Off the road… Wilmington… Aging… Swine Flu… Obama’s first 100 days…

April 28, 2009 bsmith101
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Well, we  are just getting back in from our weekend little road trip.  The weather was beautiful all the way down and back…90’s, baby…and felt like it.

One of my nephews preached his first sermon in his very own church this past Sunday…and we all went down to be with him for his opening ceremony…a monumental Christian event…in a place where I couldbld040600 see he was much needed.  In Wilmington, DE…which is a much bigger place than I ever expected and has a very sizable amount of  black folk.

While there I could not help but marvel at most of the homes…which were mostly made of stone and brick.  They looked very historic…and I remembered that Delaware was an old State that has a very long and rich history due to George Washington having travelled and stayed there.  And I could see that many of those homes dated back to that period in history…and had been well kept up and cared for through their long history…and still are.

But Wilmington reminded me of  Detroit except for one distinct difference…there were no boarded up houses or boarded up businesses there…as far as I could see.   Very much to the contrary was it to the situation in Detroit…in which as I stated in an earlier blogs on Detroit…that  every other building and house was boarded up in Detroit  due to foreclosures, down-sizing and massive  job losses.   Detroit was consumed by boarded up and vacated buildings and homes due to the shutting down of  many of the factory jobs of  its chief industry and job producers…the Big 3…the motor industry.  And it looked every bit of  it.

But contrary to Detroit…it seemed to me that Wilmington’s future was bright…the city that sits back off of  I-95…but not too far off…just far enough off the main North Eastern throughway so you can’t see it.

But who knew that was really back there…down that short stretch of road where the signs lead you over to.

Little has been and is ever said about Wilmington, DE.   But then I remembered as I glanced across and looked at the old beautiful mansions that our Vice President, Joe Biden and his family,  also lives here…in that quiet little place which isn’t really all that little…and certainly not little at all compared to where I come from.  Just 20 minutes South of Philly and not far from Baltimore.  Wilmington really struck me as a great place to invest in…if you could find property to   buy.

It has all the pluses… Wilmington does… including sitting on the banks of the Delaware River...you do remember that great picture they had in your history book of  Washington standing on that boat looking very regal and General-like as he crossed the Delaware.  It is funny the things you will remember years later from when you were a little grade school child sitting in various classes at school…of which none of  it meant anything to you at the time.  You just had to rememorize it because of the test tomorrow…and that was the only reason you placed it somewhere in your memory bank.   Who knew 20-30-40-50-60 years later you would still be able to pull up and access that information stored somewhere in your brain?

This is why education is so important.  Nothing in school ever seemed important to me.  Teachers failed to be able to show the true value of why you should learn something.  For some reason they cannot link anything that you do in school with real living.  And then later in life you find out that it was all relevant to your everyday living.  Like learning how to get up and go to school.   Relevance: Getting up and going to work.   If you never learned how to get up and get out to school on time you will certainly have problems at getting up and getting out to work on time.   Therefore, it is relevant to real everyday living.

(2) Math…this is a big one (well, learning to get up and go to school was big too…)   Relevance: Being able to keep track of your money…count your change…add up your groceries before you get into line…monitor your daily spending and align it with your budget and your pay check etc…   I told you it was big.   But for some reason teachers cannot appropriately inform students of the real value of learning math.  There is not one kid…or child…or teen in school who doesn’t like money…and if  they realized that math had something to do with money there would not be one student failing math.

Well, I guess you can tell that I am really tired from our trip to Delaware the place where George…oh, never mind…I’ve already said it…how he crossed that river and made history right there in that little…well…not so little town.   Yeah…I am real tired.

When we were through in Delaware…my son and I hit Philly.   I could not get so close and not drop by and visit with the true matriarch of our family…my mother’s Aunt Kate.

Having talked often with Aunt Kate…it was not hard for me to tell when I first realized her mind was not jp2006_0003624-1as sharp as usual.  You used to could say a name and she filled in all the blanks.  I loved talking with her…and each time I learned more and more about our family.  Her mother…was my grand-mother’s mother.  She was a woman who had somehow ended up owning a very large portion of  land…and I do mean very large.  It ran along the shores and back a ways off from Lake Okeechobee, the 2nd largest lake in the United States…2nd only to Lake Michigan.

I found this out once during one of our last annual summer trips to Florida…when suddenly my mother began crying saying-

“You see this land it all belonged to my grand-mother.”

I was surprised…as my mother rarely became so emotional over such things…and certainly not out of the blue as she had that day.  As many times as we had passed through that little town and across that bridge heading over to where I was born and where my grand-mother at the time stilled lived…my mother had never before said anything regarding the size or proportion of any of  that land.

That day she told us that as far as we could see and as far back as we had just come…how it had all belonged to our  great grand-mother.  I had not realized until that moment that seeing where this town now absorbed all of what had been our family’s property…nor had I  realized that seeing it as we drove pass it sadden my mother so until that day…as she sobbed loudly over her grand-mother’s property.  She had spoken of  it before but never had I any idea of  the vast amount of property that was involved.

It is from that moment that I started paying more attention to those programs that I saw on PBS about black families going back through city records and trying to regain property which had been stolen away from their families during the mid-40’s through the 50’s…which included very large farm lands…by various people in those towns who simply just re-wrote the deeds to those black people’s property…giving themselves ownership over it without even bothering to purchase the property from any of the black families.

Very little has ever been said about my great grand-mother except for how extremely religious of a woman she was.  But Aunt Kate had began sharing with me more about her.  She told me of her giving nature…and how she had owned a restaurant.   She told me that there had been people during the course of my great grand-mother’s restaurant business who could not afford to pay for the food…but she fed them anyway.  She had even opened up the doors to her home and raised a child or 2 which was not her own…because they had been homeless.

“One little boy,” Aunt Kate said was a friend of one her brothers…whom they had found out that when they thought he would leave to go home…that he was actually sleeping down under their house.

Aunt Kate said, “Well, mother, wasn’t going to let him stay down there.”

She raised him along with her own children.  He became another brother to our Aunt Kate and my grand-mother along with their other siblings.

Back in those days the houses in those areas of Florida were built raised up off the ground and sat upon concrete blocks.   This was how they built all the houses back then down in Florida…raised up off the ground because of flooding.   If the waters came up over the banks of Lake Okeechobee…it was hoped that they would not rise above the height of the concrete blocks.

Because Zora Neale Huston stayed in my great grand-mother’s area once upon a time…in fact, her book “Their Eyes Were Watching God”…takes place in a little town sitting on Lake Okeechobee.  Imagine my great grand-mother being the great land Baroness that she was…and owner of  the black folk’s only restaurant in that town…and just based on how folks lived down there…and still do…I imagine that they…my great grand-mother and Zora Neale Hurston may have known each another.  Nobody lives in any of those little towns without knowing everybody…so much so…that they all become very much like family…caring and knowing everything about everyone and everything about them.

But Aunt Kate now being the last of all her sibling…out of 10 of them…was my source for much family history…which seemed to just pour out of her.  I never had to ask any questions of her or try to coax her into sharing it with me…very unlike my own grand mother…who always seemed suspicious if  you asked anything about  our family history.  Why I do not know…but it was something that I accepted thinking that perhaps there was something which I should not know.

42-15293997But upon seeing Aunt Kate for the first time in years…I was somewhat surprised.  She was much smaller now…though she had never been a big woman as she always kept herself up, as they say…meaning she always kept herself  looking good and in good condition.  But she wasn’t looking so good yesterday…most of her hair had thinned out…and she had this large black…what looked like smut smudge straight across her forehead.  She had on no shoes or slippers on…of which I had never seen her walk  around barefooted before…as Aunt Kate was quite prime and proper.    And her feet were terribly ashy…meaning…well…you can look that one up…as I do not want nor wish to continue talking about my aunt in such a way.

But it was her mind…the thing most recently I had noticed in the last few phone calls we had had…her mind was slipping.   She was not getting lost…but she had started forgetting things…and who such and such was…when she had always been so sharp about such things.

Aunt Kate was now in her 90’s…and though throughout all of these years age had somehow managed to not show up on her…yesterday was different.  She seemed older than her 90 in fact…and she was now walking with a cane.  That strong little woman was now…an aged shadow of  what she had been…and though I smiled and was happy to see and talk with her and my cousins…it was hard for me not to notice the vast difference in our Aunt Kate yesterday…from the Aunt Kate I had last seen just about 3 years ago and throughout all the prior years.

I often think of  the little church mothers in our church…woman who proudly proclaim their ages with bcp018-29such glee…because none of them looks anything near the age that they truly are.  They are strong and fit…able to get onto and off  buses…walk around their blocks…run errands on their own.   There is a distinct difference between them and women who are not in the church.  And it is very recognizable.

Though her mother had been an extremely religious woman…Aunt Kate may have been…and may still be quasi-religious.   Until a few years ago…Atlantic City had become her friend.  She had gotten bitten by that bug…called gambling.   And if someone had not stolen some money from her…she still might be going…as it had become a weekly habit for her.

I really do believe that there is something about being in the church…and living a life separate from the ways of the world that will make a difference in your life…as witnessed by the many mothers who are in various churches around the world.  There is just something about trusting and living your life as God intends you to live it…that will make a difference.

Yes, I am tired…but I am so thankful that God gave me the opportunity yesterday to finally go and visit with my very kind and loving Aunt Kate…through all the years this has never changed about her.  I suspect that it comes from her mother.

There is little wonder that Obama’s approval rating for his first 100 days has been and is high…as he is actively pursuing to achieve exactly what he went into the White House knowing what he had and needed…and said he would do.  Handle the business of the American people…and try to undo and dark mark the Bush Administration had put upon this country.  And thus far…as my father would say…he has been doing  just fine.  But what I really like is the fact that the dynamic duo which we put into the White House are both getting high marks.

I always knew that Michelle was going to show herself to be simply wonderful as both First-Mom, First Lady…friend and confident to the man that sits in the top seat and wears the heavy crown…or in this country…heavy hat…President Barack Obama.

I really like reading all this good press about them.  He was media darling prior to entering the race…media darling after entering the race…and still media darling after having won the race.

I like people who are consistent…don’t you?

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/arianna-huffington/obamas-first-100-days-the_b_191831.html

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/04/27/the-secret-to-michelle-ob_n_191677.html

Mexico Swine FluAs you know…I do not watch much television.  But often while sitting around in a hotel room…I find little  else to do.  So, this is how I happened to hear about the ‘Swine Flu.” As far as I can tell…it is very much like most of the other flu’s…causing diarrhea, vomiting, fevers, headaches…etc.   But thus far it has killed 81 people in New Mexico…and a series of people…up to 40 cases have been diagnosed here in other parts of the United States.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/8021384.stm

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/8022437.stm

To protect yourself they say that you should continuously wash your hands…and when out in public keep your hands out of your mouth and eyes.

http://www.cnn.com/2009/HEALTH/04/27/swine.flu/index.html

http://www.floridatoday.com/article/20090427/BREAKINGNEWS/90427003&referrer=FRONTPAGECAROUSEL

http://www.webmd.com/cold-and-flu/news/20090428/swine-flu-and-travel-what-should-you-do

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/med_swine_flu

http://www.trinidadexpress.com/index.pl/article_news?id=161469997

http://cosmos.bcst.yahoo.com/up/player/popup/?rn=3906861&cl=13188442&ch=4226723&src=news

http://news.yahoo.com/nphotos/Swine-Flu/ss/events/hl/042409swineflu#photoViewer=/090428/ids_photos_wl/r3827649806.jpg

Could not resist this story…CLICK the LINK BELOW to read it and see the video.

Pastor Bruce Cadle of New Hope Church delivers the first sermon in a three-part It is about a southern preacher who believes that having ‘good sex’…or as this pastor puts it “great sex’…is something which the body of Christ should be preaching about.

I know you do not want to hear my opinion on that…because you probably already know it…if you have read any of these blogs at all with any degree or level of understanding.

But it just goes to prove…just how overboard this whole sexual revolution has become.   And I am not shocked…as it seems to me that there are some in the church…or seemingly of the church…who have great interest in the subject and are doing everything they can to spread that interest.2ab-the-bishop-wifecover

Though, I have to admit that my book, THE BISHOP’S WIFE… certainly touches upon the subject.   It is…I guess important…but not something which should be preached or for that matter…needed to be taught in church…any more than sex education in school.

http://www.floridatoday.com/article/20090427/NEWS01/904250314/1086

Speaking about my book, THE BISHOP’S WIFE…between it and counting down the days to when it is ready for sell…launching my website…blogging…and hitting the road to promote my book…and menopause…it is wonder that I am anything but tired.

Now, I think I am going to get some much more needed sleep, thank you.   Being on the road somehow jp2006_0003862drains me these days.  I love it…but it tires me.   I think it throws my whole internal clock off…as I usually am the one driving through the night…and most of the day.  But I love the road, baby.   Ain\’t nothing like it.

So, if you will excuse me…I am going to rest now.   Good-night.

God bless…

Thank you for reading this blog…and  my others.  Please be sure to continue to share this blog site with your family, co-workers and all your friends

\”pass it on…\” http://www.bsmith101.wordpress.com ©2009


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Entry Filed under: Barack Obama,Church of God in Christ,Church people,Estate Matters,Foreclosures,Giving unto others,health,job losses,Joseph Biden,Michelle Obama,Mortgage Crisis,Obama,politics,property dilemas,recession,self-publishing,Sexual Revolution,Stong Women,The Bishop's Wife,Uncategorized,Women in Politics

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