I must say, a truck load of people showed up for our housewarming/open house. We told the caterer to prepare enough food for 100 people, and at least that many people came. Ginnie set out eight dozen (96) paper plates, and they were all used up. That?s the best we can do for a count.
We had a guest book for people to sign, but you know how that goes. Some do, some don?t, which put a real strain on Ginnie writing ?Thank yous.? The telephone book, Google and Church Directory only go so far when it comes to looking up addresses.
Then there was the problem of figuring out who brought what. In the heat of ?howdies? it?s hard to keep track. We?re still trying to figure out who brought the pretty blue vase, and bottle of wine. If you know, please let us know so that we can send proper ?thank yous.? We hadn?t really intended for people to bring housewarming gifts, this was as much an open house as anything. But the gifts are appreciated. One couple?s gift was the chairs we used at the tables. I knew we didn?t have enough chairs. A lady at church told us to ask so-and-so, that he had plenty of chairs and would loan them out. I asked the guy, and he said, no, he didn?t loan out chairs, but as a housewarming gift he would pay to have rental chairs delivered. I was flabbergasted, but it was right nice of him, and it worked out perfect. Purt?n near everyone who needed a place to sit while eat?n were able to park it.
People from our Presby Church in Mt. Pleasant came as well as Ginnie?s former Presby Church in Ottumwa. What tickled me immensely was that some of my Empty Nest readers came from far and wide. I had put an open invitation in my weekly column, and readers came - even 92-year-old Wilbur Swindler, from Ottumwa. He got lost on the way, and wound up in Missouri, but eventually found us. Wilbur was particularly pleased to see Buddy, and Buddy him. A ?Chris? from Fairfield, I think, brought a homemade pumpkin pie - delicious! She didn?t sign the guest book so we can?t send her a ?thank you.?
An interesting guest was a fella who happened to run out of gas right in front of our house. He walked up to the garage. Someone said, ?Get in line,? and he did. After eating, he thanked me for the food and asked about gas. I showed him where the gas can was and told him to use what he needed, replace it and bring the can back. At the end of the day, I noticed the gas can was full and back in its place. People are really pretty honest, especially when you feed?m.
Many people thanked us for having what they called, ?An old-time get together,? and that, ?People should do this more often.? As I explained, this is Ginnie?s and my version of a ?blowout.? Get?n up there in years, we?ve become what you might call, ?socially conservative.? I don?t drink anymore, and don?t even like to leave the house after dark. An all-night shindig is not our version of a good time. I could never stay awake, anyway. So, a wingding like this on a Sunday afternoon is just about as wild as it gets for us. And having friends visit is God?s blessing.
The only thing missing was a band. Some live country western or heavy metal would have been the cat?s meow. Maybe next year. However, a lady from Fairfield, Joanne Ancell, one of my readers, showed up with a fiddle. Yep. She?s known far and wide as ?Fiddl?n Granny.? She says she likes to ?play around.? After eating she commenced to entertain us with ?Chinese Breakdown,? ?You Are My Sunshine,? and ?Golden Slippers.?
Have a good story? Call or text Curt Swarm in Mt. Pleasant at 319-217-0526, email him at firstname.lastname@example.org or find him on Facebook. Curt?s stories are also read at 106.3 in Farmington.