Want to know about my very first date with a boy?

The truth is – I have a facebook page (if you want to be my friend, just ask), and I’m afraid my facebook friends are going to quit being my friends if I don’t respond to some of their requests every now and then.

I resisted having a facebook page for a long time, finally caving in when all my children, daughters-in-love, oldest granddaughters and nieces and nephews signed up for one, and I was afraid I was missing out on all the fun.

Facebook has also been a place where I have been able to connect with friends, but I have a love/hate relationship with it. I’m easily overwhelmed by all the applications and bells and whistles – and when it becomes too overwhelming, I’ve been known to delete it and start over again weeks later.

Much of what overwhelms me about facebook is the gifts and flowers and flairs and coffee and causes and all manner of stuff that comes my way. It’s all good stuff, but I feel obligated to respond in kind, and I’m overwhelmed. I’ve grown to understand my limitations – when I’m overwhelmed I tend to spin my wheels and accomplish nothing.

Recently I have been “tagged” multiple times for the “25 Random Things” meme on facebook, and as my sweet friend Tiffany put it – I’m caving into peer pressure and responding just this once. Regular Pollywog Creek readers know how horrible I am at responding to awards and memes. I really don’t like to talk about myself, especially when God is doing amazing things all around me, and everything and everyone else is so much more interesting than I am.

Emily said that my “25 Random Things” list is a story and not random at all. What can I say. One thought just leads to another. Will it work if I just insert random photos from life on and around Pollywog Creek over the last few days to comply with the random part?

25 (or more) Random Things

1. My birth certificate states that I am Patricia Ann White.

2. Throughout my life I have been known as Tricia, Patty, Patsy, Pat, and Patricia by various members of my family and friends.

3. Before 1st grade, my family called me Tricia.

4. I decided after I started school that I wanted to be “Pat” because it took less effort to write my name on school papers than Patricia or Tricia.

5. That was fine with my mom and dad because all along they had wanted to have a “Pat and Mike”…

6. And that is exactly what happened. I have a younger brother named Mike.

7. Most people close to me call me Pat or Patricia…

8. But now that I am well past 1st grade, “Pat” has become my least favorite because it seems to cause gender confusion for people who don’t know me and…

9. It doesn’t make it any easier that I have several close friends whose husbands are “Pats”.

10. My husband’s name is Louis and a church directory once listed us as “Pat and Louise Hunter”. See what I mean?

11. My husband and I are native Floridians from the central part of the state – characterized by citrus groves and cow pastures rather than beaches and flamingos.

12. I grew up in the 50’s when it was perfectly safe to walk a half mile to school through an orange grove and never worry about being kidnapped.

13. My favorite memory of the elementary school just beyond that orange grove is the cornbread and chocolate milk they served us after recess.

14. When I was a little girl I wanted to grow up to be a concert pianist. Only problem was that we didn’t own a piano until I was a teenager, and by then I thought I had better things to do than practice piano.

15. I did play the flute and so did my best friend.

16. Band was the best part of school from junior high on.

17. My first date with a boy was to a dance after a football game in junior high.

18. We wore suits to dances back then, and mine was a dark blue wool.

19. Our parents drove each of us separately to the dance and picked us up when it was over.

20. The following Monday I was called into the school office and informed that my date had developed scarlet fever over the weekend and I needed to go to the doctor and get a shot of penicillin.

21. It was a long time before I went on a date again. Do you blame me?

22. For many years my favorite colors were yellow and orange.

23. My favorite car ever was an orange VW Beetle, but after we married, Louis wanted to trade it in on something with a little more leg room.

24. Speaking of orange, I look like I died if I wear yellow or orange.

25. My favorite colors are now blue and pink.

26. I went to my senior prom wearing a yellow dress (before I knew how awful I looked in yellow) – a dress that I designed and my brilliant seamstress grandmother created.

27. Underneath that beautiful yellow prom gown I wore a cast up to the knee on my right leg.

28. I learned to drive my first car – a stick-shift – while still in that cast.

Yes, that’s more than 25. Y’all might have noticed that I sometimes bend the rules – the ones that don’t count.

This past Sunday we attended the funeral of Abuela, my beautiful daughter-in-love Lizbeth’s (Michael) grandmother, who passed away at the age of 92 some time shortly after her morning coffee. Her mind had been sharp and her heart big until she breathed her last. That’s the way I’d love to go on to glory, too, wouldn’t you?

Is it alright to say that I loved a funeral? I hope so, because I did. Maybe it was because I really didn’t know Abuela. She didn’t speak a word of English, and it’s difficult to get to know someone with whom you can’t communicate.

Abuela’s funeral was in Spanish. I know about six words in Spanish. Louis, Emily and I sat in the back row and just followed everyone else – we stood when they stood and said “amen” when they said “amen.” The words to some of the songs were on an overhead, and Emily and I did attempt to sing them. The pastor occasionally repeated the prayers in English, but most of the service was in Spanish. In jest, I asked Emily if anyone would notice if I listened to my iPod during the service. I decided that silently praying for those who were grieving was a better option.

Though I could not understand most of it, the spirit in that service was sweet, sweet, sweet – the prayers, scripture, eulogies, hugs, tears and music – most in Spanish, but some in English. Michael – a gifted singer, musician, and worship leader – sang Matt Redman’s You Never Let Go – a beautiful reminder of God’s tenacious hold on us as we make our way through the thorny and difficult places in this life.

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