My wonder years

How cute
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A couple of Christmases ago my mom gifted to me and my sisters our choice of photos from her old photo albums. She had dumped them all into a large box and we spent all day sifting through them. Call it bobbing for memories. It was a unique gift with immeasurable value. Not everyone has photos from their wee lil’ years. My wife doesn’t. My closest friend had all his childhood photos eaten by a fire several years back. Some people just had parents who never took photos (an issue Gabby does not have).

I gobbled up several dozen photos and later ordered them in my own special album. Every so often I like to glance through it. I try to see some semblance of Gabby and I (She actually favors strongly one of my sisters.) I also enjoy looking back at my class photos from elementary school. I have just about every grade. The one above is from Mrs. Burgess’ second-grade class, circa 1981. That’s twenty-five years and thousands of No. 2 pencils ago. I’ll let you guess which one is I.

When my stepdaughter first saw this photo she expressed shock. “Wow,” she said. “You sure had a lot of black people in your class.” Hmmm. I’d never really considered the racial composition of my youth, but looking back, yeah, I was part of a rainbow connection. That photo sports a racial blend you just don’t see often here in the mountains. Back home it was normal. At least, I think it was.

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Still lookin’ good after 15 years

Molly, Molly .. why you bugin?

I see Molly is. As Eric Church asks, How ‘Bout You?

Thanks to all who responded to the query on a 15th reunion for the grand ‘ol Class of 1991 from South View Senior High. (Just ignore Greg’s mixer idea. He knows as much about politics as World Cup).

The home football game idea appears to be a good one. Here’s the 2006 home schedule for the Tigers:

Aug. 18 – Westover
Sep. 1 – Douglas Byrd
Sep. 15 – New Hanover
Sep. 22 – Lumberton
Oct. 6 – Terry Sanford
Oct. 20 – Cape Fear

I’m cool with any date. September 1 is my fave, since I’m planning on being in Raleigh Saturday afternoon for Appalachian’s scheduled victory over NC State (sorry Bob). I’m told that game should kickoff around 6:30ish. So I’m down with a Saturday afternoon at a nice public park. (They do still have some down there, don’t they?)

So please leave a comment and let me know what date works for you. Then we’ll look to put together some type of Saturday event. I like Winnie’s ideas, but I’m not sure if we want to put that much effort in a 15th when most people are instead holding out for the 20th (right Jay and Christie?). But I’m game for anything as long as it’s not too much of a burden on anyone. I’ll do what I can from afar.

How about a 15th party


There has been talk amongst a few 1991 Tigers of a small 15th reunion get-together. Nothing big or overdone like the big One-O, but a nice group lunch or dinner. A few suggestions –

– Picnic lunch at Hope Mills Park this summer

– A Saturday event after a Friday night home football game

– Meet at Oktoberfest Internationale in October (that fair in Fort Bragg)

– Kegger at the Nazario residence

Let me know what you think by leaving some comments to this post. And feel free to spread the word.

Coach Capel

Following up from an earlier post, Appalachian did indeed beat Jeff Capel-coached VCU last Monday here in Boone, 51-47. I had my photographer friend snap me a photo of Jeff while he roamed the sidelines.

I wanted to start a chant to catch his attention (Steve McRae suggested yelling “Ron Miller!”) but the crowd – though small – was actually loud enough to drown out a lone dude making no sense. Besides, my buddy preferred yelling “Jason’s better!” I’ll let you Carolina fans figure that one out.

The photo above really doesn’t do justice to the fact Capel is starting to resemble Coach Miller. Gut? Check. Thinning up top? Check. Yelling nonstop? Check. Nasty underarm sweat stains? Oh my stars and garters, check.

Still, it was cool seeing a youngster from SVHS roaming the sidelines.

I hate I missed this

Big day in Hope Mills, especially for Renouard’s folks:

It’s taken seven months to finish, but the bridge in Hope Mills along Lake View Road is finally complete. The bridge washed away more than two years ago when flood waters overtook the Hope Mills dam and drained the lake.

A ribbon-cutting ceremony marked the re-opening of the once washed away Lake View Road, and for one family, it was a day that couldn’t have come any sooner.

“It will save us time and trouble, and with the gas situation there is now, it’s a tremendous savings for us,” Renouard Sanders said.

The Sanders family isn’t alone in its celebration of the road opening. For more than two years, residents had to find alternate ways around the road, but now, one month after the project’s deadline, work on the bridge is finally finished.