Friday, July 8, 2016

Another Feather in My Helmet

I truly was going to go downstairs to get a turkey feather (from my turkey feather collection, of course) and stick it on my helmet to get a picture that would match the title of this post, but it’s hot, my legs are tired, and I’m almost ready for a nap.  Thus with much less visual fanfare than I’d hoped I present this post in honor of my having ridden the Piaggio 19,000 miles so far.  

I was pulling into my Mom’s driveway when I looked down and noticed that I was only nine miles short of the milestone, and the sky was darkening.  With thunderstorms on the way I cut my visit with Mom a little short so I could get in the nine more miles before the sky would open and drench me.   I rode about four and a half miles away from the neighborhood (Mom only lives two blocks over.) and then turned around and eventually crossed the Susquehanna to get to a relatively flat residential area where I knew I’d be able to pull over exactly as the odometer crawled over to mark the new record.  It was here that I officially marked the achievement.  

 As always, when I cross off another thousand miles, I take a few pictures of where I was at the time so when I’m decrepit enough to ride little more than a rocking chair someday, I’ll be able to remember where I was and when I was there to knock off another thousand miles.  

Looking ahead now to 20,000 miles!

 On a sadder note that has nothing but everything to do with my riding a scooter, my beloved Aunt Betty left us two weeks ago.  It was her husband, my Uncle Andy, who I mentioned in my very first post, who first introduced me to scootering when I was still of pre-school age.  He and his brother-in-law had rented a couple of scooters just to ride on around the valley, and he gave me a ride on what I remember as a gorgeous emerald green classic looking model.  We didn’t go far, but it was an awesome ride to me, and for all my life, till I was in my 40s, I hung onto that memory as one of the best of my childhood.  All those years later, it was a huge factor in my deciding that I wanted to get a scooter. 

Uncle Andy died in 2002, and for the past 14 years Aunt Betty longed to be reunited with him.  Yes, she knew what the price of that reunion would be, but still she knew that she wouldn’t really be happy again until she was back in his arms.  When my dad, her brother, died in 2012, she wanted to be with him too.  As she was dying all I could think of was how happy she’d be.  I was sad.  I cried when I realized that I’d not see her again in this lifetime.  Moreover, though, I rejoiced in the unshakable faith that she’s exactly where she wants to be. 

Two weeks before she was taken to the hospital from the nursing home where she’d lived for the past year after breaking a leg and never really recovering her ability to walk alone, we took her to her home for one last visit before putting it on the market.  She, my sister and mom, and my cousins shared a last meal with her there, and afterward I posed for this picture with her, the last in which we’d be together.  

Eternal rest grant unto her, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon her.  May her soul, and all the souls of the faithful departed, rest in peace.  Amen.

And just like that I got home from my next ride and there on the grass was lying a blue feather.  Into my helmet it went for the picture I'd intended at the beginning of this post!



Scootin' Fool said...

Sorry for your loss Joe.

On the other hand, very glad to hear of your milestone.

Joe said...

Thank you on both counts, Paul. Still praying for you to do well with your exams!


kz1000st said...

19,000 miles! Way to go Joe. So sorry about your Aunt. She had a good run but no one likes to see a loved one pass. Stay strong.