Another Christmas

Published 8:00 am Friday, December 16, 2022

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It appears that I have been given another Christmas! I have a lot of things wrong with me, but my cardiologist is optimistic (makes next appointments a year hence!) and my friend Father Walter Bryan says I must EXPECT to be here—so, OK, I expect to enjoy another Christmas. We are in process of printing and getting our Christmas cards into the mail.

I arranged with Richard Hall to let me into the High School auditorium and to raise the lid on the Steinway when he brings it out of its protective storage box so I can tune it for TubaChristmas®, Community Chorus and the High School Chorus. That lid has become too heavy for me to raise it with my limited arm strength! Gotta get back to exercising regularly per my cardiologist’s orders!

I have always enjoyed TubaChristmas® performances for their unique sound—only the tubas and baritones! Former Mayor of Columbus, Kathleen McMillian, observed in her introduction that “If this won’t get you into the Christmas spirit, nothing will!”

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We attended the Community Chorus performance again this year; I sent a Letter to the Editor raving about it! It was dedicated to the late Jan Impey, who preceded Pam McNeil as their accompanist. The former Columbus Lions Club engaged Jan to play piano at our annual luncheon for our Visually Impaired Persons (VIPs). Like Pam, Jan could play in any style, switching immediately to the new genre. 

I knew who Jack Lingafelter was, but unfortunately never met him. As my late Air Force buddy, Bob Isenhart, used to say, after reading my column, he wished he had known the subject. I probably would have sought Jack out if I had known he was a fellow engineer. We could have found plenty to talk about!                       

When I went to work in a local grocery store and learned how economical potatoes were (7 cents a pound), I thought this proves that God loves poor people, because He made potatoes so good! Any way you fix them! My fellow TDB columnist David Crocker extols their virtues this week. When I eat a baked potato, I always eat the peeling, as my Mother taught me that therein lies much of its food value. 

 Some years ago, I was the only person at the Courthouse to welcome the motorcycles to Columbus in their annual Toy Run. I called the TDB and friend Bob Balm and took them to task for NOT covering the event. It has had good coverage ever since, including this year’s thunderous arrival of several hundred motorcycles laden with Christmas toys.

And yes, we “Remembered Pearl Harbor”. . . A “Day of Infamy” (FDR) that many of us will always remember—where we were and what we were doing when we got the news of the Japanese attack on Hawaii’s Pearl Harbor. I was visiting my 4th-grade teacher, my Mother’s friend, Miss Thelma Mills. 

Jen Pace Dickenson reviews several related books for us. I will have to arrange to meet Jen at the Polk County Library, my fellow columnist as it were. Jen is the ever-faithful book reviewer for the Library.     

With one Christmas party down and one to go, I am happy to report that I have at long last been able to get my weight down below 200 pounds! This has been accomplished by consciously doing “push aways” . . . And no dessert except for bowls of fruit!

Our White Oak Christmas party at the Harmon Field Cabin was a delight: great food while surrounded by beautiful, white-themed decorations lovingly put up and all around by our dedicated staff members.

The WNC Air Museum party was held at the Bay Breeze Restaurant in Hendersonville. We were transported each way by our considerate fellow members, so I did not have to drive up or down the mountain in the dark. 

We hope you also enjoy a Christmas season with family and friends.