Remember When: Remembering Amanda Wright and Robert Dedmondt

Published 8:00 am Friday, November 16, 2018

A recent Google Doodle was about Amanda Crowe, who was an Eastern Band Cherokee woodcarver and educator from Cherokee, North Carolina.

Something she said about her work reminded me of our own Robert Dedmondt.

Among his other life skills, Robert had learned the art of wood carving at the John C. Campbell Folk Arts School in Brasstown, North Carolina. Robert told me, as he gave me a little goose he had carved, that “the wood tells me what it wants to be.”

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Robert is probably better remembered as Tryon’s weather observer, as he reported the temperatures and rainfall to the Bulletin each day. He also worked at Missildine’s Drug Store even longer.  

Fran and I treasure our little goose, and it will definitely go with us into our new digs at White Oak.

Speaking of which, my preparations for the big move are not going as well as she’d like.

I am still going to the gym, writing these columns, assembling newsletters, scheduling piano tunings, etc. But I am working on it — in my spare time, of course.

I have already recycled nearly all of my files. College notes, piano tech notes, income tax, original pages from the TDB and Prime Times that contained my columns, hard copies of meeting minutes and countless newsletters that I have created, the journals (read diaries, if you prefer) we have kept over the more than 60 years we’ve been together and raising our kids, and so on . . . 

The milk boxes that the Landrum Ingles piles by their door each day are perfect for carrying these recycles to the transfer station. I have been taking a car full of them there every day or two.

Of course, some of the stuff is being sorted to give to various people and organizations. Our kids don’t want it, and maybe the others don’t either, but they are going to be the ones to dispose of it!

My piano music scores went to Beth Child already, but I have found some more. An architect friend is coming by to get my drawing stuff and some of my engineering books. He is also a member of the Experimental Aircraft Association, and may share some of my technical design books with them.

Speaking of books, we have a whole shelf of books by authors who are our dear friends! And pictures — our walls are covered with similar paintings . . . not to mention the two dozen albums and about two bushels of snapshots. The slides, cassette and VCR tapes have all gone for burial as trash.

I now have a better understanding of the scripture to the effect that we are made of dust and to dust we shall return. I liken our life span to a rainbow, which begins in the dirt and, after a beautiful arc across the sky, ends in the dirt.

We are beginning to glide down that slope by giving up many responsibilities. We are off the board of the Air Museum and we are not standing for re-election to our offices in Lions. I have given up yard work, and Fran is cutting her cooking chores by half.

We started our marriage in an apartment with no garage; we are about to enter into a similar living arrangement. Frank Lloyd Wright believed that building a shelter for the car was a waste of money because cars are designed to live outside.

I always wanted to tell Mr. Wright that I built the garage for me, not just the car. I never enjoyed scraping ice off the windshield, nor getting wet carrying stuff into the house after shopping.