P.O. Box 668
Saluda, SC 29138
Phone 864 445-2527
Fax 864 445-8679
BY RALPH SHEALY
I wrote a few year ago about my wearing balance bracelets.
I’ve worn out several, so I am currently wearing a yellow one.
After the tragic death of Saluda High band member Joye Andrews, I bought a "enJOYE Life" purple and black bracelet in her memory.
My sister Dibbie had some pink rubber bracelets printed up in support of Mitzi Ashley when Mitzi was diagnosed with breast cancer. I put on one of those.
Friday, at the Relay for Life, I put on an orange (you heard right, orange) bracelet in support of young Jacob New, who has just begun his battle against leukemia.
Old timers, remember Carmen Miranda. I would tell young people Chiquita Banana was based on her, but they wouldn’t know who she is either.
Carmen Miranda was a Spanish singer who wore Fruit on her head and wrists.
Well, my right wrist looks like Carmen Miranda’s. It isn’t so bad since winter came back in April and May, and I’m still wearing long sleeve shirts, but soon I’ll be wearing short sleeve shirts and will have a lot so ‘splaining to do!
I have a lined Saluda High wind shirt that I wore twice to football games this year.
Friday, May 3, I got the shirt out and wore it to the Relay for Life and it wasn’t enough!
Where’s global warming when you need it?
Considering the cold conditions, the turnout was great! Congratulations to everyone involved.
I don’t recall it ever being this cold during May in my lifetime.
Of course, it has been a long time since we’ve had the kind of rain this time of year, too.
Rain tends to cool things down. It also tends to make the grass grow.
Saturday afternoon, I just had to cut grass in the backyard. If I waited another week, I’d have to rent a Bushhog.
So, to cut grass, I put on a sweater and a coat. I pulled the coat’s hood over my head. That was a new grass cutting outfit for me!
Leading the singing, I see things the congregation doesn’t.
Sunday, for instance I saw Jacob McCary make a mad dash for the candle lighter.
Jacob was the acolyte, but forgot he had to put out the candles until we were halfway through the last verse of the final hymn.
Being the adult I am, I started getting the giggles when I saw Jacob rush for the candle lighter, then smile as he hurried down the aisle.
He made it!
Jacob took his normal position as the preacher was about to deliver the benediction.
Suddenly, Jacob started backing up.
It looked to me like he was doing the Moonwalk.
Then I figured out why he was walking backwards. Jacob had forgotten to extinguish one of the candles.
He was laughing when he put out the candle, and I lost it.
Naturally, everyone in the congregation saw me laughing, but I was in church and couldn’t help it.
Jim Padget was going to do some work at my house Monday afternoon, so I came home to let him in.
I wasn’t paying attention as I headed to unlock the front door.
I stepped on something and saw it jump.
IT WAS A BIG SNAKE!!!!
Somehow, after I screamed, I moved backwards like Jacob, but somehow I missed tripping over four or five planters. I think I was levitating.
I was in the middle of the yard, when Jim drove up.
I just pointed at the corner where the snake was now residing.
"Oh, it’s just an old water snake," Jim said, and scared it away.
I will say, if Jim hadn’t arrived, I would still be standing in the yard.
How did this experience affect me?
When I got back to the office, every time the front door opened, I jumped!
I hate snakes.
I was shocked and saddened when I saw Bill Padget’s name in the obituaries Monday.
Bill was an old friend from way back. We rode the same bus until we were old enough to drive to school.
It was on the bus we started having Carolina and Clemson discussions. Bill was solid orange, even though he graduated from Wofford.
Bill was very popular in school. He was president of the student body his senior year, and was a starter on the football team.
His mother, Pat Padget, was one of my favorite people. She taught art to many young people, including me. His father, Ben, was also well-liked and served on the school board for many years.
After many years way, Bill moved back to Saluda County, and his son Will graduated from Saluda High. Eventually, Bill moved back into the house where he was raised.
Last year, Bill’s wife got sick at work, and came home to lay down. A few hours later, Bill found her dead in bed.
This devastated him, but he went on
One of the last times I saw him was in Belk’s where he was Christmas shopping. We had a good conversation, like we always did, joking about Carolina and Clemson.
Bill and his wife are together again.
He will be greatly missed.
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