There is value in paying attention to the past, living in the present and anticipating the future.
The New Year is a good time to look forward. Here are some of my expectations and hopes:
This month, this week, Downton Abbey begins a new season. Just a few days after that, Greg Maddux should be elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame.
Next month, I will have been retired for a full year. How will I celebrate? No plans yet…
In March, Ted Godfrey, Marty Kearse and I get together for our annual “Ho” weekend—just the guys!
In 4 months, Christians celebrate Easter. I also enjoy the annual semi-religious rite of the Masters Golf Tournament. My cousin Patsy Pennington makes sure some of the Aldridges get together for supper in Augusta at her home at least one day that week. In April, we will smell spring flowers. Hummingbirds will begin to arrive in South Carolina.
In May, the fish will be biting in the farm ponds around Batesburg.
June is the season for nuptials. Jenna and Thorne were married in June. This year Sally and I look forward to June wedding trips to Beaufort and Memphis.
In 7 months, we reach the peak of peach season in South Carolina. July 4 weekend is always a Big Deal with Sally’s birthday, Julie and Tom’s anniversary on the 3rd, followed by Hillbilly Day in Mountain Rest, SC, to celebrate our nation’s freedom.
In August, Sally and I will take a Silver Seas cruise with Randy and Diana Wright to Denmark, Poland, Lithuania, Latvia, Finland, Russia, Estonia and Sweden.
September: Football Season!
October: The smell of a bonfire in front of the Oconee County Mountain House every fall. When the time comes, distribute my ashes somewhere nearby in either the Chauga or Chattooga Rivers. Of course, October also brings the World Series!
November: Thanksgiving with the Craig Clan.
December: Christmas—All our family will be home for Christmas in 2014! Yay!
Of course, the next twelve months will also bring other surprises, both pleasant and less so. Every year there are illnesses, storms, economic frustrations and funerals. But, even in the midst of pain, life is full of grace.