Ken’s e-Pistle

January 4, 2023

I hope that this writing finds everyone happy and still experiencing the festival fullness of the season. My family was blessed with a quiet Christmas Eve and Day due to the gentle ministrations of Mother Nature who first nearly froze us to death and then graced us with a light covering of snow.  Thankfully, I have learned to keep a fairly full larder.

One of the novel sights in all of this was the complete freezing over of our ponds.  When the temperatures hovered around zero we noticed our Canada geese coming in for a landing and then skidding very un-graciously for a good twenty yards or so.  Miss Vicki (hereinafter referred to as “Vicki the Good”) was very concerned for them and wanted at first to go outside and make sure that they weren’t hurt.  I advised her not to get too close; geese are not known for welcoming intruders into their domain, particularly when they have been recently embarrassed by a troublesome landing.  She then suggested that we put out some food for them.  Again, I was the party-pooper when I reminded her that the same food which would feed the geese would also attract the bears.  I told her that the sight of a goose becoming the Christmas dinner for a bear would be unseemly at best and traumatizing at worst. She agreed.

I used to be a great fan of winter.  I loved the wonderful ice storms which would paralyze Atlanta.  I took great joy in “snow days” in which the whole school system would shut down when ice formed on some remote bridge, posing a danger to busses and cars.  The grass would need no cutting and the walkways no sweeping (Blowers had not been invented then, I’m sure.) I could stay inside and watch the three channels of television, read my books and play with my toys.

Now I am more of a fan of summer.  I like working in the yard and fishing in the ponds.  I like the endless parade of cookouts which do little for my waistline but bring good fellowship and joy to my soul.  Beyond this, my arthritis doesn’t hurt as much and I can be a bit more active.  I make sure to schedule my annual physicals during the summer when I am in much better shape and have not yet put on what I call my winter tonnage.

I have become aware that I appreciate all of the seasons and am trying to reach the point where the anticipation of the next one doesn’t spoil the joy of the present.  I look forward to spring and cleaning out the garden to plant new things and watch the world come alive.  In summer, I’ll look forward to the beautiful foliage of fall and that first crackling fire in the fireplace. Come late fall and early winter I will eagerly anticipate the decorations of Advent and Christmas.  Then the cycle will start all over again.

The panoply of God’s creation is celebrated in the fact that each season of the year and, indeed, of life, itself, have blessings to enjoy and share.  We must learn to be patient and perceptive in all of them.  And grateful.

Of course, my gratitude for the joys of winter won’t keep me from buying a few bulbs and bushes against the coming of spring.  And then there is the joy of opening the pool…

I bid you peace!