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Over Coffee

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WARMEST WISHES – Nola Martin will celebrate a very special birthday on May 29. A mutual friend shared that news with me, Nola, and I am so glad to learn of your special day. I hope everyone who has met or who knows this extraordinary woman will join me this week in filling her Massena home with birthday cards to celebrate a milestone year.

My warmest wishes, Nola. How grateful I am that our paths have crossed. I understand you, too, enjoy Koffee Kup donuts – perhaps that will make a perfect birthday gift this year!

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NOTE FOR THE EDITOR – Editor Ryne made some additions to this column last week. His Editor’s Note centered on his hockey allegiances. Editor Ryne is a fan of the NHL Boston Bruins. My allegiances are with our family of Montreal Canadien fans. I truly don’t understand why Editor Ryne would think I would write of any achievements of his team in this column. I have explained before that hopefully our visits “Over Coffee” will be positive items and mention of Ryne’s Bruins would not be a positive thought in our home.

Perhaps Editor Ryne felt the need to mention the few wins of his Bruins knowing full well they won’t be circling the ice with the Stanley Cup held high. For me, there is no achievement to be mentioned until that final victory.

What fun we had this past weekend. We were in Chappaqua with our family celebrating so many wonderful events in the lives of our grandchildren. Saturday I went shopping at a Staples in nearby Mount Kisco with our oldest son. I smiled thinking of Editor Ryne as the clerk behind the counter was proudly wearing a Rangers jersey.

Ryne’s “Editor’s Notes” had to be explained to our Italian readership. My sister, who lived on Cape Cod for a number of years, did know about the Bruins, but as she told me after reading the column last week, she did have to explain Editor Ryne’s Notes to a friend who had also shared “Over Coffee.” Yes, Ryne, your comments about our friendly sports rivalry are now internationally known.

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BIRTHDAY WISHES – If I remember correctly the infamous other Bruins fan Donnie Comins celebrates his birthday today. Have a great day, Donnie, celebrating with your family – hopefully there will be a Canadiens jersey or two around the table to help you celebrate this year.

My very best wishes Donnie for a terrific day and only the best in the year ahead.

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DAY OF REMEMBRANCE – Memorial Day will be honored on May 27 this year. As I thought about this column this weekend, my thoughts immediately turned to family and our very special time together on Sunday. After reading the newspapers that had been missed and checking my e-mail, I knew that once again I must mention the Memorial Day Observance. I know I mentioned the importance of Memorial Day last year, but obviously stores haven’t realized there is far more to this day than the promotion of a sale.

Memorial Day was established, I read, in 1868 as a day of remembrance of those who have died in our nation’s service – those who have sacrificed and given the ultimate so we might live in freedom. I can write my thoughts that will be printed because of this freedom, we can cast our votes because of the freedoms others have given their lives for. And on Sunday mornings when we worship in the house of worship throughout this community that we chose to worship in, it is because others have given the ultimate sacrifice.

In 1868 flowers were placed on the graves of the soldiers at Arlington National Cemetery. I have shared with you in the past that when I was a child in elementary school, I remember the Memorial Day observances in the small town I grew up in Dresden, on Seneca Lake. There was a parade to the cemetery and after taps were played the children would take the baskets of flowers (I remember mine were irises) and place them on a grave that was marked by a flag. During a solemn ceremony Clarence Ryal read the roll – reading each name of those who served and those who died in battle.

I urge each of you to honor those who have served and those who gave their lives in service to our country this week-end. If there are young children in your family, please make sure they understand the meaning of this day. Take them to a cemetery and have them honor those who gave the ultimate sacrifice so that we might live in freedom. My heartfelt thanks to each one who served and honor is given to those who died in that service. Although I do enjoy shopping and reading sale papers, this week those sale fliers have been recycled for my thoughts this week-end are with the true meaning of this day and not with the bargain of the week.

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GRATEFUL – As we shopped in Mount Kisco Saturday, we drove by several gas stations. The price per gallon in that town (which is still in New York state), was $3.99. When we purchased gas on Thursday evening here near our home, the price was $3.50. Amazing. Isn’t the north country a wonderful place to live? I certainly think so.

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THOUGHT FOR THE WEEK – This will remain the land of the free only as long as it is the home of the brave. Elmer Davis.

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