I have been talking to dead people. Searching for long lost people.
Hoping they will speak to me, or at least tell me where they- and I-
come from.
My parents divorced when I was two years old. They both remarried,
but I never saw my father again. Times were different. Choices were
made and new lives were forged… At what cost…? He didn’t show any
interest in knowing how I turned out, whether that was his choice or
not, that is how it was.
From time to time I wondered the how, why, and what if, of this.
Obviously he had no interest in me, so, as a young man, I had no
interest in him. We lived in the same city, but to my knowledge we
didn’t run into each other, though later I found out that we lived six
blocks apart, and drove the same model auto.
As I got older, this subject appeared less and less in my life. I
had, and have, a good, no, very good life. A wonderful wife, a
fulfilling time on the planet. Music, adventures, close friends, all
the things that make a good life.

One afternoon, after we got home
from work, I was wandering from one room to another, the television on
in the background, five o’clock news on. A fire. A death. A name. Wait! What?! My
father…  That can’t be the name I heard. It was… Killed in a
fire. I quickly double checked the phone book for an address, like
that would make this a big bad mistake. But the phone book
chimed in its bad news. It was him…

Time has passed. Lives are different, so, there was no need to involve myself. However, my lovely wife, and my sister went to the visitation, to see who these people were, that abandoned me… They were all a bit surprised. Both my family, and ‘the other family’.  A half sister that didn’t know I existed, met Maggie and my sister. My sister knew the half sister through work connections. “What are you doing here?” ” My brother is your half brother”. “Well, that explains the photo of the little boy, Timmy, on dads dresser, all these years”… Whoa… That was a showstopper….

Jeannine got my half sisters email address, so we corresponded a little, but, none of the other family were interested, and, the half sister fell by the wayside, after a couple weeks.  So much for a reconciliation…  But since then, I have been drawn more and more, to searching my roots/ancestors/genealogy.  I know I am 3/4 Irish, and have this low constant rumble of want to know where in Ireland my bloodline is located. I can’t say that I want to meet any of my living family here, since they are not interested in me, but, I am really drawn to the ones who have passed on, that made the journey to the United States, for a better life.  Who were they, what were they like, where were they born, lived, and decided to leave?

Hoare Abbey

I have in the last week, spent hours trying to find out those answers, but, they are very good at keeping a secret.  I have found my great grand father, on the male side. Where he came from, before crossing the Atlantic, is still a mystery. The Great great Grandmother was a little easier. Her family is from Count Cork, but that is the end of the trail for this week…

So, here in the cornfields. in our little town, we have a grocery store crisis brewing. For almost a hundred years, we had several little independent grocers, of which, two, which became Hilander, and Loglis, were the two largest. Both were locally owned til 10 or so years, ago. Then, the family who owned Hilander, wanted to retire. The chain, Kroger bought them. Ok, not bad for the first year, then service and selection plummeted like an Acapulco cliff diver. As best I can recall ( it gets confusing) Loglis were sold in the same manner, to Schnucks, out of St. Louis. A couple years later, Kroger sold the Hilander chain to Schnucks, who now owned the bulk of supermarkets/grocery stores in town. Enter more Acapulco cliff diving of service and selection.
A year or so ago, a Meijers decided to come to town. We have a Woodman’s, from Wi, here, and it’s a pretty good place to shop, but not as handy as the several aforementioned stores. With the Meijers monster coming to our part of the cornfields, Schnucks, displaying their amazing lack of business ability, started closing the stores they had recently acquired.
First, the one in our neighborhood, which, had, in the last four or five years, turned into a store straight out of the ‘hood. Not a good place to go. Along with that, they cut back every employees hours to part time, thus cutting pay and benefits. They are now in the process of closing every other store in town. More than half a dozen in an area of 200, 000 people.
In a brilliant stroke of business sense, Schnucks has managed to destroy a century of local business, unemploy hundreds, and remove any local grocery stores from around the entire city…

Thanks, Schnucks, for your brilliant business strategy, and, dedication to community…. We really appreciate it…

Our 4th Weekend

Posted: July 7, 2014 in Updates

We had a lovely Independence Day weekend, thank you very much. Food. Friends. Fireworks. Foxes. Flowers.
Fun…

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A Niche Post

Posted: June 11, 2014 in Posting, Rockford Il

Hi
This is totally an AARP/local post. The store that my lovely wife works at, started carrying T-shirts that harken back to the last century. They are shirts from populate local business/attractions that disappeared in the ’70’s.
If you’re from my spot in the cornfields, and are around my age, you’ll fondly recognize most of these logos.

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A Year Ago Today…

Posted: May 28, 2014 in Updates

Exactly a year ago today, we packed our American suitcases & messenger bags, and boarded a bus. Off to O’hare airport, to land in Dublin Ireland, for a fantastic 10 days of Irish adventure.
We are still affected by it, a year later… Wish we were packing again…

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Memorial Weekend camping

Posted: May 27, 2014 in Adventures

We joined a few friends at a local state park, for weekend camping. All in all a good time. Music, camp food, kayaking, chatting… All the fun things of the start to summer

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Weekend magic

Posted: May 19, 2014 in Adventures
Tags: ,

We worked our posteriors off, this weekend, making our yard summery. Thank you, my wonderful wife, for having a green hand…

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