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Observations: Mornings Before Sunrise

I was up well before sunrise this morning and brewing some coffee from some exotic locale in the South Pacific.  While waiting for my first cup I looked through email and discovered a fellow I know is selling his home.  His wife passed away some months ago and he now spends the better part of every year in Florida.  She meant much to him and I believe he doesn’t want the constant memories.  It’s a lovely place, near the canal and the southern end of the Delaware Bay.  Shockingly, he isn’t asking an arm and a leg for the property.  I can tell he wants out.


Judson was a local high school football star 50 years ago and then he went to the University of Delaware to play football.  For family reasons he left before graduation and became a pilot on the bay, guiding ships into and out of the ports in Wilmington and Philadelphia.  He became an elder statesman for the “moderate” wing of the state Republican Party and amassed some wealth.  He is best known as a local raconteur.  In recent years the word has developed a bad reputation but Jud is a storyteller.  He is a great party guest and a great talk show guest and I used to tell him he needed his own show.  He has no desire to entertain a daily audience.  During some guest spots we would talk off-air during breaks and what was always obvious was how deeply he cared for his wife.  Times change and I don’t believe we often anymore see the level of devotion for our loved ones previous generations had no trouble finding.  Often people publicly state their feelings about being devoted to a spouse.  Jud appeared to mean what he said. 


The house is beautiful and in the center of old Lewes, Delaware, a place seemingly as timeless as the rise of each morning sun.  There are more tourists trolling the streets than when Jud grew up there but after Labor Day the streets are still pretty much the same as the old photographs adorning the walls of some local restaurants. 


It’s a chilly morning here.  The coldest since sometime last spring and officially 39 degrees as I write and I was on the deck for a time after letting the cats out.  Katie is 17 and Sam is 18 but they both still like wandering near the house before sunrise.  I grabbed a hoodie from a closet, popped on a baseball cap and sat with them.  When I found my seat on the steps I had a normal human morning reaction after a night of pizza and on a warmer morning with windows open neighbors would’ve thought a woodpecker was active along the street!


I clutched the warm coffee mug and looked at the sky.  It’s a favorite morning activity.  There are planets and stars thick across the firmament.  They appear to have always been there and we believe they’ll always be there but they won’t.  Times change and people we know come and go and sometimes leave our lives and we never see them again.  My life has been filled with all manner of change the last 6 months.  I’ve tried to roll with the tidal wave but sometimes not with a willing spirit.  I don’t always have a choice!


The night sky isn’t a permanent feature of the universe but in our brief existence it sure seems as if it never changes.  That is until sun rise and then we can’t see the planets and the stars until the next evening cycle begins.  No matter.  For a few brief minutes before the sun pops up it appears a constant.  The air is still but for a rare passing car and then the bird songs begin and warn you one more day is available in your ongoing effort to finally get life right. 


Category: Opinion-Commentary


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