Susan Spess Shay

Still playing make believe.


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Daylight Saving What?

time-clockDaylight Savings time, again. Don’t you love it?

I don’t!

I don’t mind it, really, once I get used to it–after about a month or so. But for that month . . .

I remember when I first ran smack into DST when I was a kid. Missouri started instating it before Okieland did. And while I normally didn’t know or care what was happening in Missouri, for one week of the year I did. That was the week we went to church camp.

Cyokamo. (♪♫ The finest Christian Camp I know is Old Cyokamo . . . ♫♪)

About the time I was in 6th or 7th grade, the Missouri legislature decided they would save energy by changing time. The only energy I noticed changing was the energy it took for me to drag myself out of bed an hour early for that week. We didn’t have air conditioning at Cyokamo, and our electric fans blew 24/7, so nothing changed.

trailer clock1

The next time I ran into DST was during the energy crisis. Seems to me we had at least one year when we stayed on DST all year round, so we could save lots and lots of energy. (Am I remembering that right?)

Do we really save any energy at all?

When we smack into DST each year, for me it’s still hard (and harder every year) to drag out of the sack at my getting up time, and then I’m sleepy all day long for a while.

serindipity-sunrise

I started wondering a couple of things–

  1. Is it worth all the pain and anguish it causes?
  2. Can I get used to it all over again? (That was during the first, whiny hours.)

And, no surprise, God had an answer for me.

“I am the Lord, the God of all mankind. Is anything too hard for me?” Jeremiah 32:27.

All I have to do is abide in Him (and stop whining) and I can get ‘er done.

So how do you really feel about Daylight Savings Time? Love it? Hate it? Is it easy for you to switch time or does it take a week or so to get used to it?

And do we really save any energy or is that just an excuse to make us get out of bed?

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Bucket Listing

Like most people, I have a “bucket list” of places I’d like to visit. On that list are all the places we learned about in American History. (I like History? Who knew? Probably not my teachers. LOL.)

Many of the places I’d love to see are east of Okie World. I’ve driven past many of those places, but didn’t actually stop. Why???

Well . . . (Clears throat.)

Once upon a time, back in the dark ages when G-Man and I only had one child, we flew to Rhode Island, because we were going to “bobtail” a truck back to Oklahoma.

Do you know how long it takes to get to Rhode Island from Okie Land?

For.

Ev.

Ver.

FOREVER!

Just the flight to New York City seemed like a thousand years, but then to get to RI, we had to take a “puddle jumper.” Ever been in a puddle jumper? Well, there’s room for about 16 people, including the pilot. Okay, maybe 30, but not many more. It’s one seat on one side of the aisle and two on the other. Or maybe it was just one on each side of the aisle. But the plane was so small, they couldn’t close the door to the pilots’ seats.

To be very honest, I don’t remember, exactly. (I’ve tried to delete the memory from my mind.)

After we leapt over a couple of puddles, we made it to Rhode Island and the place where we were to pick up the truck we were buying. I wrestled our single suitcase into the cab, scaled the monster (I was afraid I’d need a ladder to get in) and planted myself in the bench seat to wait for G-Man while he finished up inside.

1-map

This map is kind of small, but it shows where we went. Rhode Island is A. It’s one of those little states up there by America’s nose. 😉 C-Town is B.

According to Google Maps, it’s 1556 miles from RI to OK, and should take 23 hours to drive. Took us three days.

Why did it take so long, you ask?

It started with us going right through NYC, through the tunnels and over the bridges you see on TV in the cop shows instead of trucking it through White Plains. After that we were on the New Jersey Turnpike. Wall-to-wall vehicles, five o’clock in the afternoon (or there about) and it gridlocked. Shutdown. Nobody moved faster than about one mile an hour.

And I needed to potty. (Yeah, TMI. I know. But I still remember the pain after all these years!)

I know at least one person reading this has at some time ridden in the cab of a big rig and not had a trailer on behind. That’s bobtailing. And it’s ROUGH. Too rough to read, to rough to knit, and too loud to talk. Much. LOL.

Turned out, I was pregnant at the time, but didn’t know it yet. (Surprise!)

We spent the first night in New Jersey. If you look on the map, it’s practically next door to Rhode Island, but the universe had time to expand in that long day!

Did I mention it was winter? Snow covered the ground, and we saw several wrecks. When one of the wrecks included a big rig, it was usually on its side, the trailer broken open long ways and whatever it hauled was spilled out all over the road.

We made it all the way through Pennsylvania, where a lot of those places on my bucket list are.  That’s where America’s first capital was. Our forefathers signed the Declaration of Independence there. Betsy Ross lived in that neighborhood. Valley Forge is somewhere around there. (Isn’t it?) And I think Washington’s famous crossing of the Delaware was around there.

Old Bedford Village is there. (I wanted to stop at Old Bedford so badly on that trip. And not just for the bathroom!)

American Bandstand and Dick Clark were there!!! Philadelphia is where so many of the great singing groups from the ’50’s got their start.

I think I’m moving Pennsylvania to the top of my Bucket List. 🙂

BTW: We finally did make it home, but I’ve never again volunteered to go with G-Man to bobtail a truck anywhere. And I doubt I ever would . . . unless he asked me. 🙂


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We Hit a Bonanza!

Oh, my stars! We had so much fun yesterday. We met Butch, Sundance, the guys from “Cowboys and Aliens” and Ed Harris! Actually, WE didn’t meet them, but we met people who not only met them, they worked with them.

I knew my friend, Cathy Carmichael Johns, had been to Santa Fe a few times, so I asked her what we should do while we’re here. She told us, “Bonanza Creek Ranch is not to be missed!” so first thing we did yesterday morning was drive out to BCR. We pulled into the ranch house. It looked like we might be in the wrong place, so we didn’t stop but instead pullout back out and drove down the road a little ways.

The owner’s name and phone number was on a sign by this locked gate, so I tried to give her a call. While my phone was ringing, she pulled in next to us!

Imogene Hughes is so nice! Naturally. She was born in Okie-Land, so how could she be anything else?

When she pulled in, I laughed and asked, “Are you Imogene?” We had a great talk, then she called a guy who works for her and asked him to give us a tour. He seemed more than happy to take us around.

And guess what! Remember Cholo in Lonesome Dove? That was him!!! His real name is Jack Caffrey, and he gave G-Man and me a tour of Bonanza Creek Ranch, where lots of movies are made.

This is Jack–aka Cholo. He’s an actor with a bunch of credits and an agent! What a nice man. I asked a ton of questions (big surprise) and he kept saying, “It’s isn’t real. Remember, it was just a movie.

He showed us Clara’s house on Lonesome Dove. And the pond where they had the picnic. And the barn and corral. I’m telling you, it was cool!

We walked on the street where the aliens attacked the town in “Cowboys and Aliens.” (It was SO COOL!)

 Picture from the Bonanza Creek Ranch website.

We went into the barn from “The Astronaut Farmer“. We saw where they made the new “3:10 to Yuma“. They also made parts of “John Carpenter’s Vampires” on her ranch.

When we got back, we walked to the Plaza and looked in windows and at gorgeous Indian jewelry. Want to talk about a group of talented people. Oh, my stars! Today I’m going back to buy some.

Maybe. 🙂

Have you been to Santa Fe? What was your favorite part?


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God. Bless. America.

Fireworks #1

Fireworks #1 (Photo credit: Camera Slayer)

Patriotism came naturally to me as a kid. Most of the kids I knew had dads who’d been in the service and every now and then even told stories about that time.

Susie Lunsford’s dad, Marsha Williams’s dad, Marsha Hagberg’s dad and Cathy Bayouth’s dad, and I’m sure several more of my friends’ dads, all served.

When the National Anthem was played, we stood at strict attention. C-Town twirlers even had a special salute they did during the song. (I was never a twirler with the band, but if I had a baton, I could show it to you.)

Each morning, we started school by putting our hands over our hearts and saying the Pledge of Allegiance. And we meant every word.

We didn’t have 4th of July parades, but we had lots of fireworks. I doubt if any of us grew up without having a Black Cat go off in our fingers. I remember silly boys who would pretend to smoke a lighted firecracker and end up with blistered lips.

My friend even had a dog who ate firecrackers before they could pop.

Cindy or Lisa (one of my sisters) bit down on a popper (a small, orb-shaped thing that made a tiny explosion when it hit a hard surface) because it looked like the cereal we ate for breakfast. I still wonder what that felt like. 😛

A family in our church sold fireworks every summer. I’m sure they  made a lot of money. They might even have paid their way through college doing it, I don’t know. I thought it would be fun to have access to that many explosives, but the long, hot hours in that little building didn’t attract me, and very few fireworks stands are air-conditioned, so I didn’t apply for a job. 😉

It’s funny. As kids, we say or sing the words, stand at attention and go through all the motions without knowing the full reason why. The real, basic, honest-to-goodness reason?

Freedom.

Oh, I know we aren’t REALLY free to do anything, say anything or act anyway we want. That would be anarchy. But we’re free from tyranny. We can remain seated when the flag passes, we don’t have to pledge allegiance or sing the anthem.

We even have the freedom to burn the flag in protest (although it infuriates me to the point I wonder if I have the freedom to smack the burner when I hear about that happening) and no one gets put in jail.

We can disagree with the government and not worry about disappearing in the night or being arrested and put in a concentration camp. Because we’re free.

God. Bless. America.

If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land. 2 Chr. 7:14

Praying for healing in our land.

And I’m praying for Lesta Kay.


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FLAGS ON THE HILL

Yesterday evening, G-Man and I went to visit his parents’ graves. (His dad was in Patton’s 3rd during WWII.) They’re on the far north side, and driving out I happened to notice, clear across the cemetery on the south side, a beautiful sight. Naturally, I snapped a picture.

I took a few more out the window when my man said, “What are you doing?”

“Taking pictures of those flags over there.”

So we took a detour to see the flags on the hill.

I don’t know about you, but the sight of all that red, white and blue bunting standing out in the breeze stirs my blood.

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National Day of Prayer

Is it Nation Prayer Day or the National Day of Prayer? I’m not sure, but today is that day.

Do you observe it? I kind of look at every day as a day of prayer, but I love that our nation has a day set aside to observe it. There’s even a website, complete with a prayer. (Need a jump-start? Here you go!)

So, this years prayers? Mine will be for family and friends, of course. Some I see everyday, some I seldom see face-to-face, but still love the stuffings out of them.

I’m praying for a couple of babies who are on their way into this world.

I’m praying I’ll someday soon have a special baby on its way into my life. 🙂

I’m praying for my Small Town World. We’re going through some rocky times right now. Sides will be taken, fingers pointed. Words will be said, people hurt and, possibly, friendships ended. But we have a town full of good people who’d jump at the chance to help out a friend or stranger.

We will survive.

I’m praying for people who’ve had their hearts hurt and are still aching because of it. And for people who are alone and lonely. And for those who don’t know the Lord.

I can’t just ask, though. There’s too much to be thankful for–

My sweet family. All of them, from my man to my kids and kids-in-law (Is that a real term? It should be!) my sibs and their crews, cousins, aunts, uncles, greats, seconds, third and fourths!

The beauty of the world around us, especially this spring with all the rain.

For health. Imagination. Laughter. Joy.

And what about music? Color? Fragrance in the world around us? And taste?

You know, God could have created a black and white world with no odors, no sound and no beauty in it, and we could have survived. Instead, He blessed us a beautiful, harmonic, aromatic place to exist, and I’m so very thankful!

And I’m very thankful for Okieland, AND America. For our history as well as our future.

Today is National Prayer Day. Will you be praying?

So . . . what’s on your list?


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My Cup Runneth

A friend gave me a gift that makes me grin everytime I look at it.

Can you read the caption? It says, “DRAW FREELY UPON YOUR IMAGINATION.” And under the quote, it says, “Albert Einstein.”

I love the cup! I drink coffee out of it every chance I get. 🙂 But even more, I love the idea that Albert was so cool. I mean, he’s the guy who came up with the theory of relativity. E=MC2 right?

Who knew a guy who could use his brain like that could also design such cool cups? After drinking out of that cup for several years, I thought I’d see what else Al had to say. Turns out, he was quoted quite a lot.

  •  “Imagination is more important than knowledge.”

Oooh, I love that, because I have way more imagination than I have knowledge. (Okay, we won’t go there.) I’m glad to know at least Albert thought it was a good thing.

Love it, Al!

I kept looking, then landed on this one.

  • “I want to know God’s thoughts; the rest are details.”

Albert Einstein knew God? I’m so gold to know that.

  • “God is subtle but he is not malicious.”

He did know about Him!

  • “God does not care about our mathematical difficulties. He integrates empirically.”  All righty, then. 😉

I wondered what else he said about God.

  • Before God we are all equally wise – and equally foolish.”
  • “God always takes the simplest way.”
  • “God does not play dice.”
  • “God may be subtle, but he isn’t plain mean.”

The way Al worshiped God might not be the same as I do, but he knew Him. Here’s another of my favorite quotes of his–

  • “The hardest thing in the world to understand is the income tax.”

Maybe we should combine this quote with “imagination is more important than knowledge,” and we could have some fun with our CPA. Or, wait. Did Al Capone already tried that?  😉

Amen to that, brother!

Maybe I should introduce him to Terminally Curious.

I think they’d really like each other. 🙂

Of course, Terminally Curious wanted to know more about him. He was born in Germany in 1879, later moved to Switzerland, where he became a citizen, moved back to Germany in 1914 where he became a citizen, but renounced his citizenship in 1933 for political reasons.

That’s when he came to America.

He was married twice, divorced once, and had three children–two boys and a girl. And that makes me wonder, Did he bring his children to America with him or did they live out WWII in Germany? How sad would that be?

Did his children have his brilliance and imagination?