Arriving in Michigan was like experiencing “Old Home Week.” I stayed with former neighbors, Bob & Noushi Myers, who had a picnic entertaining other friends with whom I would stay later in the week. Noushi was supposed to go with us to Essenhaus in Middlebury, IN on Monday but was experiencing a major case of poison ivy in the a.m. so she had to go for a shot.
Noushi is my inspiration. She has macular degeneration and has lost most of her sight. You would never know she had any kind of disability if you watched her fix a meal, garden, do her daily chores or even just listen to her. She accepts the limitations far better than I would and manages picnics, parties, and everyday life with her usual sense-of-humor.
Tuesday she went with me to visit the widow of my late husband’s boss. Miriam Johnson lives in a beautiful old white farmhouse that is to drool over. Her personality exudes welcome and friendliness. Miriam treated us to breakfast and after leaving her, I got lost trying to find my way back to my old stomping grounds. I knew those roads like the back of my hand but after 30 years, the routes were a little iffy. Anyway, we saw territory we had neither seen recently. Of course, we may have gotten lost simply because we were talking a mile a minute.
Eileen Foghino and I had a whole hour of sipping sodas at the Riverfront Café in Niles and the next afternoon she printed off my boarding passes to Spokane. It was amazing how much conversational territory we covered, as did Sue Seedorf and I where she works in the Cassopolis Historical Library. Once upon a century ago, we worked together at Memorial Radiation Oncology in South Bend. She had far more extensive (and interesting) memories of that time than I did. One evening took me to dinner with Mary Alice & Richard Fletcher, also from Memorial, in their fantastic new-to-them Mishawaka home.
Sundays are always special when I can attend the church of my heart, where I collected hugs with many friends I hadn’t seen for years, including Dori Blackmun. Dori and I managed memories of our families, and husbands long gone. This stop also included hugs and conversation with Walter (He was my choir director for many years) and Sally. I visited a very quiet place and enjoyed two one-sided conversations with my Jack. (If he were alive, he’d probably say they were one-sided then, too!) Smile…
I wish for you old friends with whom you can get lost, laugh, hug, and converse about “The Good Olde Days.” God bless until next week.
Winter in the Wilderness, the first e-book novel published by Minshall, is offered at most Internet book sites. A print edition may be obtained from Amazon, or you can order an autographed copy from the author at Box 1040, Congress, AZ for $7.95 plus $3.50 for postage and handling. The fourth edition of RVing Alaska and Canada is available through Amazon.com.
At 45, Widow Minshall began 20 years of solo full-time RVing throughout Alaska, Mexico, and Canada. Sharlene canoed the Yukon, mushed sled dogs, worked a dude ranch, visited Hudson Bay polar bears, and lived six months on a Mexican beach. She lectured at Life on Wheels, published six RV-related books and wrote a novel, “Winter in the Wilderness.”