It felt so strange coming to Tampa on Wednesday from freezing temperatures in Maine only to find morning temperatures hovering around the 39 to 40 degree mark. Not exactly what one thinks of when thinking of running off to the Sunshine State in fall and winter. The sweatshirt I brought came in handy as we sat about in the evening. It's Saturday morning now and it's already in the mid 60's. That's more like it.
Happily on Friday, which was my birthday, we had balmy and sunny conditions suitable for tee shirts and shorts. Yea! I think the weather gods are promising more of the same today with perhaps a little rain, which, as we all know, must fall into each of our lives.
Birthday began with a brunch at a lovely place called Daddy's Grill over in or almost in Clearwater. It was just CA, Michelle and I, as the kids were all in school and Michael was working. We had three of the most wonderful Benedicts - one plain, one Florentine and one Western. They also knew about coffee. I didn't think I could eat it all. Guess what?
The evening began with a Friday Night Fish Fry (a regular occurrence here at the club house) and then presents. It would have been difficult to improve on the day. I am overwhelmed with gratitude for the privilege of reaching the grand old age of 83. I'm pretty sure it's just plain luck. And I still feel as well as I did at 82!
Here I am filled with gratitude and Thanksgiving is still almost a week away. But then, that's the point - isn't it? To live daily in the spirit of thankfulness for life itself and it's attendant gifts, then on Thanksgiving Day to come together to express our gratitude for each other. Sometimes, with the hard work of every day living, it's difficult to keep such lofty thoughts in mind. Well, it is for me.
The two college boys will be home this weekend and that will add energy to the mix. One is a freshman at UF, Gainesville and the other is a senior at FSU, Tallahassee. As you probably know by now, there was a shooting at FSU that has caused considerable adjustment in life there. Our Ethan is fine but he reports the school is visibly shaken.
If I back up far enough to see the whole world, it is plain that much of the world has little for which to be thankful. I think about that, and what those of us who are more fortunate could do about it. Whatever the answer is, it's the textbook definition of a great people.
I think I'll go out for a nice long walk. Got to do something about all that birthday indulgence.
May each of you have a wonderful Thanksgiving, if possible with someone.
Some say love travels great distances. I tend to believe this. Open your window - here it comes.
Jerry Henderson Odessa Florida
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Tuesday, November 11, 2014
WAR IS NOT THE ANSWER. Ask any veteran. Do not confuse the act of honoring the men and women who served in some politician's war with the act of war itself. Do not confuse the execution of armed conflict on foreign soil with the defense of America. 11/11/11 was an Armistice that was to end all war. That war was terrible beyond imagination. But imagination has grown and improved since then. The horror of modern warfare is beyond imagination. War today is a video game - unless you are actually there. Vote no to war. Vote no to the bellicose politicians who want to send someone else to die. Vote for peace. Vote for the people who have never wanted war. Happy Veteran's Day everyone.