I felt an upwelling of nostalgia for dear River Falls when 21 inches of snow fell on the Washington D.C. area the night before our church choir (I sing bass) was scheduled to put on its big Christmas-season concert―“Amahl and the Night Visitors.” The church was incapable of plowing its parking lot, streets were impassable, the snow stopped everything in town except the esteemed members of Congress―I almost said “those idiots”―who were still mucking around with the health bill. So I longed affectionately for the old fellows who faithfully and competently plow the state highway, then the county roads, then finally the tertiary roads in Pierce County. In 1966 we were renting a farm house on a back road outside R.F., and when the old guy finally came chugging up my driveway with his snowplow I gestured through my kitchen window―coffee percolator in one hand, bottle of whiskey in the other hand. He waved, shook his head, and chugged on. Nothing like that in D.C.
Why are Ronnie and I now on the 17th floor of a retirement community in Arlington? Because our children decreed that we have to be close to one of them―we NEED SUPERVISION, they say. So we go where our son Paul and his family go. Last year he was Senior Re-search Scholar at Stanford, this year he’s Assistant Secretary of Defense and right now he’s sending aid to Haiti.
I haven’t quite mastered the intricacies of of tweeting at people, squawking, or nudging people on the internet. But I’ve finally figured out e-mail. I’d love to hear from anybody UWRF-ish at firstname.lastname@example.org.