That was a humdinger of a storm last Sunday. As far as rain was concerned it fell a little short of what is needed in the area, but every drop helps this dry land and our local farmers and ranchers. I heard .3 and .4 of an inch from folks in the area. My ground is wet and the tank came up a few inches, but I’m not sure it will be enough to save the trees. I can only hope and pray. We’ll know in another month or so when the trees begin to bud.
The excitement derived from the storm came not from the rain, but from the wind, lightening and the power failure. A persistent beeping sound pulled me from my sleep. I fumbled around in the dark trying to pinpoint the sound. Still half asleep, I managed to walk into the high counter with a thump. That brought me completely awake and I realized that it was really dark in the house. I found the beep and put on the little overhead light, but it was really dull, so I opened the refrigerator door to use that light as a guide. That’s when I noticed that something was really wrong. I quickly shut the fridge door, unplugged the microwave, and went back to bed. Once again a persistent beep dragged me from my bed. I never did find that beep because everything went black. All the little red, white and blue lights that make up our daily “stuff” were dark and silent. I returned to my bed and waited for sunrise. Imagine my surprise when morning brought no power. It looks as if sometime between 2:30 and 3:30 our local power went out. It was not restored until sometime between 11:00 and noon. A lack of electric power is not such a big deal, until you realize everything we do is attached to a cord. Telephones were mostly useless, cell phones were having issues, and it rearranges life’s priorities. Russ and I both went to church unshowered, but not stinky. We met fellow worshipers in the same condition. Some had tossed for the use of the hot water, most had just come. A few quilter ladies reminded me that real quilters shower at night, so they were prepared. I was glad we decided to have church in spite of the dark and cold. Brother Barry preached two services to cover anyone who showed up for either Sunday school or regular church service.
Mondo tells me the rattlesnakes are starting to move around. He says they’re not straying far from the den, but they are coming out and sunning themselves during the day. He showed my science class a few pictures of some of the snakes he’s caught. It’s amazing how primitive that rattle sound is and how immediate our response is to it. The kids had a chance last October to see and hear a live rattlesnake at the Farm Safety Day in San Saba. They thought it was tied with the gun exhibit.
We’ve received our second trunk from the TPWD. The first one contained skulls and scat from local animals, and the second trunk is about water. The Texas Parks and Wildlife people send these trunks out to local schools to assist with the study of our environment. My kids love them, and so do I. Basketball is about over for the athletes and now it is time for spring sports. We have added two new sports, softball and golf. Add this to track, tennis and one act play you now have a logistics issue as well as player issue. This is not an issue big schools face. It is a blessing for our kids, because they can participate in numerous activities. It is a coach’s nightmare because they have to share so many athletes. Plus we have that looming STAAR quickly approaching. Schools all over Texas are struggling with the new readiness standards that want everyone to go to college. I’ll leave that topic because it makes me angry that kids are being forced into academic molds that don’t fit all students.
I have buried my next issue deep into the column. That’s where it needs to be. I debated with myself, but my weaker side won. I teach my students that their Amendment Rights must be protected at all costs, but I also teach them that along with those rights come responsibility. I warn them about posting things on Face Book that could hurt someone or comeback to hurt them. I tell them that just because they don‘t like someone doesn’t mean they have the right to actively seek to hurt them. The rights we have are based on the premise that we do to others what we would want done back. I try diligently to write this column with that in mind. I have some who want local comings and goings, but I have others who call and tell me not to write about them. It’s one of those darned if I do and darned if I don’t deals. I long ago gave up waiting for people to call me and say put this in the paper. So I write about the only thing that directly crosses my path, school and home. I have called several times for someone from the community who knows everyone to step forward and write this column, but I’m still waiting. I don’t mind the time it takes. I enjoy writing about life in our community as it touches mine. I do mind getting the kind of hateful poison pen letter that I received courtesy of a coward who is willing to spew hate, but not courageous enough to put their name to their hate. Since nothing written was worth the paper or stamp used to deliver this piece of trash, please save yourself the time and money. The paper won’t print letters to the editor unless they have a name and address, and I intend to fire file the next unsigned piece of hate mail to its rightful place. It’s not that I think people don’t have the right to express themselves. Praise God we can still do that, but if you feel that strongly about something; sign it and state your objections clearly, without the slanderous and hateful personal adjectives that reduce a coherent piece of writing into junk.
Even though my anonymous letter writer doesn’t like my stories about Glen, many of you get a kick out of his puppy hi-jinks. One of the reasons Glen didn’t make the cut was his inability to stay on task. He is not a very focused puppy. Even when he chases things in the woods, he forgets what he is doing and heads off on another track. He has learned not to cross fences, but that doesn’t mean he won’t forget and do the ugly. We are going to be working with a training collar to help him remember some important lessons. He is bred to herd cows and that is an issue at the moment, but he’s getting better about that as well. He doesn’t try to hurt the cows; he just wants them in a ball and quiet. We’ll get that fixed as well. His redeeming quality is his absolute love and desire to please. His visit to the big house was not happy. They didn’t mistreat him; they just wanted something from him that he couldn’t or wouldn’t give.
We have a long prayer list and many urgent needs. Louise Hyman broke a bone in her foot. Her kids are tending to her until she gets a little better. The Newby family needs our prayers. They have lost both of their parents in a very short time. We have a number of people fighting cancer that need our community support and prayers. Please pray for our nation, our President, our government and our precious soldiers and their families. Have a great week everyone.