June 21, 2013
Today is Brian’s last day working in Florida. I am sure he will not accomplish much, but it will not be due to lack of trying. He is stalwart in his duties and will try to fit in every last meager morsel of work in between the well wishers who will be streaming into his office to bid farewell. Last night he brought home a 2” stack of congratulatory cards and accolades, and today promises more of the same. One piece of correspondence he received this week was from a friend who was also employed at the college and had recently moved to Central Florida. Her new home could not accommodate the animals she had in rural Northwest Florida, and she was willing to not only give us her two donkeys, but also deliver them to us. My first thought was, “Why in the world would I want donkeys?” My background and family of origin have given me the narrow scope of viewing anything as either of value or valueless. Keeping horses? Valueless. Keeping cows? Of value. You see, I cannot milk or otherwise utilize anything from a horse, but cows and chickens will satisfy many of my family’s nutritional needs. Therefore, I determined the donkeys were valueless, but maintained we would keep them because I wanted my friend to know her donkeys were in a place where they would be well tended.
Part two of this story, or How the Donkey Gained Value:
I have been friends with Carey for, oh, my entire life. After we grew up, Carey married and moved to her little piece of heaven in Georgia. I remained in Florida until this year, at which time I will move to my own Eden. Occasionally we see each other in person, and this week was one of those rare and serendipitous occurrences. Carey is raising chickens (look up “The Backyard Coop” on Facebook to check out Carey’s recent chicken escapades) and was extremely interested in the farming we were planning in Arkansas. I mentioned in passing our friend Lucy’s request to keep her donkeys. She emphatically stated (“emphatic” is an absolutely perfect word for Carey; she speaks with prosody) that donkeys are the perfect deterrent for bears and mused on how much more pleasant life at her house would be if she did not have that pesky bear breaking into her porch and staking claim on her dog’s kibble. Carey’s mom, who was also visiting (their family is just lovely) caught the tail end of the conversation and told me how wonderful donkeys were at keeping away coyotes. Well. Score one for donkeys, and bring on those long eared coyote clobberers!
This morning has been spent tidying up inside and out in anticipation of a 4:00 showing. As a going away gift, one of our friends gave us a statue of St. Joseph (see http://www.st-josephstatue.com/st_joseph_statue.htm?gclid=COnv18i99bcCFXQV7AodKhIATg) to bury in our yard in an attempt to quickly sell our house. I feel rather odd burying St. Joseph face down in my front yard, but was thrilled to see he had baby Jesus in his arms. St. Joseph buried in your yard until your house sells + Jesus rising again in three days = our house will sell in three days. Catholics. We are traditionalists, not superstitious. J