Busy Times

By Joe Rector

It’s a busy time of year for all of us. I used to have things that ate away at my time and kept me busy. These days, other people, organizations, and conditions demand my time, in addition to some standard occurrences.

Some of my time is spent with my brother Jim. We try to play golf once a week. Both of us are rather poor players, but it’s fun to knock golf balls around and just hang out together. Yes, we’d like to have better scores on our cards after rounds, but being together is most important.

Jim and I also find plenty of projects to keep us busy. Just today, we finished a two-day job at his daughter’s house. We cleaned a basement area at Mindy’s. Her house is an old one in Fountain City with plenty of yucky stuff that has accumulated over the years. We emptied the place, tore out a dilapidated workbench, and rearranged items. I built her a worktable for the basement, and we placed it in a convenient place. None of the work was that important, but that “hanging out” was priceless. We’ve been doing the same thing since we were wild little twin boys.

Aging has a way of eating up my spare time. I’ve visited doctors too many times this month. One trip had me in a chair at an ENT specialist. He checked me out, prescribed an antibiotic cream, and scheduled another visit in February for a check-up and a CT scan of my nose and sinuses. This week I am visiting an imaging center for a lung scan. It’s something that doesn’t cost me a dime, and it offers a look for anything that might need attention. I also visited the eye doctor and received a prescription for new glasses.

Earlier this year, someone talked me into joining the church choir. I discovered that hitting low notes still is a challenge, but I don’t do too badly. Besides, I’ve had fun working with the choir and the director Gage and the accompanist Paula, who keeps me in stitches during practice. I sang in the church choir during high school, and returning has been a blessing. I still might ask to join the praise band before long. That would take up even more time.

Christmas of course, is right around the corner. Amy and I will travel to Hendersonville for a few days to celebrate with our daughter Lacey and Nick and Madden. We also want to visit friends we made when we owned a condo down there. We’ll return to Knoxville in time to celebrate Christmas with our son Dallas. Our menu for the day will be chili and tamales. My Christmas shopping is completed. Like most men, purchases are limited to ones for my wife; she stresses and deals with the rest of the shopping. I don’t think she trusts me to do much more than pick up items she’s already bought.

While we are in Hendersonville, Amy and I will celebrate our 49th anniversary. Next year will be the big one, but I’m stunned every time I think about my dear wife having put up with me for so long. I am not an easy person with whom to live; I have quirks that would drive most folks up the wall. Some years have been rougher than others, but overall, we still love each other and enjoy the time we have together.

I hope you all have a Merry Christmas. Your reading my thoughts and gripes and praises has blessed me more than anyone can imagine. I hope that the Good Lord allows me to continue to peck away on the computer and create an occasional piece that is special to readers. This is the one thing that takes my time but rewards me for every second I spend.