Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Another Legacy Is Written

 When our eyes and heart first fell in love with this old house,
  a porch swing hung,
in the place where one of our rockers now sits.
  We were looking for an old house
on this street
with character and porches. 
 In our opinion,
 this one had an awesome back porch
 and the possibility of a front porch (click on the blue words to read that story).
  We loved the street the house sat on and the alley behind the house was so quaint and useful. 
 When the "for sale" sign went up in the front yard,
we began to drive past and dream. 
 One day as we slowly drove down the alley,
 thinking and looking
 and trying to decide if to pursue our fascination
 with the house a little further,
we saw the owners sitting in the porch swing. 
 They were sitting close,
 there was plenty of room left in the swing for another person
 and he had his arm pulled tight around her shoulders. 
 It was obvious that they were happy
and enjoyed each others company.
  The porch was "A Romantic Porch" even back then. 
 We didn't know them or anything about them
 when we decided we wanted to buy their house.
Across all these years,
 there are some things we have never changed,
 such as this bumper sticker stuck to the bedroom door.
  I have no idea how long it has been there. 
 Obviously, it was probably stuck there
during one of his mayoral campaigns. 
 We have never changed it.
  Isn't that funny? 
 Our sons would protest its removal. 
Honestly, at this point, I might protest its removal.
Directly across the hall on another bedroom door is a sticker for the county volunteer fire department.
On the back of this closet door,
 scratched into the wood panel,
 one of their sons declared his love for a girl,
 not just once but twice!
It is darling.  
I fell in love with the inscription from the moment I saw it.
  Somewhere along the way,
 one of our children etched his name into the door panel also.
  In my opinion, that is precious too.
  The walls can talk.
I believe it is important to take good care of what we have.
I don't think we should deface property.
But for me,
 those are three reminders of
the hands of time,
 passing memories,
passing moments,
passing moments into days,
and passing days into years,
until life is spent,
and the hands have written our legacy,
one stroke at a time.
We've loved the family who lived in our home before us.
 They told us some neat stories of their 35 or so years here.
 This amazing man,
 the one who was on the porch swing with his wife,
 was the mayor of our town.
  He had an incredible ability to call people by name anytime he saw them.
 He made them feel special.
A few weeks ago,
 we ran into him and one of his devoted daughters at a local eatery.
  They were seated at a small table by a large window.
Philip said to me,
"Rachel, you've gotta get a picture of Mr. McClarnon.
 Just look how he is seated."
  Directly behind him,
 through the large plate glass window,
 we saw City Hall which was named in his honor.
As they and we were leaving about the same time,
 we had a brief chance to chat.
 They so kindly obliged our desire to snap a few photos.
It brought me such joy to have a chance to take these pictures. 
 As we took them, he greeted people passing by, calling them by name. 
Last night, 
we went to pay our respects
as he was laid to rest today.
 In the past, he served our town with excellence for 20 years.
 His daughter said, 
 "We left a lot of really good karma in your house.  We really did."
 Yes you did!
And for us,
 it possibly started right out there in a porch swing on
 "A Romantic Porch".
Rest In Peace
Mr. McClarnon
Thank you for the smiles

These are my personal photos used with permission by his family.


Salmagundi said...

Oh my -- tears in my eyes! He left a special house for you to enjoy. Sally

Marciann said...

Oh my.
I grew up in that house and remember all the scratches, dents and bumps. We had a great time there and talk about them yet today. The back porch was one of our favorite spots. There was a swing where most of the problems of the world were were solved, many kisses shared, and laughter, lots of laughter!My dad was always glad you guys are there.
Thanks Rachel for sharing this with me.
Enjoy the karma.
Love, Marciann McClarnon Miller