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Kathy’s Column for Nov. 29, 2012
SoVaNow.com / November 29, 2012THE YEAR CONTINUES TO FLY BY, THANKSGIVING IS OVER AND WE ARE WELL INTO THE … wonderful time of year when we celebrate, on Dec. 25 the most miraculous of all births. Then as we continue to wonder where 2012 went it will be time to welcome in another new year. I trust everyone had a lovely Thanksgiving, mine was perfect in every way, especially the friends we celebrated with. I trust that we will continue to be grateful for all we have each and every day, not only on the November day set aside for thankfulness. I’m sure we can agree that to be grateful is definitely a virtue we need to cultivate daily. An inspirational quote generally attributed to Goethe says, “Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back…(But) the moment one definitely commits oneself then Providence moves too. All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred…”. It’s a promise to each of us that if we commit ourselves to be thankful that soon without thinking about it we will continue to be grateful daily and it will become a part of our lives that is as comfortable as wearing a warm, shabby old sweater on a cold winter’s day.
IT’S HARD FOR ME TO REALIZE THAT I HAVE LIVED IN VIRGINIA … for seventeen years, longer than I have lived anywhere else, with the exception of Wisconsin where I was born. While there I moved to various towns at different times in my life but never have I lived in one place for as long a time as I have in Halifax County. That must mean that Virginia is a lovely place to be, which I can add a resounding Yes too, along with saying I am so glad we came. Could it be that it’s the people that make Southside one of my very favorite places, silly question I know it is!
SOME GOOD ADVICE FOR EVERYONE NEEDING TO FORGIVE SOME SORT OF WRONG … “Always remember that anyone who angers you, conquers you.”-copied One more good idea comes from Victor Hugo who said, “Laughter is the sun that drives winter from the human face.” Since laughter usually involves other people it contributes to a healthy social interaction which is a known deterrent to depression, making it a win, win situation. I’ll end this section with something much lighter, “Thinking is when your mouth stays shut and your head keeps talking to itself.” And, “One thing about silence-it can’t be repeated.”- both from an unknown source
THE SOUTH BOSTON RUNNING CLUB HELD ITS FIRST CORNUCOPIA TURKEY DAY TROT … on Thanksgiving. This run was dedicated to my neighbor and friend Elizabeth Conner, who made a wonderful difference in my life and innumerable others. I’ll never forget our neighborly chats and feel so blessed to have had her in my life, I continue to miss her. A carload of food was donated to “Serving Hope”, as the entry fee was canned goods, and we know Elizabeth would fully approve since she was a true “giver”.
I HAVE ENJOYED IMMENSELY THE FACT THAT ELECTIONS FOR NOW ARE OVER … and that we continue to go on. Once again whether your candidate did or did not get in office, it is imperative that we remain informed and vigilant as to what is happening to our country and the world. In a newspaper article by David Broder he said “Neither party has or will ever have a monopoly on virtue” he noted that we must concentrate on the word anomie. It means “a collapse of the social structures governing a given society” and also “the alienation experienced by an individual or a group in such a situation.” We must all be sure that any hostilities we may feel towards other sides doesn’t take us dangerously close to anomie. In a prayer by Episcopalian Rev. Tom Ehrich he offers the best advice of all, “Where we don’t agree, let the manner of our disagreeing be an example for overheated partisans to follow. Where we fail, let our confessions inspire contrition among the powerful. Where we succeed, let our humility give true credit. Where we cringe at the beliefs of others, let our tolerance and magnanimity show the way to peace.” “The deepest American dream is not the hunger for money or fame; it is the dream of settling down, in peace and freedom and cooperation, in the promised land.”-Scott Russell Sanders, Writing from the Center (Indiana University Press)
I’M GLAD YOU CAN’T HEAR WHAT I’M DOING ALONG WITH WRITING THIS WEEKS COLUMN … because I have our local radio station on and am singing, at the top of my voice along with all the Christmas songs they are now playing. It’s amazing how quickly one can get in the holiday mood when repeating the words of “Silent, Night”, my all time favorite, “Oh Holy Night”, or “Jingle Bells”. With the cold weather we’ve had recently it makes it very easy to get in the mood. You must remember, that anything less than 80 degrees or above is cold for me so I’m already feeling ice, snow and sleet in the air whenever I walk out the door.
LAUGHTER, THE BEST MEDICINE … from an antique copy of Reader’s Digest includes the following bumper stickers, “I didn’t fight my way to the top of the food chain to be a vegetarian”, “Change is inevitable, except from a vending machine”, “Warning dates in calendar are closer than they appear”, and “Why is abbreviation such a long word”?
I MUST SHARE SOMETHING BEAUTIFUL THAT HAPPENED TO ME A LITTLE OVER A WEEK AGO … on Nov. 17 to be exact. I was able to travel to Wisconsin where my sister-in-law Gail who passed away this past July was honored in a ceremony at Columbia-St.Mary’s Hospital. They have just opened their new Oncology Department and since Gail began the program almost thirty years ago they wanted to incorporate a special program in memory of her along with the “Open House” for the community. A very special Nun, Sister Angie wrote a song and a poem which she read before she dedicated a special plaque and room to honor one of their own. Once again grief was felt as one after the other people came forward saying how special she was to each of them and how she, Gail was their mentor and more importantly their dear friend. There was a peace that followed and a presence as though she were there sharing this auspicious occasion with us. I spoke with the coordinator of the event, someone who hadn’t known Gail because she had retired before this new person came on board, and I especially thanked her for having the celebration on what would have been Gail’s 73rd birthday. She looked at me and said , “I had no idea today was her birthday, it was the only day that worked out from my list of dates to choose from. There were so many conflicts on every other date” Did I think this was just luck or happenstance, of course not I knew better, and I along with many others looked up and said, “Happy Birthday dear one we miss you so much and always will.” Co-workers of Gail shared memories of her with us and asked were we the family from down South in Virginia and was I the one who worked at “The News and Record”, we felt so special that she had told them all about us and our little corner of the Commonwealth. (Once again I said thank-you to someone I miss so much.)
GOD BLESS US ALL AT THIS BEAUTIFUL TIME OF YEAR, AND MAY WE IN TURN BLESS OTHERS BY OUR WORDS AND DEEDS.
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