December 3, 2008 EditionAlso in this issue...
Party offers reunionDewitt Rowlett
An 80th birthday bash for my uncle, Paul Husky, turned out to be as much a party for me as for the guest of honor.
I suppose my being 64 years old myself has a lot to do with all these nostalgic feelings I have lately, and this gathering enhanced the mood more than I have words to express.
First of all it is always a pleasure to be around my uncle and aunt. They just enjoy life so much, and if you have a laugh in you, my 80-year-old uncle will get it out.
Cousins were there from Indiana, Missouri, Texas and, of course, Arkansas. Most of us were together as small children in the cotton fields, in school and almost every Sunday after church.
Somehow with our busy lives and distance, we have sort of drifted apart and see each other only on special occasions.
When we do get together, though, I still feel that old camaraderie, and it is touching to see the love that is still so apparent in the smiles and hugs.
As the Christmas season approaches, I encourage everyone to get together with your family members this year. I did and my heart is full.
My granddaughter, who is three years old, loves the outdoors more than any child I have ever seen. I sat in my lawn chair and watched her playing on the swing and slide one evening earlier this year when she was spending the night with us.
It was beginning to get dark, and I saw something I have not seen in many years ~ fireflies ~ lightning bugs as we called them back at Possum Trot.
In the 50s, the mosquitoes were not as bad as they are now in the rice-growing areas of Arkansas, the kids could play outside until bed time if their parents would let them.
Now all you folks from the humane society need to stop reading right here because you probably won't like to hear this. Some of the adventurous old boys would chase those little flashing bugs and put them in a jar to see how much light they could really generate.
OK! OK! Hush now. I know it was cruel, but boys will be boys.
I guess I was more of an old softy, well maybe just lazy, but I just liked to watch 'em. That night, I discovered I still like to watch 'em.
I have been here in Vilonia now for two years. All this time I have kind of regretted leaving Jackson County, which was my home for more than 60 years.
As I sat there that evening, I began to appreciate this area. I was actually sitting outside after dark without being attacked by millions of those pesky biting insects.
Lightning bugs flying all around ~ no fireworks display can compare to this beautiful sight. Later as I drifted off to sleep in my mind's eye I could still see them flashing on the ground, in the trees, under the porch ~ whispering to me, "Remember those carefree days of your youth."
And I answered, "Thanks for the memories."
Dewitt Rowlett of Vilonia is a native of Possum Trot Community, five miles west of Swifton. He writes of his life in rural Arkansas and is gaining quite a fan club of people who are of the nostalgic persuasion. Comments can be sent to him through e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.