Sallie Satterthwaite's blog

Stranded in Kentucky

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“Years from now, when we retell this story to our great-grandchildren, promise me you won’t tell people I hid in the bathroom, would you?”
“Only if you promise not to make a column out of our stupidity. This is the dumbest thing I’ve done in 60 years of boating.”

What? Me, tell the world we let ourselves get blown into water too shallow to float our boat, and spent days waiting to be rescued? And all for lunch in a nice restaurant? Never. Read More»

The Truth about Abbie

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Among a host of things we need to get done before time runs out, one is to settle the question: Should we get a new dog? The last dog we had was an Irish Setter, and we had to put her down in the fall of 1993.
We loved that dear old soul to distraction, which helped us tolerate the shedding. As a younger dog, there was just no stopping the fun. She made a joke of everything and visited the bases of certain trees and shrubs as though invisible messages were stacked one on another as we went. Read More»

Still looking for Daddy

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When I opened a letter from a cousin last week, out dropped a photocopy of a hideously scarred old photograph. It was a formal studio portrait, dated December 1892, of a woman and a man of indeterminate age, with an infant and a small boy. I sat for a long time looking at that dim picture. It was the first time I had ever laid eyes on a likeness of my grandparents.

Haven’t brought up my genealogical data lately; I get so wrapped up in it that nothing else happens when “Mom’s doing genealogy stuff.”
My daddy’s family was what we’d call today dysfunctional. Read More»

Luna Moth Mysteries

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They looked like leaves, two lime-green leaves in a jumble, caught on the outside of the screenporch that allows us to have doors open at night. When I looked at them more intently, they transformed from tangled leaves to two large moths with wings tightly folded together.

The large insects appeared to be still in the process of extending their wings and legs, inflating them from weeks in pupae, making ready to take to the air.

I needed to start our dinner, but I decided to keep watch over the moths lest a bird or other predator decided to take them out for dinner. Read More»

Fashionata, Part 2

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A few days after the makeup session, I met Wendy, Joanne, and a couple of other women at now-defunct Banker‘s Note. We were each to pick out a casual and a dressy outfit for the church women‘s fashion show.

Joanne, a stunning woman of a certain age (meaning near mine), snatched two dresses off the racks, emerged a moment later wearing one, said “What do you think?“ to the rest of us. She did the same thing with the other outfit, and was done.

In five minutes, she was done. And she looked gorgeous in both choices. Read More»

Fashionista, Part 1

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Genetic engineering is in the news again. I say, bring it on.

When they passed out the genes that give women a sense of style, skill with a curling iron, artistry with the paint pots, I drew blanks. Genetic engineering might be the answer.

A church committee chairperson called and invited me to participate in a church fashion show. I agreed, thinking I might give other glamour-challenged women hope. Read More»

Fashionista, Part 1

Sallie Satterthwaite's picture

Genetic engineering is in the news again. I say, bring it on.

When they passed out the genes that give women a sense of style, skill with a curling iron, artistry with the paint pots, I drew blanks. Genetic engineering might be the answer.

A church committee chairperson called and invited me to participate in a church fashion show. I agreed, thinking I might give other glamour-challenged women hope. Read More»

Correcting the record, but not incognito

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If there’s anything worse in journalism than not checking facts, this ersatz reporter has forgotten what it is. Maybe not correcting the record when you can. Herewith, a correction and a reprise.

I might be breaking a taboo here. Unsigned letters usually do not rate publication, but this one is unusual. In the first place, I don’t remember when I’ve seen such a well-written letter – perfect in spelling, grammar, punctuation. I’d grade it at least a 95, and that because she abbreviated “Methodist.” Read More»

Gremlins? Leprechauns? Us?

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The last piece of the pie, left out when the family went to bed, and gone at daybreak?

A key that worked before but cannot be depended on to open a cabinet door again?

A window that blew open just as the rain came and left the table wet?

A runaway roll of toilet paper?

Which are real?

My parents called any such mysterious anomaly the work of a “gremlin.”

In retrospect, I don’t remember any special rationale for gremlins except, perhaps, to find a source of mischief to clear one’s childhood reputation as a mischief-maker. Read More»

Was it worth it?

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In the course of less than a month, Fayette County lost two of its most revered citizens, Drs. Ferrol and Helen Sams.

In sheer gentility, they epitomized devotion to community and to family – which for the most part are the same thing.

I forget, sometimes, how the years slip away, and when a friend spoke to me the other day, I was taken off-guard. Our county is so populous now that it’s hard to imagine that when the Samses opened their Fayetteville office, they were the only full-time physicians here. Read More»