Sallie Satterthwaite's blog

A dark and stormy night

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It was on a dark and stormy night last week that the tree broke and came to rest in the rear cockpit of our dry-docked trawler.

That expression, “It was a dark and stormy night,” says it all, conjuring evil and mystery and cold bones on cobbled streets. More interesting than: “Severe thunderstorms will blow through Peachtree City this evening. Ho hum.” Read More»

Walking sticks

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Some years ago, I wrote about our late former mayor Howard Morgan leaning on a cane when he came to vote at the precinct where I worked.

It was not a cane, he informed me, but a walking stick. He’d had some health problems and all he needed was another leg, so to speak, to form a steadying tripod on the ground.

As we greeted each other and he came closer, I noticed that this was not an ordinary stick. When I admired it, he handed it to me to examine while he went about the business of a democratic government. Read More»

‘No problem’ — Considering new words and old phrases

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It would appear that the world did not come to an end last Saturday. I’m writing and you’re reading – but could that mean that the Rapture left us behind and we just haven’t yet missed those who were plucked from among us?

Eerie thought.

Let us take comfort wherever we find it. For me, that means playing with words and phrases, in no particular order. Read More»

A quiet weekend

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We heard it soon after we pulled into the state park where we would spend a quiet weekend with friends from church. At least it started out quiet.

So quietly, no one could quite put a time stamp on when they first heard the high-pitched sound of a motor or chainsaw or… whatever it was.

Dave said it sounded to him like an engine had been left on in the afternoon. It’s probably coming from something they’re doing at the dam, he opined, because there’s usually some work going on there.

The sound was absolutely steady, however, never wavering – yet we did not notice when it stopped. Read More»

Mary's musical adventures

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“Guten Tag, Mutti,” writes Mary, from her post as our Correspondent in Europe. It seems there was a mix-up in schedules, and she made a whirlwind tour that covered southern Germany, Austria, and Switzerland earlier this year.

Mary is not effusive. I may go on for 10 minutes about something I enjoyed, and from her I get a bemused “Umm.” Not to suggest she wasn’t paying attention. Au contraire, she can flash up that conversation years later, and is rarely wrong about details. Read More»

Las Vegas in August?

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Mary’s vacation plans are beginning to gel. She and Rainer and Hartmut (Rainer’s older son) are going to spend upwards of a week here in August before flying to Las Vegas for a week. Then Hartmut’s main squeeze will link up with them in Vegas and the couples will split off, the younger folks to go on to California for two weeks while Mary and Rainer fly to New York for a couple of days before returning to Germany. Read More»

Who will say goodbye?

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It was a rough week, last week, when the tribe gathered several times to say goodbye to recent members of the clan. Those left behind look around furtively, wondering, “Who’s next?” as another generation realizes: They are.

I’m an obituary reader. Can’t say I read every word of every obit – but I do read enough to recognize a neighbor or a church member. And I’ve been rolling a thought around in my brain. Read More»

Confessions of a television addict

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Now at the age when many parents deny they watch TV, Dave and I can look down our noses at TV fans who set their personal lives’ agenda to correspond with a favorite show. We watch very little TV, we repeat, smugly.

We were married so long ago that television had not yet scrambled high enough to throw a clear signal across the Pennsylvania hills and valleys in which we lived. If you could just make out that the shadow on the screen was the hero and the one on the left the villain, and as long as you could hear the dialogue, why, that was enough to follow the plot and marvel. Read More»

Babies are family too

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Ever since Dave became a grandpa, he has been positively ebullient about children and babies, and never passes up an opportunity to goo-goo in the sometimes startled face of a tyke in a grocery cart or a car seat.

I keep an eye on him, lest a young mother misreads his approach. He’s harmless, I want to say, and soon Mama relaxes and enjoys the attention paid her priceless treasure. And usually the tot responds with a gurgle. Read More»

Ltr. from Mary re. amnesty, vacation plans

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Since we don’t see each other a lot, I salute Mary’s accomplishments in emails and columns. I am so glad she’s my daughter. Although our time together was much less than I’d expected, we tried to spend as much of it with each other as we could.

She is having a wonderful life. Just wish a little more of it happened on the same continent as mine. Read More»