Saturday, March 21, 2009
It's a small world after all
We live on a little island just south of Charleston. It is called Wadmalaw Island and it only has around 2000 inhabitants. Most of the time, I just tell people that I live in Charleston because it is easier to find on the map. Our island doesn’t have a gas station or a grocery store. There is a very small general store that sells lunches and two businesses. One is the Tea plantation (the only one in America by the way) and the winery (Irvin house vineyards). As you may know, my wife works at the winery which is about a mile past our house. About a mile in the other direction is a small community (4 houses) that is being built by Habitat for Humanity. Most of the work there is being done by volunteers.
Yesterday at the winery, a couple stopped in that has been working on the Habitat project for the past two weeks. They came all the way from NY to work on these houses and were staying there in an RV. While they were at the winery they mentioned that today they were going back home to Alfred NY. My wife quickly picked up on the town name because that is where my mother is from. It too is a small town in the up state portion of NY. It has about 10,000 inhabitants now but was much smaller back when my mother lived there. In fact, back then, everyone in the town was either a relative or a really good friend.
After I got off work yesterday, my wife and I went up the street to visit this couple to see if I knew them or their family. When the woman came out of the RV, I almost died. She was the spitting image of my grandmother. I mean if they were side by side, you would swear they were twins although this woman was closer to my mother’s age. After introducing myself we compared notes and yes they knew some of my relatives. Remember the story a while back about “What happened to Luke”? In that story, I told about a young cousin of mine named Mike. Well this man was good friends with Mike and they even belonged to the same social club. Small world isn’t it. Now I am wondering if this woman and my grandmother may have been somehow related. A lot can happen in a small town.
Many years ago, we went to Alfred for a family reunion. Because there were so many people visiting the town, and only one motel (the Squirrels Nest Motel), some of us kids were going to stay in my cousins hunting camp which was just outside the town. It wasn’t hunting season and the place would normally be deserted. We planned on spending the night up there and then taking a nice early morning walk to see if we could spot any wildlife. And we did see some wildlife, just not the kind we expected.
That morning when we woke up, it was very foggy outside. We all headed down the dirt road being quiet so as not to spook anything that might be out there. As we walked quietly through the fog, up ahead we saw a car pulled off to the side of the road. My cousin signaled for us to be quiet as we approached the car. The windows were fogged up but not enough that we couldn’t see inside. My cousin went right up to the car and smacked it with his hand and said “morning Bob” (not his real name). The man and woman inside the car quickly grabbed their clothes and covered themselves. Then we headed down the road back to the camp. My cousin told us that the man was a prominent person in town (I won’t say who) and the lady was a waitress. They were both married but not to each other and had a total of 13 children. Talk about a small town scandal.
How is that for a small town story?
Have a great day,
Photo from Pixar