Sunday, July 4, 2010


Even in 91 degree heat, the Box fairly purred its way across the Susquehanna River to the home of our friends Edie and Bill Walsh. Edie and I worked together at the Historical and Museum Commission for many years on the Executive staff, and then after our current Governor took office, we got the boot to other areas of the Commission. We were among the last of staff to retire before the "reign of terror" came, when the PHMC's budget was slashed and our now-former jobs thrown into jeopardy.

Susanne and I arrived last (of course) and were pleased to meet Edie's friends, whom, it seems, she has recruited to participate in the International Fellows Program at the Army War College in Carlisle, and the foreign officers we're sponsoring. We're all "community" sponsors, and our job is to help the families who come for the year to feel at home and learn more about our region.

"Our" officer, Col. Patrik Steiger of France, was unable to attend the party today because he had already been invited by the French military attaché in Washington D.C. We'll get to meet him after his family arrives at the end of the month.

While the children from Holland and Canada played in the pool, we adults mingled near the hors d'œuvre and got acquainted. We met Wilfred and Annette from Holland, Derek and Rhonda from Canada, and Nacet from Turkey, and their community sponsors.

After a wonderful Fourth of July all-American meal, we played a game of Jeopardy that Edie had made up, tailoring it to the audience. The men, even after several gracious "passes" to the women, were triumphant in the end. The evening ended with a round of sparklers.

Last to arrive and last to leave, we came upon Nacet at the curb trying unsuccessfully to start his car. Bill went in to find jumper cables while Edie turned her car around at warp speed to offer its battery for a jump start. Friends helping friends. How American!

 Sandy, Nacet (Turkey), and Leon

Derek and Rhonda (Canada)

Wilfred, Annette and kids (Holland)

Like George Washington, I cannot tell a lie --
I created this patriotic dessert.

Edie ("Alex Trebek") moderates the Jeopardy game 
based on history of the U.S. and the guest's countries.

 The women think seriously before offering 
their answer, er, question.

Some of the guys cogitate in preparation for their
triumphant win over the women.

The new friends pose for a group portrait.

Sparklers illuminated the dusk as we celebrated our
nation's Independence Day.

Susanne and Edie, in the style of Click and Clack
(the Tap-it Brothers) of NPR's 'Car Talk' try to 
determine what the problem is with Nacet's car.
Bill appears with the jumper cables and sets to work
getting our Turkish friend on his way.

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