‘Monsoon” – ‘The Last Ones’ – ‘I love you now and forever’

I have three separate items that popped  up on my screen this morning –  all related in a way to each other.  I hope they touch each of you as they do me.

This first one was written by my granddaughter who lives in N. Thailand.  She wrote this yesterday relating her night and day during Monsoon season there,  I can’t imagine going thru this every year.  In view of the hurricane news in America right now this is timely for sure.


Gramma,

Imagine you are just about to go to sleep. You snuggle into your comfy bed and pull the blanket over just as you hear the sound of rain falling outside. At first it is soothing but being the end of monsoon season you have a tinge of worry in the back of your mind.

After about 20 minutes of torrential downpour you check the weather warnings to see that your area is under flood watch, yet again.

1 hour in and you have already been soaked to the bone from walking out to check if the water is still draining or not.

1.5 hours in you realise that it is time to start packing everything you own up and putting it as high as possible. Your adrenaline super hero powers kick in as you race to save your posessions.

You manage to pick things up and shove them up into places that are so high you do not really know how you got them there.

You are tired and confused but you carry on. You do not really know if the water will come all the way into your house but you carry on. At times your legs start to give up but you carry on until there is nothing more you can lift.

You realise that some things like the fridge can not go higher than your thigh height and you surrender.

You gather the animals and the emergency evac bags, turn off the breaker and climb the fence, which is the only way out of your yard at that point.

You arrive at the neighbours home to see the exhausted faces of your friends, neighbours and family.

You hear dogs barking and people talking all around you but you are so disoriented that you don’t really take it in. You want to stop and rest but the water is still rising so you watch.

As the last few brave soldiers fall asleep you sit and watch the water level because it is only a few feet from the house you have evacuated to. The road has been blocked so the only way out is by wading through the waste high rising water or by boat.

You wait and try to keep the myriad of random animals quiet so that people can get some sleep around you.

Until 5 AM when finally the water ceases to rise.

The feeling of relief brings tears to your eyes and you finally stop. You lay down on cold hard wood and fall asleep. The deep blackness is not only what your body needed it actually demanded it as you surrender to it’s pull.

After 40 minutes of pure empty darkness you awake to see the sun rising and realise that you have to go home and start cleaning the layers of mud out of your home. Exhausted and battered you make your way back over the fence, nearly falling because your body is still not awake. Just as you assess the damage you get a ding on your phone. Upon opening the message your gag reflex kicks in because it is yet another flood warning.

That was my day yesterday. I am happy it only comes once a year. Flood season is intense for us at times. The one thing I would say helped us tremendously was having a plan. We knew basically what to do and it was almost like clock work. We had already explained the process to Noi and had evac bags ready to go.

PREPARATION is key for sure. I hope you all have a good night’s sleep tonight because I very much need one myself.


This one was sent to me by Peri –  Oh how so very much I relate to it.

Children of the 1930s & 1940s “The Last Ones”

Born in the 1930s and early 1940s, we exist as a very special age cohort. We are the “last ones.” We are the last, climbing out of the depression, who can remember the winds of war and the war itself with fathers and uncles going off. We are the last to remember ration books for everything from sugar to shoes to stoves. We saved tin foil and poured fat into tin cans. We saw cars up on blocks because tires weren’t available. My mother delivered milk in a horse drawn cart.

We are the last to hear Roosevelt’s radio assurances and to see gold stars in the front windows of our grieving neighbors. We can also remember the parades on August 15, 1945; VJ Day.

We saw the “boys” home from the war build their Cape Cod style houses, pouring the cellar, tar papering it over and living there until they could afford the time and money to build it out.

We are the last who spent childhood without television; instead imagining what we heard on the radio. As we all like to brag, with no TV, we spent our childhood “playing outside until the street lights came on.” We did play outside and we did play on our own. There was no little league.The lack of television in our early years meant, for most of us, that we had little real understanding of what the world was like.

Our Saturday afternoons, if at the movies, gave us newsreels of the war and the holocaust sandwiched in between westerns and cartoons. Newspapers and magazines were written for adults.

We are the last who had to find out for ourselves.As we grew up, the country was exploding with growth. The G.I. Bill gave returning veterans the means to get an education and spurred colleges to grow.

VA loans fanned a housing boom.

Pent up demand coupled with new installment payment plans put factories to work. New highways would bring jobs and mobility. The veterans joined civic clubs and became active in politics.

In the late 40s and early 50’s the country seemed to lie in the embrace of brisk but quiet order as it gave birth to its new middle class. Our parents understandably became absorbed with their own new lives. They were free from the confines of the depression and the war. They threw themselves into exploring opportunities they had never imagined.

We weren’t neglected but we weren’t today’s all-consuming family focus. They were glad we played by ourselves “until the street lights came on.” They were busy discovering the post war world.

Most of us had no life plan, but with the unexpected virtue of ignorance and an economic rising tide we simply stepped into the world and went to find out. We entered a world of overflowing plenty and opportunity; a world where we were welcomed. Based on our naïve belief that there was more where this came from, we shaped life as we went.We enjoyed a luxury; we felt secure in our future. Of course, just as today, not all Americans shared in this experience.

Depression poverty was deep rooted. Polio was still a crippler. The Korean War was a dark presage in the early 1950s and by mid-decade school children were ducking under desks. China became Red China. Eisenhower sent the first “advisors” to Vietnam. Castro set up camp in Cuba and Khrushchev came to power. We are the last to experience an interlude when there were no existential threats to our homeland.

We came of age in the late 1940s and early 1950s. The war was over and the cold war, terrorism, climate change, technological upheaval and perpetual economic insecurity had yet to haunt life with insistent unease.

Only we can remember both a time of apocalyptic war and a time when our world was secure and full of bright promise and plenty. We experienced both.We grew up at the best possible time, a time when the world was getting better not worse.We did not have it easy. Our wages were low, we did without, we lived within our means, we worked hard to get a job, and harder still to keep it. Things that today are considered necessities, we considered unreachable luxuries. We made things last. We fixed, rather than replaced. We had values and did not take for granted that somebody will take care of us. We learned to care for ourselves and we also cared for others.We are “The Last Ones” and I can say it’s been a good life!


And this one is posted on http://thejacksonpress.org/ –  I am always surprised at the *timing* and the fact that Frank still has so many of the old posts I have sent out over the years. This certainly fits in with the two items above and it is a fitting *ending* to this post.
Jackie Juntti

WGEN  idzrus@earthlink.net

 

“I LOVE YOU NOW AND FOREVER”

As I was paging thru my bible this morning I came across a small clipping that I had cut out and saved some time in the past.
It held meaning to me for several reasons – first is memories of when my grandmother died in 1946.  I remember watching so many relatives, aunts and uncles, and others of the family come to see gramma’s body (she was gone from it).  I remember hearing so many of them moaning about not having come to see her before she died – they could have but didn’t.  It was at that point in time, I was 6 years old,  that I resolved to never become like them.  That I would do all I could to see and say to those I love BEFORE they died.  I resolved to NOT be one who attends a funeral or memorial service with REGRETS over having not done what I could while the person was alive.  So far I have been able to keep that resolution.

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