Sometimes unfortunately it takes a tragedy to reunite the family
I took a little trip north last weekend, the last time I saw Thelma, a first cousin of mine on the Ellzey side of the family. She was the first – I only hope – of my loved ones to die from complications from COVID-19. Thelma Brown Early, the second daughter of my father’s older sister, Opal Brown.
Frankly, I barely knew her. After leaving high school, our families rarely got together. She was about six years younger and lived over 250 miles away.
She left behind a husband, daughters and grandchildren, most of whom I don’t remember meeting except at the funeral of another relative.
I arrived at the services very late, the church being far in the boondocks of the parish Sabine. It was a special situation; the only one I recognized was the deceased. But life is full of special circumstances. My late brother, David, had married into the Early family – his first wife – and it turns out that among my neighbors on Bellaire Drive is another distant relative and also a relative of another of my cousins, on my mother’s side.
Detangle: We start with strong family relationships, our grandparents bond us all together with reunions and gatherings for special vacations. But when this generation dies, the basis of unity shifts to our parents. Unless we reside near them, our cousins lose importance, until a tragedy like a funeral brings us closer.
Coincidentally, as I write these lines, my wife has left for Mississippi, meeting her siblings and step-siblings (the family of her late father’s second wife), in the hopes of disentangling ownership from Pass Christian’s property he lived on until Katrina laid it all down. naked. This storm was the tragedy that brought them together.
Bill Ellzey:A missing rooster, transportation planning and bare feet
Caution! About half of the people I met on the way to send Thelma were still wearing masks, as I do every time I went out – provided I remember them. Mine is not a political statement. I am convinced that deaths from COVID-19 are real and that anything that slows the droplets in our breathing helps reduce the spread.
I am also convinced that vaccines are another way to prevent infection and have done two cycles just in case. Reported side effects are virtually nonexistent and I have now lost a parent to the virus. I strongly recommend masks and vaccinations for everyone.
The reader : Going up, it was the US 90 to Lafayette and the I-49 to Natchitoches, with in particular intense torrential rains near Alexandria. The vehicle in front of him was only visible because he was using his hazard lights. I did the same, to make sure the drivers behind me knew my car was there in time to avoid a collision. My headlights were on and the “high beams” were red, but since it was daylight, those fixed red taillights were not visible in the rain and spray of the road. The flashing hazard lights were bright enough that I could maintain a safe distance.
Fortunately, the rain stopped before I reached the dirt road leading to the Robeline family farm. It was muddy, sure, but passable, even in the dark.
Back: Back Sunday in Houma, I used US 171 in Lake Charles, then La. 14 in New Iberia and at home. It was dry, sunny, all the way, but there were “infrastructure” issues. It is not a familiar route, and several times I have missed important turns due to the lack of road signs and place names from the road department. Also, I was driving without my navigator – on a separate trip elsewhere. Maybe she would have kept me straight.