Remembering Clarence Henson

Published 12:39 pm Wednesday, July 12, 2023

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I joined Clarence Henson’s class at Tryon School in the 6th grade. We could not understand how Clarence could be John Earl’s Uncle when they were the same age!

When Miss Baldwin said that Clarence had not turned in his paper on the Monroe Doctrine, and Clarence was sure that he had, Clarence transferred to Stearns School and graduated from there.

When I returned to Tryon after retiring early, I found Clarence working for the Town of Tryon. Later, I found Clarence in the Medical Building of White Oak on my weekly visits. Now, Clarence has joined his extended family “in God’s House,” as our granddaughter said of her grandfather.

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Son Thomas contracted Covid, so we did not get to celebrate his and Fran’s birthdays at a party planned in Asheville.  Thomas has “turned the corner,” as he put it, and is back at work. Fran was able to attend the party I set up for her here at White Oak, but Thomas was not, because he had to work Sunday because a dining room worker fell and broke his leg!

I believe it was the poet Robert Burns who wrote something about “the best laid plans . . .” As an optimist, I always expect my plans to come to fruition in due course; as a pessimist, Fran expects the opposite. We both are wrong about equally as often, I seems to me.

I dutifully took several pictures with my cellphone, but I have forgotten how to get them off the phone and into my computer. Maybe I can learn how in cellphone class Friday . . .

We got Fran a new computer finally (she resisted); now our guru has both new and old ones to migrate stuff over. He told us he is retiring! How do we get someone to serve us who is young enough that we won’t outlive their retirement? Doctors are especially prone to check out early!  

Even our daughter gave up her Interior Design business much earlier than planned because she was spending so much time on government paper work that she could not enjoy her business anymore! I loved my work designing airplanes, but I retired early because the company was continually taking away benefits . . .

Fran has completed her cross-stitching for our 2023 Christmas card. When I put it into our Christmas card, we did not like the lettering, so she re-did it. Some days she takes out about as much as she puts in; almost as easy for her as for me to do it in the computer!

She wanted the fabric to show up less, so I added light. She was not happy with that result, so I tried something different. Between the two of us, with pros and cons, we finally get the card like we want it and then we can print and mail them. I also do an on-line version and email another 300 or so.

Fran wants to send only printed cards that recipients can hold in their hands and read, but I justify email by observing that we do not have US mail addresses for more than half of our friends nationwide. We do have several months to get the printed version perfected; we will doubtless make further changes as the months go by. 

Whether you receive an email or a printed card, you will now understand the months of effort that goes into what you receive. But believe me, it is not a fight, but a labor of love, this collaboration to achieve a “perfect” card for our priceless friends.