June 14, 2001 – If the rest of the summer is anything like the first week in June, it will be a busy one.
On Wednesday I was trying to add additional memory, a 9-gig hard drive, to one of the office computers until time for Rotary.
We had two fellows from Water Valley making up with us that day — Paul Parker who has some 65 years of perfect attendance and Hamric Henry, a 50-year Rotarian.
After the meeting I took advantage of their presence with the five dollar tour of Bruce — our diversified industries including two Fortune 500s, the park, the residential areas.
I told them the only thing I had to do that afternoon was install the extra memory in the computer, and they both laughed.
“That’s what we tell (a mutual friend in Water Valley who sometimes is a little forgetful) he needs to do,” Paul said. “It’s like when a computer says “memory is low,” he said. “He needs to get rid of some of the old stuff in his mind, so he can add some new stuff.”
Easier said than done I found a hour or so later, when the cables in the computer weren’t quite long enough. The ribbon cable reached, but the power cable was too short to plug in.
I was advised to get an extension cable from Radio Shack and after failing to contact Jo Ann on her way back from Tupelo to get one in Pontotoc and son-in-law Joel on his way from Winona to get one in Grenada, I headed out for Oxford and had one in hand before dark.
Jo Ann said she was eating on the road, so I stopped by the Downtown Grill and ended up at a small table near where two of the owners, Louis Brandt of Houston, TX, and Will and Patty Lewis of Oxford were having dinner with Patty’s brother Al Povall and his wife.
We reminisced about Brandt’s father, who taught at Ole Miss for many years, and Jo Ann’s aunt and uncle, Foster and Claudia Scott, who had operated the Orchid Beauty Parlor in the Povall’s hometown of Lexington for years.
Thursday afternoon, late, the computer was up and running well.
Friday morning Jo Ann was off to see Dr. Mary Pace in Tupelo and I was off to the Northeast Mississippi Development Council of the CREATE Foundation for the big annual meeting.
John Burt had enticed enough folks from South Calhoun to attend for the county to win first place in the attendance competition and he and I later sat at lunch with several old friends including David Cole, recently back from a stint in the Governor’s office; Attorney Guy Mitchell, BanCorp South President Aubrey Patterson, Pontotoc Mayor Bill Rutledge and others.
I almost missed our luncheon and ate with the Kiwanis, or some club, that was next door.
Halfway through the line Konsdantina Govatsos, who, along with her husband, operates the Ramada Convention Center in Tupelo, came up and stopped me.
Hugging me, she said, “You are supposed to be in there.”
I left my tray on the serving deal and apologized. She hugged me again and assured me it was all right.
I have known her and her husband since they were the “koumbaros,” or sponsors at the Kakales-Tidwell Greek Orthodox wedding at the United Methodist Church in Bruce last year.
“Next year I will stand right here,” she pointed to the carpet, “and make sure you get in the right room,” she promised.
She again hugged and kissed me on both cheeks, and I made a note to remember to get in the wrong line next year.
Late Friday afternoon Jo Ann and I met in Bruce and prepared to go back to Tupelo to baby sit for Deanna and Michael so they could go to the Marty Stewart Concert.
Saturday was free until a six o’clock wedding. We sat in folding chairs under a white tent as Jody Ferguson and Casey Clark exchanged vows in the front yard of her cousin’s home east of Bruce.
It was the first sustained sunshine of the week and as soon as the wedding was over guests scrambled for shade as they had for shelter earlier in the day.
We stayed until they left in the limo and were taxied by Wiley Maddox back to our car parked in the cow pasture.
Sunday night we went to Taylor Grocery, recently featured in Southern Living for blackened catfish.
I told owner Lynn Hewlett that we had called Snookie Williams of Water Valley to meet us, but didn’t find him.
“Just as well,” he said, “you need to be careful with your reputation.”
We visited with the Columbus Hoppers and the David Knights as they were leaving and then stopped by Marc DeLoach’s Taylor Arts just across the street from Mayor Jane Rule Burdine’s home.
Ran into former classmate Panny Flautt Mayfield of Clarksdale in the Arts’ place and showed her where the Mayor lives.
Then we came home to get a good night’s rest to get us through the week to come.