Monday, October 3, 2016
Arkansas You Run Deep in Me
Asked tonight why did I pick Arkansas to come to work in back in 1991. My answer was simple…saw the ad for a Librarian in Pine Bluff, AR, and thought it was Arizona, so I applied. Well, that part was sort of true. Back in the late 1990’s when I was applying for placed we (first wife, mother of my children and I) decided to look in Western States. When I saw the ad, I at first thought it was Arizona…but before I sent in the application I did know it was Arkansas. At that point, with few Library positions available due to the hard economy of the 1990’s, I decided to expand the area to “west of the Mississippi”. Can’t get much further east than Arkansas and still be west of the Mississippi. Got the job, stayed because a) it is a nice state, and b) the retirement did not transfer to other locations, and c) the previous library director was asked to leave and they put me in his place, meeting my goal of being a Director of a Public Library within 4 or 5 years of leaving school. I graduated in August of 1990, became director in August of 1993, so three years was a winner. Also cannot rule out that Arkansas was where we were suppose to be…the rest is history.
The above song is a song which they played on the TV late at night, I think on Sunday night, when they use to shut down the transmitter for a few hours for weekly maintenance. The song really is “catching” to those who have lived in Arkansas or have been to Arkansas for any length of time. There are different versions, but they are all good. There are also some good “Razorback” videos and songs too…for after all, there are many Universities in Arkansas…but there is only one Razorback University, and they (University of Arkansas) get most of the money, most of the attention, and are the premier college when it comes to sports. So much so, they won’t play any other in state school unless it is in a after season bowl game or tournament. But that is a full blog all to its own. I can, and some day I probably will, write a blog about all the wonderful places you can see if you take the time to visit Arkansas....but that too will be for another day.
Entering the Ozarks in fall is a nice time…another few weeks and the hills will be full of fall colors, right now they are just starting to come out.
And there is always that “good old home feeling” as I cross of the Arkansas River. I can remember the time I was in Colorado when I was able to “step” over the Arkansas River…but that is over a thousand miles away from where it is so wide and full here in the Fort Smith area.
Even Skruffy seemed to know that she was back home in Arkansas. Well, I think if she is my lap, she is at home no matter where she is at.
As I thought…she was asleep in just a few minutes…
Besides having my yearly doctor’s check up, which I do in Arkansas because my insurance is still with the Library and is based in Arkansas, we also come to visit friends and family. Today it was family. This is Sophie (left) visiting with Marcia at the Independent Living Facility that Sophie lives in. She has been here for nearly two years now, and it happens to be only 10 minutes away from the Springhill COE park that we stay at. Sophie turns 93 years old this year, or early next next year. She is very sharp, lives in a one bedroom apartment by herself, and needs very little help considering she is nearly 93 years old. Can walk slowly with a cane, also walks with a walker, and also has a Jazzy brand mobility chair. We went out to dinner with her and her son “Jimmy” (as she calls him) and his wife Pat along with two friends who were also visiting them who are also traveling in a motorhome. Sophie drove her “Jazzy” right up to our car, got out of the chair, walked right into the front seat of the car and got in just as easy as I get into the driver’s seat! It was sure nice seeing them again, and meeting James and Pat’s friends who are from Arizona (sorry, couldn’t remember their names, but nice people for sure!)
Tomorrow…off to Little Rock.