This past Tuesday night, at 7:00, I went to St. Anthony of Padua’s church in Exeter for the first night of Fr. Robert Barron’s Catholicism series on EWTN. During the day , each Tuesday, it’s at St. Monica’s Parish. It’s always at St. Barbara’s at night. Br. Patrick, of the Oblates of St. Joseph, was in charge. I sat at an empty table. A little while later a very nice young girl sat right next to me & introduced herself as Mallory. Since I have a lot of trouble with contextualizing, I entirely overlooked, at first, the fact that I see her at 8:30 a.m. Mass whenever I go to St. Joseph’s on Sunday. I can never help noticing her there. Surprisingly she’s not even Catholic. At the end there was a question & answer session. Yesterday I went to O. L. Mt. Carmel’s church on William Street in Pittston to give blood. My appointment was at 4:00 but, being compulsively punctual, I showed up at around 3:00. Unfortunately I forgot to remind them that it was for a double red cell donation so that’s probably not what they did. I was happily stunned to see that it was all over within about six minutes instead of the usual twenty minutes. The last time I was supposed to give blood I was entirely too ill with the flu. By now I’ve been going quite frequently, for such a long time, that the northeastern Pa. blood drives that several phlebotomists & I have gotten to recognize each other quite well. Amber, who was one of the ladies who showed up, reminded me that we’d already met before.
Yesterday, although it started out quite nice, turned into quite an absolute nightmare at about 2:30 p.m. Uncle Frankie always wants me to go to his house to pick up his mail when he visits Fran. He’s there for Father’s Day now. I went yesterday on my usual mostly daily trip to get the mail. As soon as I first left there was a major bolt of thunder & lightning. Because of its having been such a nice warm day I honestly fully expected it to be just another lovely spring shower. It was an absolute nightmare from hell. There was wind that got up to beyond fifty miles per hour, along with hailstones & zero visibility. I got the mail from his mailbox. As soon as I got back into my car it occurred to me that I couldn’t see through my windows. I couldn’t even so much as dare to try to leave. I tried to call my parents but their phone didn’t work. I didn’t have Gino’s & Michelle’s phone number. They live only two houses away from Uncle Frankie. I couldn’t even dare to get out of the car so the phone was my only hope. Eventually it calmed down enough for me to try to go home. It was a long slow trip down Eighth Street past Wyoming Avenue. There were all sorsts of fire trucks & other emergency vehicles out. Eventually I got home. Amazingly it stopped after only a very short time. Many people’s homes & trees were damaged. There was no advanced warning of anything bad. On television there was a major storm watch for a lot of Pa. counties until 9:00 p.m. Conveniently I wasn’t terribly nervous or afraid but the frustration really got me crazy.
Yesterday was Father’s Day. On Saturday afternoon Mary Anne, Steve & Bridget, along with their dog, surprised my parents by showing up & staying overnight. Steve, being Steve, got my mother, Bridget & me to go to Jitty Joe’s in Moosic with him for ice c ream. I got a bowl of praline ice cream. Early yesterday we all went to Perkins, on Rte 315 in Dupont, for a really nice breakfast. They were forced to leave early to pick up Sam at the airport. He was in Florida visiting his other grandmother. Michael & Erin were visiting her parents. Uncle Frankie has been visiting Fran for the past few days so I go to his house regularly to pick up his mail. I’m in the habit of attending 8:30 Mass each Sunday morning at St. Joseph’s on Sixth Street but yesterday I went to 11:00 Mass at O.L. Sorrows. After Mass, when I stopped at Unimart on Wyoming Avenue, I ran into Gino, Michelle & the kids outside the store. On Saturday morning I attended our monthly Lay Carmelite meeting on South Meade Street in Wilkes_Barre. We meet at the Little Flower Manor on the third Saturday morning of each monthe. We welcome new people who are interested in joining. Sister Mary Robert wasn’t available but Msgr. Grimaglia was with us. Unfortunately, O.L.P.H., my old grammar school on Wellwood Avenue in Lindenhurst, N.Y., is now closed permanently. On the bright side, Msgr. Bob Brennan, an alumnus of both O.L.P.H. & St. John the Baptist Diocesan High School in West Islip, N.Y. , has recently been named an auxiliary bishop in the Rockville Centre Diocese. Today is Beatle Paul McCartney’s seventieth birthday. We hall hope he has such an especially fab time.
The infamous Fourth of July Hilldale feeding frenzy is coming up. I just don’t have the strength or patience to handle it all. I know I shall get even fatter than I, alas, already am. I lose all sense of moderation at times like this. All the cousins have been, for the past couple of weeks, in quite a tither about it. It will be nice to see so many of my cousins get together. I can get along quite well with most of them. An unusually stupid (even for Pa.) thing happened last week. As I was pulling out of the Wyoming Free Library’s parking lot to make a right turn into the turn lane to go home, some simple~minded woman pulled, from Wyoming Avenue, exactly into the lane, of the parking lot, which I was in, flatly refused to yield to my right of way. She had a few kids with her. I’ve always known, for as far back as I can remember, that northeastern Pa. is well known as the home of a bunch of fruitcakes anyway but this was a particularly annoying stunt. She flatly refused to give me the satisfaction of yielding to me. I deliberately refused to let her have her way either at first. She could have very easily turned into the other lane & let me through. After a while I just gave up & let this creep have her way because I came to understand that I was dealing with an especially arrogant character who couldn’t be expected to give in. The way people drive around here is not to be believed & the fact that the police pander to pedestrians doesn’t exactly help much either. Father’s Day is coming up this Sunday. A very happy day is hereby officially wished to all the menfolk who qualify.