The Fourth of July went so well this year. As always we ended up visiting my father’s relatives in Hilldale for a few days. The weather was perfect for anyone who enjoys the heat. Most of the kin showed up. Mary Anne and Steve, as well as Michael, Sam and Bridget, were here. Unfortunately, though, Erin wasn’t available. My mother still has lots of trouble with her cancer so she couldn’t go. Each of us took turns staying with her. I was especially happy to see Maelene, Joe and most of their family from North Tonawanda, and Vinnie from North Carolina, as well as Larry, Rose & their family from Massapequa. Anthony showed up from Brooklyn too. An inevitable reality of this occasion is the incessant reminiscing. Predictably we all got together & relived our past circumstances, especially the kin’s obnoxious references to all my supposedly bad driving. We also celebrated relevant birthdays and anniversaries. Rich, the Ronald’s son, got me an especially nice poster of Beatle Ringo Starr. Alas there was no softball game but I don’t play anyway. One night several of the cousins went to Friendly’s but I didn’t go. I was too tired. Unfortunately we didn’t go to Jitty Joe’s. Michael and I made sure we got our traditional cigars though. Music, religion and politics, and current events provided much conversation. I spent lots of time in the pool so I made sure I pot on lots of sun screen. The lay Carmelite meetings have been going well lately in Wilkes Barre, at the Little Flower Manor. So have Fr. McKernan’s men’s group meetings at Our Lady of Sorrows. Recently Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Church at St. Joseph Marello Parish, on William Street in Pittston had their annual bizarre. I made sure I spent around an hour there each night. It was a very nice time. My mother still needs a lot of medical attention but we’re keeping track of it well. Aunt Lauren, Uncle Frankie and Fran come over fairly frequently and Mary Anne and family come in whenever they can.
Easter went really well considering all our trouble lately. Mary Anne, Steve, Michael and Bridget showed up from Long Beach. Sam was visiting his other grandmother in Florida. Erin was with her family in New York. Uncle Frankie and Fran were both here and Aunt Lauren and Uncle Jim paid a visit too. All worked out except that it was entirely too fattening for me. Unfortunately Michael and I didn’t get any cigars , nor did Steve go for his usual ice cream trip. As always there was trouble with lectoring. Gabrielle’s mother called and asked me to lector for Gabrielle on Easter Sunday so all their family could be together at the Easter Vigil. Jared called and asked me to cover for him on Palm Sunday. I ended up being one of the lectors at the Holy Saturday Vigil anyway. The lay Carmelite meetings have been going well. Last week’s meeting was cancelled. I went to Rose Chairge’s on Luzerne Avenue in West Pittston a few weeks ago to get a haircut. My last haircut was at the Pittston Tomato Festival in the summer. A few days ago the Wyoming Free Library, in conjunction with the Methodist church next door, had one of their regular book sales. I made sure I got a few books, as I always do. There was quite an interesting selection. I even found “The Awakeners” by Sherri S. Tepper. I first heard of her when I took Marlene S. Groner’s ethics class at S.U.N.Y Farmingdale a long time ago. For that class I was forced to read “The Gate to Women’s Country”.