we the people

“where there is a crime, there is an investigation…
where then is there an investigation hoping for a crime?”

Charles Krauthammer

I have been arguing for years that our society is becoming more intolerant,
not less and that in rejecting our Christian roots we will end up
rejecting our Christian fruits (including tolerance).

David Robertson

“Their common enemy is now an illiberal and feral anti-religious movement
which wants to criminalise faith.”

Kevin McKenna


(a tiny plucked fig rests on a bed of freshly picked herbs / Julie Cook / 2017)

Since today is Sunday, the Christian sabbath, I thought it timely, and perhaps
rather important, that I use today’s post to remind us, the Faithful,
that as we now rest and enjoy this holy day, that we should remember that there
are those who are waiting in the wings for our undoing….
and lest any of you think me daft or suffering from
the heat, all you need to do is look around your world….

The following excerpts are from an article written by journalist Kevin McKenna
which appeared in a recent column in The Guardian.
The Guardian being an odd place to find an article written by a journalist
who is alarmed by the brewing trouble he sees on the horizon for both
Christianity and our Western Civilization…
for The Guardian is known for its more left and liberal offerings.

The article is based on the current situation in Scotland but I believe we could
pull out the word Scotland inserting rather say Boston or Atlanta
or London…maybe New York, Berlin, San Francisco,Paris…or…well,
you get the idea….as it the sentiment is one of a global scale and not
merely localized to Scotland.

So maybe, just maybe, we see a bit of common sense actually filtering out of the
proverbial turnip….

Thus, if you sincerely believe that a human life in the womb is
deserving of as much protection as any other human life you are considered
an extremist and obviously (if you are male) a sexist who is guilty of
crimes against feminism. If you sincerely believe that the sacrament of
marriage is “a covenant by which a man and a woman establish between
themselves a partnership of the whole of life and which is ordered by
its nature to the good of the spouses and the procreation and education
of offspring” then there are people in Scotland who would wish to have you
jailed for homophobic hate crime.
And if you support the concept of faith schools then you are fuelling
sectarianism, despite there never having been a scintilla of evidence
to support such a specious claim.

It’s this insidious campaign of intolerance against Christians in Scotland
that Archbishop of Glasgow Philip Tartaglia sought to address in a recent essay
for the US online publication Crux which is influential in Vatican circles.
The archbishop claimed too many Catholics had become “wishy-washy”
about their faith.
They were being challenged by robust secularism,
according to the archbishop,
which was hostile to believing “in anything supernatural;
in anything they can’t see or touch or experience;
or in anything beyond modelling and encouraging decent behaviour”.

The Reverend David Robertson,
former moderator of the Free Church of Scotland and perhaps the most influential
Christian thinker in Scotland today,
knows what the archbishop is talking about.
The Rev Robertson has been the victim of a sustained campaign of abuse for many
years now simply for re-emphasising Christian teaching on the
sanctity of life and the meaning of marriage.
One of the big lies that have been allowed to take shape in modern,
diverse Scotland where all are apparently welcome is that failure to sign up to
the mainstream view of society and what it means to be human is evidence of hate.

If you are anti-abortion you must hate women;
if you are against same-sex marriage then you must be homophobic.
It’s a falsehood and a pernicious one at that.
Hatred of gay, lesbian and trans-gender people and hate crimes against women
are serious and ugly issues.
But knowingly to manipulate ignorance around these issues to make false
accusations against people whose religion you resent is an equally serious and ugly matter.

Kevin McKenna

Please find the full article posted here on the link to The Wee Flea—
whose author just so happens to be one of the victims of today’s
ugly and hate filled anti-Chrisitan rhetoric….

Kevin McKenna – It is time to stand up to those who wish to criminalise faith – article in The Herald

“If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you.
If you were of the world, the world would love its own;
but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world,
therefore the world hates you.

John 15:18-19

It takes two baby

“It takes two, baby
It takes two, baby
Me and you
It just takes two
It takes two, baby
It takes two, baby,
To make a dream come true
It just take two”

Lyrics Marvin Gaye and Kim Weston


(our lone apple / Julie Cook / 2017)

Thirty four years ago two rather young naive people said “I do.”
Over the years there would be many a time when both thought that
having said “I don’t” might have been the better option.

And so it is with anything that we do in this life that is done for any real
length of time….
There are the days you’re glad you’re in it and there are days
you wish you’d never seen it!

Marriage is just such an endeavor.

Eventually add to the mix a family…and it can suddenly become hard even
on the best of days.

One thing I know as a Christian.
Marriage is a thing that Satan abhors.

For marriage is a worldly example of God’s love and desire of and for us.
A union and a joining…that mirrors His gift to us in the form of His son.
As Christ is considered the bridegroom and the Church, His spouse…
so we come together as man and woman, bridegroom and spouse.

A union that is a rhythmic tandem of two becoming one.

And just like a tandem bike—you’ve got two very different individuals working
together to make a single bike work…making it move and steer in the direction
that both folks want to go…
because a tandem bike can only go in one direction despite two very distinct
and very different people peddling. Both folks need to be on the same page,
or nobody is going anywhere.

For there has to be just one person who steers and directs while both work to keep it going…
Balancing and moving together as one in order to keep everything level and
flowing.

Which brings me to the picture of the split apple.

Out of the 4 apple trees that my husband and I planted a couple of years ago..
Little trees that we’ve babied, watered, fertilized,
trimmed and fretted over…
we have just harvested our crop…
a lone single apple for the year.

We watched a little flower bloom then form into a tiny green orb.
The tree actually had another little apple that was growing alongside the first…
we concluded there’d be at least one for me and one for my husband.

But one night one of the two apples disappeared…
disappeared to our ravenous deer population.

However, for whatever reason, the higher apple remained….
growing into a full fledged apple.

We’ve been watching it.
Waiting to see if it would survive our midnight thieves.

So triumphantly the other evening, my husband picked the apple and ceremoniously
carried it into the house where I proceeded to wash and cut it in half…

One half for me, one half for him….
Cause it takes two halves to make a whole….

Happy Anniversary to us!!!

Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself
up for her, that he might sanctify her,
having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word,
that he might present the church to himself in splendor,
without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and
without blemish.
Even so husbands should love their wives as their own bodies.
He who loves his wife loves himself.

Ephesians 5:25-28

Moving on, to the next

“I wish it need not have happened in my time,” said Frodo.
“So do I,” said Gandalf, “and so do all who live to see such times.
But that is not for them to decide.
All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.”
J.R.R. Tolkien


(the mounded rocks to help break the storm waves at The Breakers Hotel /
Palm Beach, FL / Julie Cook / 2017)

“It was too perfect to last,’
so I am tempted to say of our marriage.
But it can be meant in two ways.
It may be grimly pessimistic—
as if God no sooner saw two of His creatures happy than He stopped it
(‘None of that here!’).
As if He were like the Hostess at the sherry-party who separates two guests
the moment they show signs of having got into a real conversation.

But it could also mean ‘This had reached its proper perfection.
This had become what it had in it to be.
Therefore of course it would not be prolonged.
‘As if God said,
‘Good; you have mastered that exercise.
I am very pleased with it.
And now you are ready to go on to the next.”

― C.S. Lewis, A Grief Observed

In that place of sheer isolation and utter vulnerability,
deep within the quagmire of mourning and sorrow of which we find ourselves
sinking helplessly into the quicksand of our losses and suffering…
we humans are fast and keen to denounce the omnipotent God..
we proclaim Him to be most cruel, sadistic and menacingly cold hearted.

For we are hurting for heaven’s sake….
can He, does He, not see…
does He not know…
or worse….
does He simply not care…??

As C.S Lewis reflects on the loss of his wife—
he, in such typical Lewis fashion, expresses the thoughts and feelings that
are our own…
that of our angst and misery culminating from the overwhelming painful experience
we all eventually experience from our living, death and loss…

As he sums it up nicely in one wonderful notion…

“Good; you have mastered that exercise.
I am very pleased with it.
And now you are ready to go on to the next.”

And so we are…ready to go on
on to the next….
to the next whatever…
the next whatever God has in store…
all the while nursing our wounded hearts,
we move on, by His Grace, to that which comes next…

(for a wonderful movie about Lewis, his marriage, the death of his wife due to cancer and how Lewis wrestles with God…see the 1993 movie Shadowlands staring Anthony Hopkins and Deborah Winger—a marvelous and timeless movie)

when man becomes God

“Communism begins where atheism begins.”
“Communism abolishes eternal truths,
it abolishes all religion all morality”

Karl Marx


(a thistle blooming in a meadow / Julie Cook / 2017)

Since his expulsion from his once beautiful and safe garden home,
man has vied to become his own creator, his own director, his own God….
Thinking, no actually more like proclaiming,
that he knows best and simply… that he IS the best…

In yesterday’s post, we read a quote by Sister Lucia—the Carmelite nun who as a child in
1917 along with her two cousins, experienced several Divine encounters with the Virgin Mary.

Over the course of several months, Mary actually shared several prophecies with the children.
With one such prophecy being about the final confrontation between Good and Evil—
or more precisely between Christ and Satan…

“The final battle between the Lord and the reign of Satan will be about marriage and
the family.
Don’t be afraid, because anyone who operates for the sanctity of marriage and the family will
always be contended and opposed in every way,
because this is the decisive issue.
However, Our Lady has already crushed its head.”

(the quote is taken from a letter written by Sister Lucia to Cardinal Carlo Caffarra of Bologna)

The holy sanctity of both marriage and family, it appears,
is to be a lynchpin in that dramatic collision…

And are we not seeing that same “lynchpin” proving to be a divisive issue in our own current times?

I’ve recently started reading a new book, I was more than a little intrigued when
first, from out of the blue, I found that quote by Sister Lucia then later, when reading,
I was broadsided by what appears to be another piece of the puzzle
presented earlier by Sister Lucia….
two vastly different encounters yet now oddly apparently connected.

And as I’ve said before, I don’t believe in happenstance or coincidence.

The book, I initially concluded, was going to be a typically political and historical
book based on two leading world figures..

A Pope and A President
by Paul Kenogor

The book is based on the relationship between Ronald Reagan and John Paull II and
“the extraordinary untold story of the 20th century”

A story I pretty much assumed would center on the work and contribution of both men
in the dismantling of the Soviet Union—the toppling of communism as it were.

I’ve read several previous books showcasing the relationships between Reagan, Thatcher,
Gorbachev and John Paul…each of whom were instrumental in the tearing down of
that infamous wall….

But this book has an unusual beginning, not what I expected…
It begins in Fatima, Portugal 1917…
and intermixes with the death of the Romanov family and the Russian Revolution.

There’s much I feel I already want to share but I’m not even to page 50….
For to digest the book properly, it is a bit of a slow go as I read and re-read certain
passages.

While reading last night I was struck by an incident that had taken place involving the
newly formed Communist Congress spearheaded by Lenin, Trotsky, Stalin and others,
involving the Russian Orthodox Church.

“The Russian Orthodox Church’s long-standing prohibition against divorce was lifted,
leading to an explosion in divorce rates and havoc upon the Russian family.
Lenin made good on his June 1913 promise to secure and “unconditional annulment of all
laws against abortions.
By 1920, abortion was legal and free of charge to Russian women.
The number of abortions skyrocketed to levels still unmatched in human history.”

I no longer find it coincidental that with man attempting to become God, the first thing
he wants to dismantle is marriage…that sacred union as mandated by God.
Because if you are now you’re own god, then why listen to the One claiming to be the same?

And so too the man god, it appears, finds it most natural to throw caution to the wind
while tossing the proverbial baby right out with the bath water…
….cause that’ll work, right?!?

And so we see that man has decided that he has a better idea of how living should work.

Of which has a direct impact on the family unit—
that bond that God deemed to be a Holy unit…
and naturally the man god decided that that too is also utter rubbish….

Thus with the dissolving of what God originally intended marriage to be,
we instead have the erosion of that very sacred union between man and woman…
with a direct resulting decay of, in turn, the essence of humanity….

But obviously that whole notion of a decreed sacred union along with the subsequent family unit
is no longer of importance to the now ruling man god….

Throughout the course of mankind, when man has attempted to usurp control from the
Divine Creator, the consequences have proven to be disastrous…
so why should today’s time be any different.

For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife,
and they will become one flesh.

Genesis 2:24

Growing up

“The mark of the immature man is that he wants to die nobly for a cause, while the mark of the mature man is that he wants to live humbly for one.”
― J.D. Salinger

That’s one of the things we learn as we grow older — how to forgive. It comes easier at forty than it did at twenty.”
― L.M. Montgomery

DSC01099
(Guinea Wasp among the flowers / Julie Cook / 2015)

When did you know that you were all grown up?
Really grown up. . .
As in no longer childlike but rather the designated, tag you’re it, authority of all things known and those things yet known. As in you are now the expert, the one everyone has decided to turn to for help, advice, strength, guidance, knowledge, direction, responsibility. . . the one who had now been taxed with the hard decisions, the tough choices, the yeses and the nos. . .??

For some of us it was perhaps a catastrophic event early on in life. A harsh reality thrust upon us far too early and much too soon.
For others it seemed to come at the cold uncaring hand of fate, the economics of our world, the poor choices of others.

Some of us mark the milestone in much the same way as certain ethnic tribal groups who have ceremonial rites of passage. The hoopla of a 21st birthday, the last hooray of a bachelor or bachelorette party before one’s impending nuptials. Some of us know the passing of the torch occurs the moment our first child is born. . .

I thought my moment came at age 25 when my mom died and I had to care for a father who was suddenly a lost child, readily foregoing adulthood while wrapped in his utter grief. I was pretty certain it hadn’t come at 23 when I married—as I was still so green and terribly wet behind the ears back then.

I think it also happened again when my son was born. I had to put my wants and needs aside as I was now responsible for the well-being of another. Resposiblilty should equate to growing up, should it not? There was just something about losing a parent and then becoming a parent. . .
Surely that was it, the time. . . the time of losing a parent and becoming a parent that signified life as a grown up.

At 55 I figured I was pretty grown up.
No doubt about it, grown.
I had retired had I not?
One has got to be pretty old to be able to retire right?
One would think.

My son got married last year.
I have a daughter-n-law.
My hair is turning rather silveresque.
My bones are a bit more brittle.
My eyesight is eluding me.
My mind may not be exactly as sharp as it once was.
My husband keeps reminding me I’m not as young as I once was.
I’m not keen upon hearing that.

Yet events of recent weeks have once again reminded me, that I’m still not totally grown up. . .
not by a long shot.

It slowly dawned on me, as I sat splayed legged on the floor of my old bedroom, of which now acts as Dad’s office, sorting through a myriad, or more like a mountain, of unpaid bills, forgotten tax information, past due this and that, a plethora of saved junk mail, folder upon folder of the years past all while spending countless hours on the phone sorting out the disaster he had slowly created when, on the fateful day we can’t seem to recall which was which, that he woke up and his mind decided it no longer wanted to be the grownup mind of a dad, my dad.

It may have come when I began writing countless checks, signing my name where his name should have been. When I called the numerous insurance companies seeking help. When the nurse came from the insurance company to evaluate his needs. When I called a care service. When I had to tell him NO or YES to his insistence that there be no care service, that he indeed needed “help”.

Maybe it was today when we sat filling out the healthcare questionnaire for the new doctor. The personal, oh so personal, questions I had to ask, had to listen to his answers. Questions you never imagined asking your dad or having to have him explain. Maybe it was when I had to explain to him about how he had to work the blood occult test kit as he politely told me, “no thank you, I don’t want to do that.”

As he now looks to me, or rather at me, for reassurance, for direction, for help, for rescuing, with questioning rummy eyes, which now look while pleading and searching for answers. . .answers I don’t readily have. The same eyes that were the ones I looked to when, as a little girl, I would call out each night for the various stuffed animals elected to guard and protect me throughout the night, as he’d throw them to me from across the room from their daily resting spot, thrown to my excited open arms in order for me to catch them, one at a time, as we performed our nightly ritual. . .

We all know parents aren’t exactly human. . .they’re a lot like the teachers I’ve spent a lifetime alongside–superhuman, not like mere mortals. They don’t have the same ills or issues as others. They are invincible and beyond the ordinary.
That’s their role is it not. . .?

Theirs is to provide, to guard, to protect, to lead, to guide, to always be there. . .

. . . as now the child reluctantly finds herself becoming the parent,
the lonely role of grown-up. . .

Train up a child in the way he should go;
even when he is old he will not depart from it.

Proverbs 22:6

Goose chases, passports and the times in which we live

Ok so I don’t know whether to scream in frustration, cry in frustration or to laugh in resignation.  I think I’ve figured out the entire root of my troubles. I can trace it back, all the way back, to the day I was born.  The first red flag.  I was born then immediately put up for adoption (and that story is for another day).  A wonderful couple was matched up with this new little bundle of joy and was to soon become a family.

My father (the one adopting me) tells of how on the night before they were to pick-up their new daughter, they were out eating with another couple.  The other couple wanted to know what my (soon to be) parents were going to name their new child.  My dad tells them that his mother’s name is Julia and that his mother-n-law’s name is Mary.  The other couple exclaims “that’s it!!!–you name her Mary Julia, but call her Julie.”   “Great idea.”  Who said that???  The rest is history.

That is the second beginning of all of my troubles, and remember, the first was the whole being born thing.

Life rocks along pretty well until it’s time to start school.  On the first day of school teachers start calling roll and are looking for “Mary.”  “Who’s that?!” I wonder– “my name is Julie.” “That Mary girl has my same last name”.  And so the story goes on and on, all the way through college.  I think I’m Julie but legally, I’m Mary.  Ok, I can live with that little piece of confusion.  I’ll just correct all the first day roll callers.

One day a nice boy asks me to marry him. I’m going to get married!  YAY!  Julie is to pick up a new last name.  And like all good southern girls of the day, who love things monogramed, I will be Julie, Maiden Name, New last name—the best of both worlds—–or so I thought.  Has anyone figured out yet where all of this is going ??!!

Once I’m married Social Security says I need to update my name on my card so I can still get paid at work and match up with who I say I am and so the Tax man, no doubt, can find me.  Ok.  I can fix that.  I’ll go stand in a very long line, wait and wait for my number to be called and change my old name to my new name.

But for some reason, a reason I do not know or recall, my driver’s license is still using my “legal” name.  Ok, no problem, it’s just one of my now many names, it has a picture, I’m good to go.

All of that is fine, that is until 9/11.  After 9/11 everything changes.  Everything changes for everyone.  We suddenly realize our lives will never be the same as we knew them to be.  The Government has decided it must now do a better job of identifying people. It must know who is or who isn’t a citizen.  I still don’t think they have this part down quite yet but I suppose it’s just a work in progress, kind of like the Budget…. but I digress.

The Government tells me via the DOT and Social Security that I need to have all legal documents match.  Ok.  I can do this.  I can take time off from work and go to the Social Security Office and wait in a long line, again.  I can wait and wait for my number to be called and change my name–again.

Whew!  Glad I got that over with!!!

Then the Pope dies.  John Paul II.  I am devastated.  And yes, I sincerely was (still am) a huge fan of JPII.  My passport…where is my passport??!!  AGH! It’s expired!!! AGH!!! I want to go to Italy for the funeral!!!  I need to get a new one!!!  However I can’t get one in time!! AGH!!!  But I still need to renew it.  So I do.

“What name do I use?” I muse to myself.  Well I still go by Julie, Maiden name, Last Name so there you go.  And a few weeks later, the Passport arrives…Julia (? hum), Maiden name, Last Name.  OK. That works. Good.  I can now go to Italy to pay my respects.  And I do.

And then a couple of years later my aunt wants to go to Paris.  And we do.  And then my husband wants to go to Vermont.  And we start to– but Delta says “hold up”!  The TSA agent at the gate states “Do you know your name with Delta, which is on your ticket, does not match your license?”  “Oh sure..see I go by Julie.  The other name is just my legal name….”  “Well I can’t let you go through this gate until both ticket and license match.”  “Are You kidding??!”  TSA agents don’t ever kid I discovered.  I tell my husband to go on to the gate and I’ll go back to the counter and get things fixed right up.  When is anything fixed right up at the airport??!!

I stand in a long line, staring back and forth at my watch.  Finally I get up to the desk.  “That will be $350 to issue a new ticket mam” I’m told.  “WHAT!!??”  My phone starts ringing, it’s my husband telling me Security says he has a knife in his bag.  I packed the bag, there’s no knife, “tell them that’s just my straightening iron”– but he is insistent and his voice is getting higher…something about jail.  I have to hang up, I have to figure out this $350 thing!!

I feel tears stinging at my eyes.  Finally a different nice Delta lady tells me it’s going to be OK.  She issues me a new ticket.  I dash to the TSA man.  This time he let’s me pass.  I see my husband. He’s looking very pale.  He’s putting his belt back on and slipping on his shoes.  He starts screaming in that “we’re in public so I can’t scream too loud but I need to scream voice”.  Seems our son who last had the bag had put a pocket knife in the side panel when he was driving back from a Spring Break fishing trip. Who knew??!!  But luckily the panic and horror on my husband’s face signaled to Security that he truly was as surprised as they were. They kept the knife, but let me take my husband.  Don’t know if that was too wise at that very moment, but again, I digress.

Then I retired and my aunt and I wanted to go back to Europe.  Remember the license, the passport, as well as for my name with Delta now, do not match.  But I’m going to Europe, heck yeah!  Surrrre you are.

We’re at the airport and I have to get Delta to issue me my ticket at the desk as I can’t do it on-line because I have so many names—but I’m still me and my pictures are obviously me so I don’t understand, what’s the big deal.  The agent is so nice and issues me my ticket and I’m good to go….or so I think.  There’s another one of those pesky TSA agents.  Do they ever smile??  She looks at my passport and my ticket.  “Why don’t these match?”  “Well you see, they do but Julie is the name I go by.  “It’s a nick name and we don’t honor nick names”  “Oh no it’s not, it’s the name I go by”  “Is it your legal name?  “Well, not exactly, but it is my name!”  “Let me see your license”   Long pause and held breath.  “What’s this name?”  “Oh that’s my maiden name”  more long pause and not breathing.  She finally waves us through. Thank God!! Europe here I come…….

Then there was the whole trying to get through the airport in Berlin when we were suppose to fly home. Another debacle I’m just too tired now to relay and you’re too tired to read….Just imagine all of the above  but it happens all in German.   As soon as I finally got on that plan I swore I’d get this passport thing straightened out once and for all!!!!  Righhhht……..

I call the Passport folks and begin my tale of names blaming all of it on my father.  As if that helps.  They tell me I need certified copies of this and that, sworn affidavits form 3 different people who have known me by all my names, more money, the correct forms, etc……

I look for birth certificates, high school diplomas, college diplomas, tax stubs, pay checks….AGH!!  Why don’t any of these match!!!???  Panic is sinking in as I’m beginning to realize I will never travel or leave this country again.  I call my aunt in Florida.  She has my baptismal record.  Good!  “Certify you know me and send it my way.”  I call the Passport folks again.  This time the nice lady tells me I just need a birth certificate, a marriage license and my drivers license, more money, a letter of explanation and I’m good to go.  Great!!  Now where is that marriage license……..

Fast forward to today.

I was married in Atlanta.  No problem.  Bet my license is there.  I look on line and I can go downtown to the Probate court and purchase a certified copy.  I haven’t been to downtown Atlanta in 30 years so I call my oldest and dearest friend who lives in Atlanta.  I tell her we have an adventure but she has to drive.  She’s in.  Off we go to the Probate Court.

Did you know you have to pass through security just like at the airport?  I began to panic about my whole name thing when I remembered this wasn’t the airport.  Whew!!  We make our way up to the proper office where I sign in.  Seems there are lots of folks wanting firearm permits. Go figure. That makes me a little nervous but then I remember I just want a marriage license.

The clerk calls my name.  I tell her what I need, give her my name, wedding date and proceed to wait as she scans the records.  Nothing.  She has nothing.  What!!??  Here’s my husband’s name, try that.  Nothing.  “WE’VE BEEN MARRIED 30 YEARS, WHAT DO YOU MEAN THERE’S NOTHING??!!”  At this my friend quips “guess you aren’t really married.”  At which all the clerks behind the counter start laughing.  I’m not laughing.

And then I remember.  I tell the clerk that I remember we had our blood test in Talladega, Alabama.  “TALLADEGA, ALABAMA?! my friend shrieks.  “What in the world for, Why?!”  I remind her that I am not married to a man who is a planner.  When he realized that we needed a blood test and the wedding was looming, he found  the closest place within driving distance, where we could wait for immediate results without having to go to Vegas –downtown Talledega.  Had we gotten the license there as well??!!

The Clerk told me to call the county office there in Talladega where I could probably find the help I needed —I needed more than help at this moment–a strong shot of liquor was sounding pretty good.  Once back outside I call my husband telling him I have no idea where our license could be–was it in Talladega?  “Talladega, why would it be there?” he asks a little confused.  I explain the whole blood test story hoping to trigger his obviously failing memory.  “Yeah, we got the blood tests there but we got the license in the county of Georgia I was living in at the time.” “ARE YOU FREAKING KIDDING ME??!!”  “WHY DIDN’T YOU TELL ME THIS WHEN I TOLD YOU I WAS GOING TO DOWNTOWN ATLANTA TO GET OUR LICENSE??!!”  He quietly states that it appears as if I am blaming him for this goose chase of a trip.  He assumed I knew what I was talking about when I told him I was off to Atlanta to get our marriage license.  Now he tells me he thinks I know what I’m talking about….damn straight!!  AAAGGGHHHH!!!!!!!!!

A now very long story short, I called the county office where I now thought my elusive license to be hiding and BINGO!!  Tomorrow I will pay $10, bring home a license, gather all of my other identifying information, write a check for $110 and send it off to the Passport Office.  I will light candles, have a novena said, and offer my oldest child all for a Passport, a Drivers license and a Social Security card to match.

And now the Pope retires and I don’t have a working passport.  Perhaps by the time we have the Conclave and our new Pope—I will be able to go pay my respects.  I will go.