Saluda News & Notations: Escaping home confinement

Published 3:56 pm Thursday, December 14, 2017

Aren’t we enlarged

by the scale of what we’re able

to desire? Everything,

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the choir insists,

might flame;

inside these wrappings

burns another, brighter life,

quickened, now,

by song: hear how

it cascades, in overlapping,

lapidary waves of praise? Still time.

Still time to change.

~ Mark Doty, excerpt from “Messiah (Christmas Portions)”

Being snowed in for longer than a day or two tends to get old, but every time we get heaping helpings of the white stuff, I can pretty much plan on ‘doing time.’ Like it or not. I may very well be a homebody sort, but it’s good to know I can leave when I want to!

After a good bit of snow melting and clearing, the Turtle was able to back carefully out of the driveway, River Dog in a red sweater riding shotgun, and we made our getaway all the way to the post office. By the next day, and more melt, we bailed to Hendersonville to run errands. Pikachu Cat hid. No way she was riding anywhere! No way she was wearing a red sweater, either. (I tried, yes, I did.)

While in the grocery store, picking up a few odds and ends, I noticed something. Everybody else was glad to get out too, and in a glad-to-see-you-too mode even-if-you’re-a-complete-stranger—despite canned Christmas music and slushy parking lot. I admired one woman’s dog who was helping her shop along the aisles, and we ended up comparing dog notes, just like parents do at the ball game. Someone else admitted they were just glad to get out too, heads nodding and bobbing like those dashboard hula dancers.

At the check out, someone else struck up a conversation about their mounds of frozen pizzas, Hungry Man dinners, junk food. I just nodded, hey, go for it! I learned the woman works with her husband in construction, and at the end of the day, that’s what works for her crew at home. A little camaraderie and kindness among strangers, among our community, in our own homes…that’s what it’s all about. Smiles and kindness are free, gifts when shared with others.

Update: Due to winter weather and a lot of snow, the annual Saluda Hometown Christmas (sponsored by Saluda Business Association) is rescheduled for Dec. 15, 6-8 p.m. An ecumenical service will be at Saluda Presbyterian Church on Carolina Street at 8:15 p.m.

Saluda Welcome Table at Saluda Methodist Church will resume Jan. 9.

Saluda Community Land Trust can use your generous holiday donations or volunteer help. Contact SCLT at 828-749-1560 or visit 

Saluda Historic Depot, 32 West Main Street is open Monday- Saturday 10 a.m.- 5 p.m., Sunday 12-4 p.m.; The next Saluda Train Tales is Dec. 16 at 6 p.m. and will be movie night featuring “Polar Express.”

Saluda Police Department and City Hall are collecting unwrapped toys and donations to provide Saluda children-in-need with Christmas. To ‘adopt’ a child or two, stop by City Hall or call Jessica Desiano at 828-749-2581. Donations need to be in by Dec. 18.

The annual Saluda Center Gala has been rescheduled to January.

Saluda United Methodist Church Choir will present “The Longest Night” musical on Dec. 21, 7 p.m.

Saluda School will be closed for the holiday break from Dec. 22 through Jan. 1. Students return to class on Jan. 2. 

A Community Christmas Potluck lunch at Saluda Center will be Dec. 25 at 1:30 p.m. Bring a dish to share.

Happy December birthday to Judy Ward, Holly Wilkes, Theresa Wilkes, Perry Ellwood, Donnie Hunter, Jeff Bradley, Preston Mintz, Carolyn Morgan, Susan Casey, Jeff Jenkins, Nikki Ammerman, Cas Haskell, Mary O. Ratcliffe, Laura Fields, Lord Blanton, Beth Brand, Jim Carson and Tom DeKay.

Thank you, dear readers, for reading this column. You can contact me at, 828-749-1153, or