Finally back in the swing of things

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!! It seems like forever since I last wrote, So many things have happened, and so much is still the same. I hope you all threw open your doors and windows on New Year’s Eve, or the first to let the bad vibes out of your house. I hope all is going well for you and that the coming year will be a great one for you and yours.

Dec. 30 was such a busy day for Rose Hudecek. It started when Deacon Peter brought her Communion and conversation. Next to arrive was Marty, Joan and Janet Hudecek from Albany with a lovely floral arrangement of red roses and candy. A delivery from Catskill Mt. Florist brought a huge arrangement of white roses and lilies from the Ohio Hudeceks. Grandson David stopped by on his way to work, and Vicky Beckman stopped in with more flowers — just in time for a champagne toast. Phone calls from all the rest of the family, and opening up all of the cards received was next on the agenda. By 8 p.m. she was exhauseted, only to have it start the next day with more visits and reading Facebook posts. With all of the technology that Rose has seen, two are her very favorite: Facebook greetings, and Facetime with her great-granddaughters. I got to eat lunch with her on Thursday, Rose asked me to thank all of you who sent her birthday wishes. She appreciates it deeply.

The washout of Route 17 in Jewett has caused my friend Dot Giordano to live on a deadend street. The traffic is now being detoured down 23C, and Dot has no traffic going by her house at all. It gets lonely without the hum of the cars. She feels that she has been forgotten.

There will be Covid testing in the Town of Ashland, but it is only for those with symptoms, or who need clearance to go back to work, or to visit a loved one in a Nursing Home.

Blessed Happy Birthday wishes go to Mrs. Alvena Hitchcock who will celebrate her 103rd! Birthday this Saturday the 9th. She is the oldest living WAJ Alumni member as she graduated in 1934. She would love receiving birthday cards and you can mail them to Mrs. Alvena Hitchcock, Room 329, The Pines, 154 Jefferson Heights, Catskill NY 12414.

Last August I had a wonderful letter from Joan Myers who is Elsie Myers’ sister-in-law. Elsie worked at the Ashland Post office for many years, and will be celebrating her 85th birthday. Many Best wishes to you, Elsie and Happy Birthday.

Dottie Jacobs Dunham, and her husband, Jim, sent me a wonderful email thanking me for keeping them in touch with happenings on the Mountain Top. They send their regards to all who remember them.

We have many Cares and Concerns. Prayers and sympathy goes to the family of our former Postmaster for many years Kenneth Hunt who passed away last Saturday in Florida. Prayers and sympathy also go to Barbara (Averill–who grew up here in Ashland) Tubiolo and family on the passing of her husband Anthony, also last Saturday in Florida. He grew up in Grand Gorge and years ago they ran a quilt shop there before moving south. Condolences to the family of Martha Soule on her passing, and to Phil Balsamo and family on the passing of Phil’s wife Gabrielle. Get well wishes and prayers go to Art Rood, Clarence Soule who is recovering from a fall and subsequent surgery. Lula Higgins (who retired from Morse Wilson Insurance agency in Roxbury) fell and sustained many severe injuries. She was the organist in her church in Roxbury. Many of our friends have tested positive for the virus, and some just have symptoms: Wally Thompson, Tom Dignam, Amy Brabazon. We hope you stay safe and healthy.

AS I REMEBER IT

Starting a New Year.....Really

With “the virus” lurking around every corner, we had to compromise on our New Year’s celebrations. Did you have a family gathering, or are you a Zoom person. Did you watch the ball drop? Or just go to bed?

The weather has been crazy: First a lot of snow, then a lot of rain and the subsequent flooding. My sons spent Christmas Eve with me, since they were asked to evacuate at 3 a.m. Judy’s cellar flooded, roads in Jewett washed out. Then the cold and ice. What more could you ask from December?

Did you have a sled when you were young? Was it store bought, or Dad-made. We had may hills and back roads to play on. Not so much now. Occasionally, when I go to Jewett, I still hear the joyful screams of children going down some of the hills.

Did you ride your sled on your tummy and steer with your hands? Or did you sit on it with someone and steer with your feet? Did the person in back get scared and cover you eyes with their hands? Snow bank coming up and you are all upside down. Did you ever start to get on the sled and suddenly the sled is halfway down the hill without you? Did you ever take a running start with your sled to go on your tummy, and wind up doing a face plant? How did we ever survive childhood?

Ice skating was another great past time. I should have had skates on my butt as I could not skate standing. We only had a small area at Myron Sanford’s Windham House, which is now Christman’s, so I never really conquered the whole idea of standing upright on those skinny little blades. In my mind, I was doing twirls, jumps, backwards, forwards...in reality, I was scooting on my butt.

Now tubing is the thing, but only at the park. We used to take old inner tubes and cardboard and zoom down icy hills. We had our own tubing area. but no lift to take us back up the hill. Kids have it soft today.

Time changes everything. I sit inside and look out the window. The snow and ice storm has made my Rhododendron look like it is is full bloom. The evergreens are coated with the beauty of snow, and I sit and dream of days of yore when I would be out there with it all. Have a very Happy New Year!

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