Although I love living in Pittsburg, I do enjoy our visits back home. We go as often as we can manage to do it. It provides a chance to walk or ride down memory lane. We are smart enough not to visit during the winter months of Milwaukee. You know, deicing the plane issues, reintroduced to the Hawk who is still as cold as ever. Although, the state of Wisconsin seems to be experiencing a record number in the secession of what is typically called Indian winters. Those from the east understand that to mean a string of unusually mild winters. Climate change anyone?
The book, Gracie Hall-Hampton, the Arkansas Years 1917-1953 was displayed by LitFire Publishers. The publishing booth display was during a six-day stint and at the ALA (American Library Association) Annual Convention – Expo in Chicago, IL.
To visit relatives in nearby Milwaukee, my wife and I stayed with her sister and her husband for almost fourteen days. As you may imagine you note the changes around town right away. You reminisce about the streets you roamed as a kid. You revisit people, places and things that provide many warm and fuzzy feelings about yesteryear.
Suddenly you are jolted from your stupor of a dream by the current resident’s action. The change in attitudes and environment are mind-boggling. People are driving crazy. They are running stop signs in Milwaukee, just like they are in Pittsburg. Now they’ve added the act of running stop lights. I actually saw a driver ask a city worker to move the street cone out of the way so that she could go around the other traffic stopped at the red light. He did, and she did actually run the red light. I know it was more than just a freak occasion because I saw an array of drivers running red lights time and time again, WTH. That entire behavior scene made me think twice before driving the rental through Milwaukee streets. Of course, I had no other choice but to drive the vehicle. And since the Convention-Expo was in Chicago, having to drive the ninety miles to Chicago was also a trip.
You listen to the TV news and get depressed at the violence committed by people on one another. The fact is one could have stayed at home and heard the same thing. That seems to be the state of our American cities these days. Then there is the slow and eye opening revelation that most of the people you knew have moved, left town or worst, died off. And that includes many of my relatives.
There is no escape from revisiting your own memories and beliefs during such a visit. Being at home allows you to compare eras, people and their behavior to the past. The fact that my daughter, Shawn Lynn visited Milwaukee during our time there also helped us to talk about the past. She is a fully grown forty-something young lady. Self-determination is not lost on this woman, yet she made us feel special that she is our daughter. She also reminded us that our nerves cannot stand constant chit-chat and older folks need time to recuperate after an evening of excitement.
Through it all, for me, there is nothing like being with family. The familiarity of it all is irreplaceable. I saw my sisters, brother, cousins and for a while, it seems like we never moved away.
But then I am a homebody. No matter where I visit, eventually, I am going to miss my house. Fourteen days is just about the length of time to be away from your personal residence. Unfortunately for me, I came back to the day to day occurrences of living at home. Yesterday it was a root canal to correct a tooth issue. Today I’m continuing to play catch-up and get back on schedule with my projects. Welcome home to me?
Peace, yet stay vigilant for our American rights. Make it a day in which Jesus Christ would be proud of you,
Codis Hampton II
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In a continuing effort to publicize my book, Gracie Hall-Hampton, the Arkansas Years 1917-1953, as noted I joined LitFires Publishing exhibit at this year’s ALA (American Library Association in June) Annual Conference & Exhibition in Chicago. Go to http://exhibitors.ala.org/ for the full details. Meanwhile look for my fifth book, Misguided Intentions to be published in August.
Get any of my books by visiting my Amazon.com Authors page at http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B017TYFKBI?ref_=pe_1724030_132998070
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Copyright 2011 Codis Hampton II, all rights reserved. A bi-weekly blog for your enjoyment