Monday, November 16, 2015

Good Bye Bottle Hunter: Me on a Monday

My Mom asked me the other day if I remembered Howard Dean.

Absolutely I said, thinking in my head that he was one of the few cool adults at church when I was growing up.

She told me he was sick & they hoped he could kick it. I was impressed to hear he was 99 years old. Just because I get older every year I'm amazed that it's something that happens to everyone else. She reminded me about the bottle hunt that Howard, my friend Brian Balfe and I went on years ago. It was epic during a time in my life where most things were pretty ordinary.

Howard invited along Brian (in Mom's opinion) as he wanted someone good with a shovel. Brian lived right around the corner so it wasn't a big deal to swing in and grab him. We were off to some dump in Utica that was full of old bottles. Howard had boxes & newspaper for wrapping up our treasures.

My find for the day was a smashed china doll head which I carefully cleaned and glued when I got home. My Grandma Skip "borrowed it" and showed up weeks later with a real doll that my Great Aunt sewed for me. Not sure what Brian came home with, other than to get an ass whooping 'cause he was in trouble for being late. These days you just text your kids and there was no phone at the dump, just lots of overgrown brush & glass.

The green bottle came from Howard as a wedding present. According to his handwritten note it was used 1865-1878 to hold mineral water. Sadly I found out Friday that he passed away so I slid into the weekend with a bit of sadness in my heart.

Saturday am was an early one for me. I got the morning shift to take the boy to the airport. He was dressed in his blues as Civil Air Patrol had been asked to stand honor guard for the vets from WWII and the Korean War who were taking a special flight to Washington DC in honor of Veterans Day. So at 4 am when I was staring bleary eyed at my cup of coffee I could feel deep sadness ready to pounce but couldn't think of what was bothering me...

I had to think for a brief second and then Paris...oh Paris...We had just gotten home from a birthday dinner Friday night for Luke when we turned on the TV & heard about the atrocities in France.

Going back to bed at 5:30 in the am after the airport drop off was not an option so I turned on the TV for more breaking news & decided to make Christmas cards in the quiet and dark house. It was the only thing I could think of that would help keep sadness at bay.

As I mass produced Christmas cards I thought about little acts of bottle hunting memories, making cards, to dropping your youngest off in early dawn hours to show respect to his elders & how proud he made you..We really can't change what evil happens in places far away but we can keep going on with the good stuff and that is what I did this weekend....

A wave goes out to the Me on the Monday Girl....dear Sian who I do hope had lots of happiness her in weekend!


  1. Really nice post....brought mist to my eyes....the way you brought such disparate things together was superb! Really superb!

  2. Beautiful cards, and yes it was a very sad weekend wasn't it. I loved your bottle story, have a good week x

  3. What a weekend you've had. All mixed up emotions... But you got some chrissy cards done!!! That is all good:):) and your Luke is a STAR in the making!!!! Poor Paris.... I think it struck home because it is such an iconic destination for visitors around the world.....

  4. I think you have said it absolutely perfectly. It's so very sad, such a waste; we have to keep going with the good stuff.

    I loved your story about the doll (but you knew I would didn't you?)

    Have a good week Mitra


I LOVE comments. Come on. Leave me one. They make me smile!