Surprise Visit

29 Mar

Unexpected And Unwelcome Guest At The Door?

“Better not go unless you check base with your family in Edmonton,” I warned Ed, my old neighbor from Saskatchewan. Ed had already told Ruby his wife, that they were going to Edmonton for Easter. My old neighbor was looking forward to surprising his family there. I suggested that showing up at his children’s door, without advanced notice, could backfire as they may not be home. “They won’t be away all weekend,” Ed scoffed.

Ed was convinced that he and Ruby would be welcome and that their family would be glad to have them visit for Easter. I hope it happens that way. Some folks are so gracious and relaxed about unexpected guests. Some people get anxious and disturbed by family and friends that show up at their door. They act like the unexpected guest is as welcome as, ‘Crazy Mary from Londonderry who lives next door to the cemetery.’


29 Mar

Overwhelmed By Uninvited Interest And Advice

It isn’t always a good idea to share what I am doing here with Ed, my old neighbor in Saskatchewan. He can be full of helpful ideas even when they are not requested. Yesterday, I shared with Ed that I have been dabbling in slogan writing.

He was quick to ask me if the slogan writing that I was doing was about pastoral work or the church. Before I could answer him, he was gladly offering slogans about me: “Tall talk of heaven, by a five-foot-five shorty!” “Beware of Pastors: they will call you a sinner!” Of course, Ed had a couple of labels that he hadn’t invented, but he liked, such as: “The church only wants my money!” “Church goers are hypocrites!” “The comfortable church pew is now empty and for sale.”

Now Is The Hour

13 Mar

Now Is The Hour To Change Your Present Direction

“Wrong way Sam, that is what we called the hired hand,” Ed told me yesterday. My old neighbor from Saskatchewan was complaining that things are going the wrong way in the province and the country. When he was a boy, they had a hired hand for the summer who was a champion of getting mixed up and making the simplest tasks a sure-fire, misfire. Ed spoke with no mercy for political leaders at any level, and he would say goodbye to every one of them as sure-fire, misfires if he had his way. The problem he admits is that when one says goodbye, another says hello.

I argued with Ed that changing political leaders may not mean that things will go in the right direction. Most folks admit that a change of direction is needed right now for others but not themselves. On a personal level, it is seldom the right time to change our ways. 


9 Mar

Sometimes The Hardest Person To Love Is Me

Ed, my old neighbor in Saskatchewan, wanted to know when he called last if I would like to contribute five hundred dollars towards his purchase of a new boat and motor. He assured me that I could use it anytime I visit Saskatchewan.

It seemed to be a great plan for him since we don’t get back to visit in Saskatchewan often. Another thing in his favor is that I’m not a fisherman. My connection to fish is salmon and tuna out of a can. Generously, I offered to loan him five hundred dollars for six months at twenty percent interest.

Ed felt that I needed to learn a lot more about loving my neighbor as myself. I agree with Ed that it often seems other folks don’t treat us as we would like them to treat us. There is a lot of talk about the love of neighbor, but it is far easier to talk about love than to act in love.

Red Sea

9 Mar

Between The Devil And The Deep Blue Sea

“Those in life, who complain, and blame, are always ready to take a bite out of us,” I told Ed, my old neighbor in Saskatchewan. “With some folks no matter what you have done or failed to do, they will make sure you hear about it,” I added.

Ed said that there might be some valid reason to complain about me, as he never found it too hard to find fault with me when I lived next door to him. Of course, I told him that the feeling was not mutual.


9 Mar

Good Curlers Can Still Face Better Curlers In A Bonspiel

Ed, my old neighbor in Saskatchewan, called Saturday to find out how my team did in our local bonspiel. I was at the banquet to end the event when he called, so I did not talk to Ed. I would not have had much to say about the bonspiel. Our team had a few moments of victory but not enough to count. If your rock misses by a quarter of an inch, it is as good as two feet. The difference between winning and losing can be minimal but only winning counts.

Although all members of our team struggled, I sure felt humbled by my own lack of consistency. I thought I saw murder in the eyes of my skip towards me a few times, but thankfully he did not act on his desire. I admit it might have been justifiable homicide.