Monday, November 30, 2009

Matter of Perspective

Today's Saying

We worry about what a child will become tomorrow, yet we forget that he is someone today.
~Stacia Tauscher

How we view the world and what we do depends on our perspective, our life at that moment.
I was reminded of that on Friday when I got this comment:
“Glad you are doing better and I hope you continue to exercise, if only a little. “
This was in response to my statement that I was walking seven minutes a day on the treadmill.
The commentator saw this as a “ little exercise”.
I saw it as a mountain to be climbed and I had climbed it.
Now from the perspective of somebody who can run, jump, and climb mountains seven minutes on a treadmill at the slowest speed is very little exercise.
But from my perspective since I hadn’t walked except from one room to another in over a year it was a mountain to be climbed. It was hard work. It hurt.
As of today I have reached my first goal of ten minutes.
From your perspective just a little bit more exercise but for me higher up the mountain.
To climb that mountain has taken lots of preparation.
I needed an oxygen hose from the concentrator to the computer room so I could take in two liters of oxygen all the while I’m walking.
I needed a chair nearby to drop into when I finished so I could let the pain pass.
For me a mountain top. For somebody else an ant hill.
The real problem is I don’t know if it is strengthening the stomach and chest muscles I need for breathing.
I certainly hope it is.
My next goal is fifteen minutes but that mountain is really high.
It does have some side effects though.
I’m having less stomach trouble and I’m sleeping better.
Sometimes a little bit is a long way up the mountain.
It’s all in the perspective.
When I came out of my coma my legs had forgotten how to walk.
My therapist worked with me every day. It was painful. It was impossible.
When I finally walked two feet he was so happy.
It’s all in the perspective.
I guess that’s true of most of life.
I hope you climb your mountains as you see them.

Petrovich , his wife and daughters are in Green Bay at her mother’s house where they went for Thanksgiving. They are planning on staying the week so that the grandparents can have some time with the girls and they can do some Christmas shopping. This makes people in Pigeon Falls rest easier because as long as Petrovich is gone there will be none of those horrible driblets.
Bonnie McGregor is getting ready for the first Christmas where her twins can open gifts. She knows their brother and sisters will give them far too much but she has to shop anyway. These were the twins that were once thought to be part of driblet 172 but it doesn’t seem now like they were. In any case Bonnie loves them and so does their daddy.
For the most part life is back to normal in Pigeon Falls. The dragons fly over once a day, the ghost piano plays, Nancy’s poltergeist continues to surprise, the train come through mostly on time, and the town seems to have recovered from its trip to 1890.
The residents are making Christmas lists and planning shopping trips. Dr. Fortress has set up a special train to Marquette and a bus or buses to take people shopping when they get there. They will have access to Target, Wal-Mart, Menards and a number of other big stores. He already has had to add an extra car the demand is so great.
Of course those with relatives in Iron Mountain can take the milk train in the morning ( it’s cheaper) to Iron Mountain and find some of the same stores. The relatives provide the transportation in the city.
All of Pigeon Falls is looking forward to Christmas.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Advent Sunday One

Today's Saying

God's gifts put man's best dreams to shame.
~Elizabeth Barrett Browning
Today we start a new Church year. We move in the Common Lectionary from the B year to the C year. In the B year most of the Gospel readings were from Mark now they will be from Luke. If you attend a liturgical Church this morning you will notice that the Altar hangings have changed from green to either violet or blue. Violet is the color of Kings and marks the coming King Jesus. Blue is the color of the sky and marks our anticipation of the return of Jesus.
This is the first of the four Sundays of the Advent season. The season has two purposes:
1. To get us ready for the coming Christ of Christmas and the major Church holiday Christmas itself.
2. To remind us that Jesus is going to return.
The text for today is Luke 21-25-36.
Here Jesus gives the Church some signs of when he will return. People are and have always been fascinated by the end times. They love stories of dark angels, death horses, plagues, battles. These sell books . The writers always write as if they really understood it all.
In today’s text Jesus says “There will be signs in the sun, moon and stars. On the earth, nations will be in anguish and perplexity at the roaring and tossing of the sea. 26 Men will faint from terror, apprehensive of what is coming on the world, for the heavenly bodies will be shaken. “
Then Jesus tells them that these signs should remind them that their redemption is near.
The signs which we will always have with us serve the pirose of reminding us of the One who saved us and who saves us.
It’s all about redemption. It’s not about fear or battles , it’s about being saved.
Jesus doesn't want us “ weighed down with dissipation, drunkenness and the anxieties of life”. He wants us to live free. To live as one of His. So He reminds us He is coming again. The when is not important. The promise is important.
Advent reminds us that Jesus did not save us and forget us. He is coming again.
Look up. Be ready. Be free.

Pastor Joan will be back in her good old pulpit again today. She will be preaching in the wonderful stone church. She will have a wireless mike. Here is part of her sermon:
“Once , a long time ago I went to visit a friend who lives near Detroit. I sent him a letter and told him when I was coming but somehow it all got confused. He got the dates wrong or maybe I did and he was in Upper Michigan visiting hisparents. I knocked on his door and his neighbor said he’d be back next week so I left the note on the door saying I was sorry I missed him and drove all the way back to Chicago where I was in Seminary. The note blew off the door. He waited the following week for me. We got everything wrong. We misread the signs. It is a miracle we ever married.
Advent which begins today is about signs. It is about signs that point to Christmas and to the Christ of Christmas who is coming again. If we are not careful we will make the signs more important than the Christ they point to. We will misread the signs and miss the Christ.
The purpose of the signs in today’s text is to point us to Jesus and remind us he save us. We need to know that in a world of stress , where you can’t turn on your TV without hearing some bad news that we have been set free.
We belong to Jesus and He is coming again for us.
He wants us to be free. He wants us to be ready. He doesn’t want us being crushed or destroyed by the prssires of the world. He know that this world’s answer to stress will destroy us.
It is Advent . Look up! He wo saves us is coming again.
Be free. Be ready.”

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Six Words

Today's Saying

The great advantage of living in a large family is that early lesson of life's essential unfairness. ~Nancy Mitford

Somehow I survived a Thanksgiving gathering.

Some of the people of Pigeon Falls are having a little trouble adjusting to being back. They had learned to like the slower quieter pace of life in 1890. There was no music blaring, no TV on all the time, no cell phone that could find you no matter where you were. Now they are back to all those things and they feel stressed. They never thought they would look at the time in 1890 as special but they have begun to think it might have been.
Some of those people are using the best of that experience to change their life now. They are leaving the TV off. They are not taking their cell phone with them when they go out. They feel good about the little changes.
Of course, some just jumped back into 2009 with both feet. This is their world and they missed it. Some of those were in Iron Mountain on black Friday. They pushed into Wal-Mart looking for great bargains.
Giles Insolaw was one of those. He was just about to get the greatest computer buy ever when the fat lady pushed by and stamped on his foot. It swelled up like a balloon and they had to take him to the Emergency Room at the Hospital where he sat for an hour in pain before they got to him. After tests and X-rays he discovered a bone was broken and they called in an Orthopedic specialist. The Doctor said that he thought it would heal nicely on its own but as soon as the swelling goes down they should put a cast on it to protect the foot. They put him in the hospital over night. Nothing like that happened in 1890. But then if had stayed in Pigeon Falls it wouldn’t have happened in 2009 .

Friday, November 27, 2009


Today's Saying

Family quarrels are bitter things. They don't go by any rules. They're not like aches or wounds; they're more like splits in the skin that won't heal because there's not enough material.
~F. Scott Fitzgerald

Click HERE to get to my 55s

What you are about to read leans on the truth and bends it ever so little . But in the process every Friday you will catch a glimpse of me.And I save the cost of a psychiatrist.

1. The new medication is still working wonders but it will soon come to the end of the dosage. ( Stems from that’s all the Doctor prescribed)
2. Has a great Thanksgiving at Peter’s house. ( Stems from loving my family)
3. Got too play some canasta . ( Stems from our strange Thanksgiving custom)
4. Am now walking seven minutes every day on the treadmill and it hurts. ( Stems from the arthritis in the knees)
5. Finally got five things posted to e-Bay that should have been posted a month ago. ( Stems from extreme procrastination)
6. Will not take my precious scooter out on this black Friday. ( Stems from fear that in my greed for a bargain I might run over somebody and get it all messed up)
7. Discovered that Lionel track left sitting in a box rusts . ( Stems from some stupid scientific principle but I hate rust.)
8. I think Monday or Tuesday we will put up our Christmas tree . ( Stems from a need to have it up as long as possible)
9. We have a new train to go around it. ( Stems from getting tired of the one we used every year for the last four)
10.It is hard to find fourteen facts for this segment. ( Stems from leading such a boring life)
11. They took off my NCIS on Tuesday for a local Christmas parade, I’m upset. ( Stems from my preference for mystery over marching bands and stuff)
12. The little Wal-Mart hand held pies have almost no filling and lots and lots of crust. ( Stems from crust being cheaper than good filling.)
13. Have now printed out all of October’s blog entries to send to my sister. ( Stems from her being too stubborn to go on the internet.)
14. Went to wrap Betty’s Christmas gifts but discovered I only had Star Wars wrapping paper . So I didn’t. ( Stems from my thought that Luke with a light saber was not a good wrapping for a Christmas gift.)

Yesterday was a great Thanksgiving Day in Pigeon Falls. The town. Of course, was happy to be back in 2009 and very thankful for that.
There were the usual family gatherings. The usual unreasonable amount of food was consumed. The usual families had the usual family fights. The usual people aren’t talking to each other. It will pass and they will be ready for another round by Christmas. Kids got to see cousins they only see once or twice a year and they played and screamed and like the big people they sometimes fought.
But it was a good Thanksgiving. Nobody got too sick. Nobody had an accident coming or going. There were new memories made and in years to come they will be shared at similar family gatherings.
One could say that life in Pigeon Falls was back to normal.
Today Wink’s Wood’s had its big Black Friday sale. There were some real bargains and the doors opened at 4:00 in the morning. The first person to show up came in at 8:00 and didn’t buy anything. Given when they got back they tried to get by with word of mouth advertising but it apparently didn’t work.
Some people did get up early this morning and took the milk train to Iron Mountain to try the black Friday sales there. They saw on TV that Wal-Mart had some really great morning sales. They hope to come back with a good part of their Christmas shopping done.
In the midst of all of this nobody missed Eugene. But then he had never been part of anybody’s celebration. Thanksgiving dinner had come from the leftovers brought in from the restaurant at the end of the day. Somebody else ate those today.
Eugene was appreciated but forgotten.

Thursday, November 26, 2009


The thankful people of Pigeon Falls wish all of you a great Thanksgiving and may your turkey be cooked just right.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

A letter to God

Today's Saying

The family. We were a strange little band of characters trudging through life sharing diseases and toothpaste, coveting one another's desserts, hiding shampoo, borrowing money, locking each other out of our rooms, inflicting pain and kissing to heal it in the same instant, loving, laughing, defending, and trying to figure out the common thread that bound us all together. ~Erma Bombeck

A Letter to God
Dear God I know this a perfectly stupid question but Why me?
There were four of us friends that became Pastors .
There was Lanse, Michael, Roy, and I.
Lanse was the go to Pastor. If Synod had a problem congregation on the edge of falling apart they sent in Lanse and he brought your healing and new life. He was very good at that. He had a heart attack not too long ago. He’s gone Home.
I’m still here.
Why me Lord?
Michael was a natural born leader . Everyone looked up to him. We expected one day he would be a Bishop. He died of cancer, He’s gone Home.
I’m still here.
Why me Lord?
Roy loved your Scripture had a real talent for Bible study. He was charismatic. He was Evangelical. He died of some kind of infection. He’s gone Home.
I’m still here.
Why me Lord?
Do you still have some job for me? I sure can’t do much .
I can’t preach any more. I can’t visit or teach.
I could have gone Home four years or so ago . The Doctors thought I was on my way.
But I’m still here.
Why me Lord? Why me?
Was it because the angel you sent to help me on the journey. The one named Betty whose faith held me up all those years. She taught me how to love without conditions. She taught this stubborn Finn to forgive. She loved me to a stronger and stronger faith. Was it because she wanted me to stay for a awhile yet. Was it her request you honored?
Whatever the reason Lord. My love for you grows stronger with the days.
But someday I’m coming Home.
Thank you for loving me.
And still I wonder why me?

“That which never was is gone
That which should be is again. “
All over Pigeon Falls people awoke wondering if they were back in 2009. It was like children getting up on Christmas morning looking to see if Santa came. They were not disappointed. They looked around and saw electric lights, TV, computers, telephones, cell phones, indoor plumbing. It was 2009 they way they remembered it. It was the day before Thanksgiving. They would have much to be thankful for.
As the day went on they discovered a strange thing the rest of the world neither noticed their going or their return. It was as if the entire event had never happened. There were strange , unexplainable gaps in school records. There were pages that were blank in the town records, but there was no real evidence of their vanishing or their appearance.
Somehow relatives in other towns hadn’t missed them. Apparently nobody tried to call them. It was as strange as the trip back and forth itself.
During the day people stopped into Nancy’s and talked of the experience . It was if they just wanted to be sure they were not insane but that others had been there as well. The talk would eventually turn to Eugene and his sacrifice for the entire community. He gave up the modern world so they could get back.. How could anybody do more than that.
Another odd thing was that no matter what they had done back then when they came back to 2009 they had the same money and things as before they left. Not more money and not less.
But they had memories. One man had seen his great grandfather. He would remember that forever.
They learned what it was like to live with outhouses and no cars.
They saw the good and the bad of what used to be
But they were back. They were back. Oh! Great joy . They were back.
They did have a problem tomorrow was Thanksgiving and no preparations had been made. There were no turkeys in the freezers. There were no pies already cooked. There were no plans of any kind. Usually they went to the city and stocked up on everything the week before but there was no time for that now, The little local grocery was soon out of everything.
Mrs. Trumble saved the day. She had everyone who needed anything come to the Town Hall and tell her what they needed and she would have it by 3:00 . She gave the list and the money to Tommy UK and he used his power to transport himself to the big grocery stores in Iron Mountain. There he filled the lists and then transported the good back with his power. People though they were hallucinating. Here was a kid standing with piles of frozen turkeys, canned hams, pies, and other food and then he just disappeared .Being as logical as Eino they simply decided that they didn’t really see that. But everybody got what they needed. There would be food enough for family gatherings tomorrow.
Relatives coming in by train will never know how close they came to eating Thanksgiving hot dogs, without relish yet.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Health Vultures

Today's Saying

If minutes were kept of a family gathering, they would show that "Members not Present" and "Subjects Discussed" were one and the same. ~Robert Brault

I saw a bit of sixty minutes Sunday night and I learned one of the reasons Medicare is on the edge of going bankrupt. Believe it or not it wasn’t government inefficiency or regulation. It was plain old American greed.
This poor old lady was in a nursing home being fairly well taken care of. She was comfortable and she hjad friends. She was living out the last of her life the best that it could be lived. She had a bad heart and kidney problems and one day she passed out. To be on the safe side the Doctor associated with the nursing home admitted her to the hospital. Now that seems to be like a reasonable thing to do.
But once she was in the hospital the health vultures descended. She was visited by twenty five specialists including a psychiatrist. Each one billed Medicare separately. None of them in any way improved her condition. But these specialists ordered a whole barrage of tests to be made some of them painful. These were administered by and billed through the hospital helping to pay the bills of that vast institution and , of course, draining money out of Medicare.
Now , at most , she should have been seen by a kidney specialist and a heart specialist. After a horrible four days when she could have been enjoying tea with her friends in the home she was finally sent back weaker and in no way improved.
From us they took Medicare money, from her four days of life but they all got paid.
Now I don’t know if this is typical but I saw some of it in people I worked with as their Pastor. Greed pushes up the costs of the system and greed doesn’t really care about the patient.
It is so sad.

Well when the old lady/gypsy showed up yesterday they were only $57.78 short of the goal. The horses were ready , the cows were ready and the wagon was ready. They explained to her that they had tried their best to raise the full amount and hoped she would take what they had as a good faith gesture.
She explained to them that she would like to because she could use the money but this spell required the exact change. It was the nature of the spell and not an arbitrary number.
The people who had gathered looked crushed. People began to realize that they would be stuck here forever. They would never get back to 2009. The little girl who brought in her piggy bank began to cry.
Then they saw him.
He was walking all alone up the main street.
It was Eugene.
“ I have decided”, he announced, “ to stay with her. This is my decision made by my free will. I have thought about it since I got back. I have no family in 2009. I have no friends. No one will miss me except the bartender at the Fly Inn. For once in my life I can do a good thing. I can make up for a pretty worthless life. I had a great talk with Anna Belle the other day. I think I will enjoy being here with her. All I ask is that sometimes you remember me and that I cared a lot for this town.
Then he got up on the wagon and sat down holding the horse reigns.
The old lady smiled raised her hands and said
“That which never was is gone
That which should be is again. “
Then she said “the spell will work over night and tomorrow you will find yourself back in 2009.”
She got up on the wagon and gave directions to Eugene. As they moved into the woods it was as if it opened before them and closed after them and soon they were gone.
A strange quiet fell over the town.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Pieces of Me

Today's Saying

When our relatives are at home, we have to think of all their good points or it would be impossible to endure them. ~George Bernard Shaw

1. The super pill has had wonderful effects. Breathing is much more even and without pain and I’m needing less oxygen. I’m not sure it will continue when the dosage ends. I am also not sure it is doing what the Doctor wants which is to strengthen the chest and stomach muscles that do my breathing. But I am thankful for the respite in any case.
2. For those who asked I have no idea what the name of the pill is. I do know it is a steroid derivative with oodles of potential side effects. Remember my COPD is not your usual COPD but is caused by the failure of my diaphragms to do their job.
3. Last week I apparently ended up with stomach flue as well and had two days of being really sick. We now think it was some kind of stomach flue because it hit Betty next.
4. My son Pat and his boys came Saturday. Together Pat, Alex ( his oldest) and I built the Manger enclosure for the Christmas scene. Last year poor Joseph kept getting blown over. Three generations working together was really nice. I provided design and direction and they did the building. Too bad we didn’t take pictures.
5. Poor Betty spent Saturday running between bathroom and bed as the flue hit her hard. Thus nobody thought to take pictures.
6. If my strength holds we will be going to Peter’s for Thanksgiving. I’m looking forward to that.

This is the day of reckoning for poor Pigeon Falls. Today the old lady/witch comes to collect her two cows, her wagon, her two horses and $10,000. At this moment after all the money collected yesterday has been counted Mrs. Trumble has announced that they are have $8451.33. Not quiet $10,000.
But it is morning and they are hoping more will come in this afternoon.
If they don’t reach $10,000 they hope the old lady/gypsy will take whatever they do have and send them back to 2009. The general feeling is that she won’t.
But then there is Eugene. The problem is that nobody has even seen Eugene since the old lady/witch announced she would take him instead of the money. He has literally disappeared. A number of people wanted to beg him to save the town. There was even some fear some might try to force him to offer to go “ of his own free will”. But he hasn’t been available for begging or forcing, There just has been no Eugene.
As the time for her to arrive gets closer a little girl has brought in her piggy bank and two unnamed business people brought in money they were holding back in the hope that the total would be raised without them.
The total is now $9563.81. But it still isn’t $10,000.
So the governing group is sitting in he town hall waiting and they are depressed.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Christ the King Sunday

Today's Saying
A man can no more diminish God's glory by refusing to worship Him than a lunatic can put out the sun by scribbling the word, 'darkness' on the walls of his cell. ~C.S. Lewis

With the Sunday we end the Liturgical year. It the Sunday of Christ the King. Next Sunday we start a new year and will move from the year B lectionary texts to the year C texts. We will move from Gospels for the most part out of Mark to those out of Luke.
If you attend a liturgical church you might not even notice that it’s the end of the Church year. There will be no special year end ceremonies , no horns blaring, no firecrackers. There will be a proclamation that Jesus is Lord. But it is an important proclamation.
The Gospel text is John 18:33-37.
Here Jesus face Pilate and Pilate asks him straight out “ Are you the King of the Jews?”
Pilate is having a hard time with Jesus. He can’t really find anything wrong with him but if he claims kingship then he can be perceived as a threat .
Jesus answer is not what Pilate expects.
Jesus says his Kingdom is not of this world. He has no earthly armies. He calls forth no battles. His is a new Kingdom breaking in to the world.
For those of us who live in this new Kingdom now, at least in part, this is good news.
Jesus is the King. He has come, as promised to deliver us. He has opened for us a new world filled with new possibilities.
He has given us the power to forgive. The power to rise above our hateful nature.
He has granted us the power to reach out in love.
He has changed our lives forever.
Christ is King and this is the Sunday that we are reminded that we have heard his voice and responded to his truth.
We stand partially in the coming Kingdom and partially in the old.
But for us Jesus is King and this is Christ the King Sunday.
A wonderful way for the Church year to end.
Jesus is Lord. Jesus is Lord indeed.

Pastor Joan is preparing what she prays will be her last sermon before returning to 2009. Here is part of that sermon.
Today the Church year ends and perhaps we will begin the next one back in 2009. But if we do or if we don’t one thing will remain true. Jesus Christ is King.
He is our King.
He is our Savior.
He is our God.
He is there in the good times and the bad.
He never abandons us.
But we owe Him our allegiance.
Sometimes we forget that.
We are so happy that Christ is there for us that we forget we are called to follow Him.
Sometimes we get so caught up in how He serves us we forget we are called to serve Him in the world by serving others.
Christ the King Sunday reminds us that Jesus is Lord.
He is more than some nice old God who pulls us out of the ditches of life.
He expects us to be his Body the Church in this world.
That is quiet an expectation.
It is hard to live the way Jesus wants us too. It is hard to give ourselves in the serving of others.
But we are His people. This is what we are called to do.
It is Christ the King Sunday and Jesus is Lord.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Raven's Challenge 90

Today's Saying

From the bitterness of disease man learns the sweetness of health. ~Catalan Proverb

Bathroom And Bedroom are my World

This morning Pastor Joan posted a sign on Nancy’s bulletin board which has become the community information center for Pigeon Falls. She called on everybody to go through their house and put all the money they had in an envelope with the amount and their name on it. Then in the morning bring it to Church with them . The Pastor or Priest would collect them all and bring them to Mrs. Trumble. Those that don’t go to Church can bring the envelope to Mrs. Trumble at the town hall in the afternoon. Pastor Joan is hoping that there will be enough gathered to pay what the old woman/witch wants. Even if they fall somewhat short she might see how everybody pulled together and send us home anyway. At least that is what they are hoping.
The mood in town moves back and forth between depression and hope.
Then of course there is the wild card. There is Eugene

Friday, November 20, 2009

Friday with Fourteen

Today's Saying

It is easy to get a thousand prescriptions but hard to get one single remedy. ~Chinese Proverb

Click HERE to get to my 55s

What you are about to read leans on the truth and bends it ever so little . But in the process every Friday you will catch a glimpse of me.And I save the cost of a psychiatrist.

1. New medication seems to be helping as breathing is much easier . ( Stems from having a good lung Doctor)
2. I have to live for at least two more years. ( Stems from that’s when my burial insurance kicks in)
3. Last Saturday there was a knife fight behind the storage facilities across from our house. ( Stems from a desire for revenge)
4. It was a real shock to see the yellow police tape across from the house. ( Stems from watching too many Crime shows)
5. I am now intaking much more fluid, coffee, juice, soda, and water. ( Stems from directions from Primary Care Doctor)
6. Have begun reducing intake of new super pill ( Stems from Lung Doctor’s instructions.)
7. Finally felt well enough to ride to basement and start collecting stuff for E-Bay. ( Stems from a need to get it done)
8. Am now walking on treadmill for six minutes every day. ( Stems from Doctor’s belief it will help my breathing)
9. Am also doing exercises to strengthen chest muscles. ( Stems from same Doctor)
10. Now I hurt everywhere . ( Stems from the exercises)
11. Everyday I hurry to write Pigeon Falls. ( Stems from my desire to find out what happens next. Perhaps I need a plan.)
12. I am now on an eat more diet. ( Stems from my Doctor’s desire for me to gain weight)
13. The stabbing and crime tape reminded me of the murder across the street from the parsonage in Crystal Falls. ( Stems from trying to forget that event)
14. Short or long term I am thankful for the improvement in breathing I’ve seen this week. ( Stems from just feeling better)

The best one could say of the people of Pigeon Falls is that they were disappointed. They had hoped to be back in 2009 by today or tomorrow but now nothing could happen until Monday or Tuesday. Then there was the horrible possibility that they couldn’t raise the money the old lady/witch wanted. Eino was giving the wagon and the horses and Jon Bergall was giving the cows so that was no problem. Kivi’s Grain and Feed was giving the four bags of seed as specified. That left only the money.
Mrs. Trumble began immediately trying to raise the $10,000. She got all of Winl’s and Kivi’s cash on hand which together came to a little over $200o. She put in the entire $630 that was in the town treasury. Nancy threw in $734. Jack provided a little over $ 600. With all of that plus bits and pieces here and there she had accumulated a little over $ 5000. But she didn’t have any clue as to where the rest would come from.
The leadership group met and brainstormed.
Suggestions :
Rob the bank in Marquette. They would be back in 2009 before they could get caught.
Rob the payroll train.
Sell the local mine.
Sell the dairy.
The group was against becoming robbers and the other two couldn’t be done in time.
But there was Eugene.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Quilly 37

Today's Saying

The biggest problem in the world
Could have been solved when it was small.
~Witter Bynner

It is time to share with you another of my favorite blogs.

Alice's Restaurant

This is one great blog. Every day there is a new picture with a clever caption and then there are the house specials. They are listed on the side. All kinds of things from recipes to stories. And for dessert the world's greatest history teller Mr. All introduces us to the history of Kings.
Give it a look. Scroll down and sample the wares.

The old lady/gypsy came as promised yesterday and gave the town her terms for removing the curse which she said was a very very hard curse to remove. She wants a new livery wagon, four sacks of specified seed, two horses, two cows and $10,000 . Mrs. Trumble had a hard time keeping Eino silent at that point. His shins must be black and blue from the number of times she kicked him under the table.
After the initial shock Mrs. Trumble said they would try to meet her demands but $10,000 is a lot of money. The lottery that gave Mrs. Trumble money for the town didn’t exist yet and the town treasury in this age had very little in it.
The old lady/witch looked at the sad group and said “ I would take one other thing instead of the money. I like Eugene . If he consents of his own free will to stay with me I will forget the money part and lift the curse. I really need a man to help out around the house. I will return on Monday and you can give me your answer then.
She disappeared and the group sat in shocked silence.

It is a good thing I auto-posted all of today's material because I had a horrible night last night. If you can catch something off the internet then I have what Quilly had. I spent all night either in the bathroom or heaving in the bucket by the bed. Here it is 2:30 and I am just getting to the computer. I feel like a wet dishrag. The only good news is my breathing held steady through it all.


Wednesday, November 18, 2009

A Story

Today's Saying

The story I am writing exists, written in absolutely perfect fashion, some place, in the air. All I must do is find it, and copy it. ~Jules Renard

An event story.
That is a story based on an event .
But it is not a story of that event but a story the event suggested.
The other day my daughter was coming home from work and suddenly needed to make a quick rest stop.
She stopped at McDonalds and rushed into the rest room.
When she came out she felt guilty so she bought two little apple pies to pay for her use of the facilities.
When she told us this on coming home. This story formed in my mind.
It was, however, not about guilt.

Here is the story:
June Oliver , CEO of the Multi-Banks Corporation was on her way home from an exhausting day doing whatever it is that big name CEOs do. When suddenly she realized she needed a rest stop. She had Melvin, her chauffeur stop the Limousine at the only available place.
She rushed in to TRGHP ( The Really Great Hamburger Place) and headed for the rest room. But the rest room was locked.
She signaled the clerk to open the door and he said” Company policy requires a purchase before using the rest room.”
She almost screamed her response “ But I just need to use the rest room.”
“Company policy and state law requires a restroom for customers but you aren’t a customer until you make a purchase. Buy two pies they are on sale for $1.00 today.” the clerk responded.
“Look buddy”, she said,” I have to go the bathroom . I am going to go to the bathroom.”
“ Not here your not without a purchase” he replied.
“Oh! Yes I am”, she said “ Where do you want the puddle?”
At that the bathroom door flew open and she ran in.

The McDonald pies were very good .
My breathing is a bit better and I may start doing some visiting of blogs.

Chief Ican and Eugene returned late yesterday afternoon. They brought good news and bad . The old lady/witch was willing and able to reverse the curse . That was the good news. The bad news is that it was a hard curse to reverse and would cost the town considerable.
The old lady/Gypsy was going to come this afternoon to meet with the group and lay down her terms.
Eino said “ Your not going to let her rip us off are you.”
Mrs. Trumble responded ., “ Eino if you say one word to get in the way of these negotiations we will knock you down and tape your mouth shut. Do you want to wake up tomorrow having breakfast with cave men? She can have anything she wants if it gets us back to 2009.”
The rest of the group sided with Mrs. Trumble.
Eino shook his head and muttered “it’s not rational .It’s just not rational.”
The group ignored him.
It wasn’t long before the entire town had heard of the progress. This morning there is an anticipation that soon it will all be over. Soon they will return to 2009.
Nancy is even giving away free coffee.
Everyone is waiting for the old lady/witch to come and give her terms. She will certainly get what she wants as long as it isn’t somebody’s first born. Don’t witches sometimes want the first born?

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

More Thoughts Still Rambling

Today's Saying
I wish I was a glow worm,
A glow worm's never glum.
'Cos how can you be grumpy
When the sun shines out your bum!
~Author Unknown

Rambling Thoughts Again

Rambling Thought One
I didn't mean yesterday to imply that I expected to die soon. I expect to live for sometime yet.
The problem is not dying but blogging. Between the dizziness that keeps me from walking to the computer room and the difficulty keeping my eyes open because of the new medication I have less time when I can blog and know what I’m doing. Thus I have made some choices.
To begin with I am putting all the effort into keeping the blog as is that means no time left for visiting and everything has to be auto posted to be sure it will get done.
If it gets worse the dragons go first .
But it could get better.

Rambling Thought Two
Breathing has shown some slight improvement.

Rambling Thought Three
Perhaps, instead of calling this random thoughts I should have called it blogging in the fog.

Rambling Thought Four
Thanks for all the nice comments you left yesterday. I appreciate all your prayers and your attempts to cheer me up.
Hopefully I will stop with the random thoughts and get back to real blogging tomorrow.

Chief Ican and Eugene still haven’t returned.
They were expected back this morning. The town is beginning to worry.
Mrs. Pemberthy told Nancy that the old woman probably turned them into frogs or something.
Mrs. Trumble is reminding people that they are involved in negotiating the sending back of Pigeon Falls and that might take some time. Eugene is not a great negotiator.
Tommy UK now thinks he should have gone with them because then he could have zapped them back instead they have to come down that very difficult trail. They might even have gotten lost.
Mrs. Trumble says that they just have to trust that Chief Ican knows what he is doing. But then it isn’t the Chief they are worried about it’s Eugene.
Pastor Joan pointed out that they had done everything the driblet expected of them. They just have to hope it was enough. She further suggested a little prayer wouldn’t hurt.
So the town waits expectantly for the two of them to return. It feels like children waiting for Santa to come.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Rambling thoughts

Today's Saying

Everyone who is born holds dual citizenship, in the kingdom of the well and in the kingdom of the sick. Although we all prefer to use only the good passport, sooner or later each of us is obliged, at least for a spell, to identify ourselves as citizens of that other place. ~Susan Sontag,

Monday is a good day to just pour out some rambling thoughts.

Rambling thought one.
I went to see my lung specialist last Wednesday and got the bad news I was anticipating. My lungs are deteriorating at a much faster rate than we had originally expected. They now have half of the capacity they had six months ago. We are trying some new powerful medicine to see if we can slow down or stop the deterioration.

Rambling thought two.
If we can’t slow down the rate. Very shortly we will close up the dragon’s blog and ask them to leave. They get on my nerves.
Shortly after that I will quit doing both Quilly and Raven’s words.
Then I will ask Thom to take over Portrait of Words.
I will try to keep up Pigeon Falls until January. Then it may slide into the mist from which it came so long ago.
I will be doing less visiting of other blogs.

Rambling thought three
I don’t want you to think I’m whining. A little over four years ago my family gathered in Marquette waiting for me to die. Since then I have had four very wonderful years for which I am very thankful. This blog and all the bloggers I have met through it have added much to that time.

Rambling Thought Four
I will begin identifying my auto-posts with this symbol.
Chief Ican and Eugene went up the trail to the old lady/gypsy’s house this morning. The group is hopeful that they will be back tomorrow with good news. They even dare to hope that sometime this week they will be back in 2009.
Henri Yelland returned this morning on the milk train. He went to Marquette because he wanted to meet his great great grandfather , Richard Yelland. He had known that he probably shouldn’t do it but he had heard the family stories and seen the couple of grainy pictures they had of him and he just wanted to meet him. Henri had a good cover story. Richard’s older brother Alfred Yelland had settled in New York and had a son about his age named Henri. He would claim to be that Henri coming for a visit. He was sure he knew enough of the family history to pull it off.
And the visit went very well. He saw the great mine where his great great grandfather was a shift boss and the boarding house his great great grandmother ran. He met his great grandfather who was four and spent some time playing with him. They were wonderful, kind people.
Much too soon he found himself on the train back to Pigeon Falls. It was then that he remembered visiting his great grandfather in the hospital as he was dying. His great grandfather looked at him and said “ I remember your playing with me when I was just a little kid. “
At that time he thought the remark made no sense but now?

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Almost Advent

Today's Saying

It wasn't raining when Noah built the ark. ~Howard Ruff

This Sunday is one Sunday away from the end of the Liturgical Church Year so the people who put together the common lectionary have chosen to give us a wake up text from the thirteenth chapter of Mark which is often called the little apocalypse.
In this text Jesus’ Disciples want to know when the end will come. They want to know what the sign will be when the Kingdom of God fully breaks in.
So Jesus give them some signs.
At the end times people will come claiming to be Jesus and will lead people astray.
There will be wars and rumors of wars.
There will be earthquakes and famines.
And these are the birth pains of the Kingdom.
When I was a kid I went to a rural school. Twice a year the fire alarm was sounded and we were all taken to our proper places. Some of us got to ride down the enclosed escape slide on the side of the building. It was fun.
But its intention was to make us aware of the warning sign, the alarm, and wghat to do when we heard it. Then our life would depend on it.
Jesus gives us a sign. The sign is like reading the paper or watching TV. There are fake Messiahs, earthquakes, famines, wars, and rumors of wars yet to come.
Does this mean we are living in the end times?
Not necessarily. Just because the alarm went off doesn’t mean the building is burning.
But it is a call to the Christian to be ready to be kinder, more loving, to share Jesus with as many people as possible.
Being ready is a good thing.
See the signs.
Live the life.

It is Pastor Joan’s third week preaching in the old towering pulpit in the old wood church. She has decided to preach on the text for the Sunday. Here is part of that sermon:
“ Jesus said at the end there will be wars and rumors of wars. There will be famines and earthquakes.
If we had always lived here in this time we would think the end times are a long way off.
We live in a little valley of peace. There are no wars and no rumors of wars around us. Food is plentiful. There have been no earthquakes. We can relax the signs don’t apply.
The Civil War is over from now on only peace and prosperity for the nation.
If you lived in New York you might have hear some rumblings from Europe where nations arming.
You might also have heard of a famine or two and an earthquake. But none of it touching you.
You knew the signs didn’t involve you.
But we haven’t always been here. We lived in the age of Television and all the wars, famies, and earthquakes have flowed into our living rooms. The signs were all around us.
Jesus calls on us to see those signs and get ready.
It is time for us to live the faith.
I tell you this this morning because I believe we will get back to 2009. I believe that.
I believe that after this rest in this peaceful valley we are called to get ready.
Christ is coming again.
He is.”

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Six Words

Today's Saying

If it takes a lot of words to say what you have in mind, give it more thought. ~Dennis Roth

My scooter needs a good charge

Chief Ican is holding on to Eugene while he sobers up. Eugene is not very happy about the entire incident and has reached the I’m going to sue you level of sobriety. So Chief Ican reminds him that he wouldn’t be in this mess if the town hadn’t insulted the old Gypsy fellow and his daughter . ( The idea being that if you tell a lie often enough and in enough forms it will be believed. Ask any politician)
But this is Saturday and while we wait everybody in town is looking at the 1890 Sears catalogue that the train dropped off bundles of yesterday. They can’t believe what it contains and the prices.
There is a Singer Model 12 New Family treadle sewing machine for $9.00 and other fancy sdewing machines, all tredle of course, costing between fifteen and twenty dollars. It’s like a different world.
There is a beautiful , ornate pump organ for just $9.89. The one at Last Lutheran in this age looks just like it. It also had all the parts you needed to fix the organ if it broke.
The catalogue has the first of the Sears Model Homes. It was a two story, no porch, for $762. The kit came with everything cut and fitted and with full instructions. An outhouse kit was extra.
It had saddles, wagons and carriages and all kinds of horse harnesses.
There were four pages of general medicines, two page of homeopathic medicines, and one page of patent medicines. They could cure everything.
There were seven pages of tea kettles. People in those days must have loved their tea. You could get tea kettles in iron, nickel , copper, and porcelain, in an entire variety of shapes.
The catalogue was the best thing they had in this era.*

* Please note all these item were found in Sears catalogues between 1890-1899 but not necessarily in the 1890 catalogue.

One more note. I am on new medication which prevented my sleeping last night. I am so tired that I doubt I will do any blog visiting today.