Chester Chatter: Memory stones in the garden

By Ruthie Douglas
©2020 Telegraph Publishing LLC

After doing some landscaping work around our back door at the farmhouse, somehow we ended up with a batch of dirt at the side of the door.

From then on, whenever we went on a trip, I’d collect a stone from the trip and toss it on the dirt pile. What an uplifting thing those stones where when I felt a little down or blue. Sometimes all I had to do was look and sometimes I would bend down, grab a stone and hold it in my hand. I could smell the ocean and once again I would feel better.

It was a tradition I continue in my current home.

I always look for the small red rocks I gathered in Florida.  Once while driving home from Florida on I-95, a little above Jacksonville, my daughter Donna and I stopped for gas and to rest up a bit. An older man sitting by the gas station entrance asked us where we were from. We told him we were from New England. And he said, “Let me keep you girls safe,” as he handed us three red and white stones. “These are native to this area,” he said. He added that the passenger — which was me — should  “hold them in your hand until you get home. … I have already blessed them for good luck.”

When we got home to Vermont, the stones went into the memory pile. Flash forward to one day last week. Digging up some flowers, there lay two of those red rocks. And guess what, they were not really red stones. They had been painted!

Scene and heard

Ruthie Douglas, a member of the Auxiliary of the American Legion #67 in Chester holds two stockings she stuffed with goods for homeless veterans.  Photo by Judy Cenate.

History was made this past week. Now let us return to kindness and caring.

My old classmate Jon Peters has died.

Happy birthday to my grandson Ben Bolaski and granddaughter Ivy Gabert.

The Auxiliary of the Chester American Legion #67 is collecting items for holiday stockings for homeless veterans.

Toothpaste, soap, shampoo, combs, tissues, socks, holiday candy and other helpful items are welcome. If you wish to donate, call me at 875-3260 for details.



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Filed Under: Chester ChatterCommunity and Arts Life

About the Author: Ruthie Douglas is originally from Springfield but has called Chester her home for 58 years, and has been writing the Chester Chatter column for more than 40 of those years. Ruthie is also a longtime volunteer throughout the community.

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