (We’d originally planned to drive the entire way in one fell swoop. Argh!)

Uncle Robert has one daughter–Julie. Julie has two adorable sons, and they entertained us the entire time. One is a jewelry expert (he’s middle school or early high school age, so that’s pretty darn good!) When a woman walks into the room, he zooms in on their jewelry and starts naming the stones they’re wearing.

I think I disappointed him. I don’t wear many gems. I did have on turquoise (I love that stone!) when we met, but from his response, it was probably faux turq. I was a real disappointment to him.

The other boy reminded me of my kids when they were his age and super excited about having guests who automatically loved them like we loved him.

We had a few sword fights (pencil for swords) and I told him about how my kiddos used to use anything and everything they could get their hands on to make swords.

#1 son would have had a blast playing with this kid. They could have made lots of sabers together. And this one had a big love of Leggos. One of the neighbors loaned him a huge tub of them. #1 could have built an entire Pirate World with that pile of clicky blocks.

And I got to see my Forever Friend, Cathy. I’d never been to their town before, and I felt kind of out of place until Cathy came over. Her hometown hug made me feel like I was home.

I had a piece of the most delicious cake that Cathy made for the fam. It was baked in a bunt pan and looked like chocolate. But it wasn’t chocolate (not my fav). It was spice cake of some kind.

Cathy, if you’re read this, I NEED THAT RECIPE!

I got to hear the Real Story about how Cathy and Sweet Aunt Sally discovered their C-Town connection.

This won’t be perfect, but it’s as close as I can get. 🙂

Forever Friend Cathy went to work as a math professor in the college where Sweet Aunt Sally was the secretary for the math department. One day, Cathy was in the office on the computer and she muttered something that caught Cousin Julie’s (Sweet Sally’s daughter) ear. (I’m not sure if Julie was in college or just there because her mom was there.)

Anyway, whatever it was that Cathy said (I’m guessing it was something like, “well, I’ll swan!” but Julie couldn’t remember exactly.) Julie stopped and said something like, “I’ve only heard my cousins in Oklahoma say that. Where are you from?”

Cathy answered, “I’m from C-Town, Oklahoma.”

Julie answered, “So are my cousins!”

Cathy was surprised. “What’s the family name?”


“You’re kidding!” I imagine Cathy was astonished by now. “My forever friend growing up was Susan Spess!”

Cathy became part of Uncle Robert’s family. He called her his almost niece. 🙂 Now, I think they’ve decided to leave the Almost out. Cathy was with them right after Sweet Sally’s death, taking delicious food each time she went over.

She even spoke at the funeral. I’d mentioned to her how obits always disappoint me because they don’t share the real heart of the person who’s passed on.

The minister, Preacher Bob, opened the floor to anyone who wanted to talk about Sweet Sally. Several men stood up, many of whom had worked with Sweet Sally at the college. But none of them got to the heart of Sally.

Cathy did. And I’ll be forever grateful to her for it.

Uncle Robert let me look at their wedding pictures while we were there. He looked like a movie star from the ’50’s or early ’60’s, but I can’t remember the man’s name. Tall, slender, olive skin tone and black hair. That man was handsome!

And Sweet Sally was tall, so slender Robert could put his hands around her waist and touch his fingertips. In her wedding dress, she looked like a queen.

The funniest of their wedding pics was when Sally threw her bouquet. Sally’s sister and I are going for those flowers! Her sister was about twenty, and I was ten, going on eleven.

I’m not sure who caught the toss. I think the sister did–but she played dirty. 😉 (Just kidding.)

It was a bitter-sweet reunion. I’m hoping we can have a real one before someone else dies.

And I’m looking forward to that reunion we’ll have in the sweet by-and-by!

I always enjoy learning things about myself. Here’s what I learned on this trip–

  • I like sleeping in my own bed.
  • If there’s food, I will eat. (Whether I’m hungry or not.)
  • I don’t get car sick. (I can read or knit and it doesn’t bother me.)
  • I love sleeping in my own bed.
  • Free breakfasts are fantastic–even if they aren’t really good.
  • I like traveling best when I’m asleep.
  • I’m not afraid of heights . . . I’m terrified.
  • I adore sleeping in my own bed.