What I used to do with my time

Dunderhead would be the right description for my inabilities using wordpress. I wrote and saved the draft and now can’t find it. Begin again. Oh boy. That is the summation of my present life. Well. It’s not that bad, but is that irritating.

Recall isn’t my strongest suit either and after a session with my computer guru, the reason for the self-interruption, I have no idea what I was talking about here. At any rate, never at a loss for words, I can always find something to talk about. But if you know me, you know that.

My daughter would tell you that when she was a child I hauled her all over three states and old cemeteries within them as I sought the headstones providing likely correct dates for family deaths. Genealogy is quite addictive, and before the computer’s burgeoning files on cemeteries, we walked many miles back and forth across green grass, peering and deciphering and photographing. Little kids don’t find that much fun, be assured. Those were the years she learned patience.

Aulenbach Cemetery in Berks County for my paternal genealogy, St. Paul’s for my maternal folk, and several cemeteries in South Jersey for most of my husband’s people, all found us munching sandwiches in the grass as we swatted bees and mosquitoes. Those countless afternoons eventually yielded a pattern of dates and names for branches of our comparative trees, and years later the computer would log them in orderly fashion that provided the picture of who we came from and where they rested.

This interest would lead us deeper into our histories, searching for plots in England, as we wandered the shires, successfully locating ancestors important and not so, leading us back to Rhode Island in 1660 or so. Katharin Ayars, wife of Robert Ayars had died in 1684, at the age of 42, of childbed fever. For some long time no one knew this woman existed in my husband’s history, thinking Hester (or Esther) Bowen was Rob’s first and only wife. But we couldn’t place her anywhere except on Brace’s Farm, in the late 1680’s. All Rob’s children were allocated to her, but the dates for their births belied that.  Then the Burying Ground -on Farewell Street- in Newport was catalogued. Bless you, saint (s) whoever you are! And there was Katharin. With her dates we could determine which children came from her.

Hester’s kin had moved to South Jersey and when Rob’s best friend and his family were all gone but one, he moved Hester close to her siblings. Rob built a house along the Cohansey, a stream with a tide, and plied the Delaware all the way to Albany with the bounty of fresh vegetables and fruit from what is still called the Garden State. New Jersey was originally known on maps as New Cesarea. Her family was strongly Seventh Day Baptist, sometimes known as Anabaptist.

I paid attention last night listening to the Republican debates with the worst panel of moderators ever to receive air time. They wanted to make Dr. Carson’s religion out as a cult. Ahem. He is a Seventh Day Baptist, people! SDB’s argue only about which day is the day of worship: Saturday or Sunday, decided by which you think is the first or the last day of the week. And they believe baptism should be decided by the one to be baptized, and at what age. That usually is determined by the understanding of baptism and the why of it. No cult.

Media representation has devolved from just stupid to plain stupid. There is no saving grace for this ilk. The attempt to frame the mind of the listener to fit the picture they wanted to paint was totally lacking in skill. Indeed, they were so poor at it that even the least informed could see their game. And that, folks, that thing that is their purpose had holes poked in its fabric by the very people they sought to denigrate. We can all stop worrying and just start laughing at those assigned to lie to us. They are so poor at it as to be embarrassing. Goodness, hope they never have serious work to do!

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