Archive for September, 2017

Repeat, Nah, Probably Not!

On September 29, 1789, the first United States Congress adjourned.

The met in New York City’s Federal Hall; the Capitol wasn’t even constructed, heck, Washington D.C. wasn’t even there!

In that first session, the boys did the following… On April 1, they had a quorum and elected officers.  Five days later, the Senate did the same thing! That same day, the House and the Senate, in a joint session, counted the votes of the Electoral College and certified that George Washington had indeed been elected the first President of the United States and second runner UP, John Adams was VEEP!

On April 30, GW took the oath of office in New York City at Federal Hall.

Martha was so proud she posted a picture of the proceedings on Instagram.  It got lots of s!

When they got together back in March, the gang got busy.  The regulated time and manner of oaths of office, created the Tariff of 1789, created the first Cabinet Department, the Department of Foreign Affairs, which was aptly named as Thomas Jefferson was the first Secretary of State, and boy did he have affairs!

In July, Collection of Duties was regulated when they established the Customs Service.  In August they created the Department of War (later PCed down to the Department  of Defense.) The Department of the Treasury and a Judiciary Act came in September which established the federal judiciary and the office of the Attorney General.

That same month before taking off for home, the boys approved 12 amendments to the US Constitution and guaranteed us freedoms and rights, set clear limitations on governmental power, and sent them to the States for ratification.

Of course the states pussy-footed around and it took longer than anyone had hoped!

North Carolina became the 12th state to ratify the Constitution and joined the Union.  There were Tarheel parties everywhere!

Then the boys took off for home, vacation, checking out things at the plantation, kissed a few babies, raised some cash, and basked in the glow and praise of their constituents who were thrilled at all they had accomplished.

Wonder if that’ll happen this year?

Nah, they’d have to accomplish something first!

UP The Road and Round The Bend…

Straining her eyes, Katherine looked UP the road and round the bend; the anticipation was killing her; really, just how much delay could a girl put UP with?

The war had been over for weeks; the Gerrys gave UP, the Japs gave UP; there was no reason for him to still be gone.

But that morning, just like the day before and the day before that, Katherine gave UP, went back into the house, picked the tea kettle UP off the counter, and put it on the stove.

Hearing the bell jingle, she jumped UP from the table and ran to the door.

“Telegram, ma’am,” he said, and handed her the envelope.

It was three days before she could open it UP.


Each week, the lovely and talented Ivy Walker hosts a link-up challenging writers to spin a tale in six sentences – no more, no less. Click on the link right here to find out more and link your own post. While you’re there, click on the blue frog button to find more stories from some wonderful storytellers.

This week’s prompt was UP.  (Needless to say, I was thrilled!)

House Rules

Seems Prince Charles , though he longs to be King, is in no hurry to move into Buckingham Palace when it’s his time to do so.


Apparently, it’s a dump.

If so, it certainly puts on a good face, er façade.

The place wasn’t always the home front for the British Royal Family, heck, it hasn’t even always been a palace at all.

It was originally the love child of the Duke of Buckingham.  He built it as a townhouse and called it Buckingham House.

King George III – the one who lost the colonies – bought the place in 1761 for £21,000 for his wife and Queen, Charlotte.  He of course made it even more grand by adding several new wings and an inner courtyard.

After his death, his extravagant, overbearing, spoiled son and heir, George IV went decorator crazy and gilded the place!

Queen Victoria, the current monarch’s great great grandmother was the first monarch to take UP residence in the place full time and even she didn’t really want to!

The façade of Buckingham Palace we have come to know as the face of the Monarchy wasn’t even there until Victoria’s husband Albert designed it in 1847.

Queen Elizabeth II resides there as her official residence, and occupies a nine room apartment in the place.  She pays for her own furnishing and the rest of the place is a 775 room museum which according to Charles is falling down, unsafe, and rat infested.

The staffers at the palace had been bucking the government for years for cash to fix the place.  Finally after a chunk of the roof line fell and nearly killed the Princess Royal, Parliament caved and coughed UP the equivalent of $500 million over the next ten years to refurbish the place.

Over the next decade, workers will replace 100 miles of electrical wiring, 30 miles of water pipes, 6,500 electrical outlets, 5,000 light fixtures, 2,500 radiators and 500 pieces of “sanitary ware.”

Some of the wiring is 60 years old and most of the plumbing pre-dates World WarII!

But, even with all this, Charles and his wife, Camillia, Duchess of Cornwall (she’s really the Princess of Wales, but no one has the nerve to say it) have no desire to move in.

Of course when there actually is a King Charles III, his official residence will be Buckingham Palace.  It’s unlikely he’ll spend much time there as he’ll inherit his mother’s private residences of Sandringham, Balmoral, and the Crown Estate of Windsor.

But to the world, Buckingham Palace is the residence of the British Monarch, dump or no dump!

Buck UP Charlie, life could be worse!

I’m not an art historian; generally if I have art questions I turn to one of the Pollyanna Kids from Germantown, Nancy Tyner.

She is well versed in art, and she steers me in the right direction from time to time.

I always tell her, “I may not know art, but I know what I like!”

I’m a fan of art that moves me, touches me, and makes me feel good.

I collect old family photographs, and have several.  They are hardly art, but in some cases they are decorative.

Some, a little scary!

I steer clear of religious art; growing UP in a Baptist preacher’s home there was little religious art, as much of it was considered idolatry.

But there are a few pieces I like, one in particular.

The Road to Emmaus by Robert Zünd.

Zünd was an important Swiss painter in the 19th century.

A middle class boy, he attended school in Lucerne and was taught drawing by James Schwegler.  Eventually moving to Geneva, he was taught by Diday and Calame – apparently they were important too – I’ll have to check with Ms. Tyner!

In the 1860s, back in Lucerne, his work took on a more religious nature.

The Road to Emmaus was painted in 1877. Zünd died in 1909.

The painting depicts a scene from the Gospel of Luke, chapter 24, and verses 13-35.  It took place shortly after the resurrection of Jesus Christ and in it two of Christ’s disciples meet Jesus on the Emmaus road and are completely clueless as to who He is.

Luke tells us… …and, behold, two of them went that same day to a village called Emmaus, which was from Jerusalem about threescore furlongs. And they talked together of all these things which had happened. And it came to pass, that, while they communed together and reasoned, Jesus himself drew near, and went with them. But their eyes were holden that they should not know him. And he said unto them, What manner of communications are these that ye have one to another, as ye walk, and are sad?

And one of them, whose name was Cleopas, answering said untio him, Art thou only a stranger in Jerusalem, and hast not know the things which are come to pass there in these days?

And he said unto them, What things?

And they said unto him, Concerning Jesus of Nazareth, which was a prophet mighty in deed and word before God and all the people:

And how the chief priests and our rulers delivered him to be condemned to death, and have crucified him. But we trusted that it had been he which should have redeemed Israel; and beside all this, today is the third day since these things were done.

Yea, and certain women also of our company made us astonished, which were early at the sepulcher; and when they found not his body, they came, saying, that they had also see a vision of angels, which said he was alive. And certain of them which were with us went to the sepulchre, and found it even so as the women had said: but him they saw not.

Then he said unto them, O fools, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken: Ought not Christ to have suffered these things, and to enter into his glory?  And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, he expounded unto them in all the scriptures the things concerning himself.

And they drew nigh unto the village, whither they went: and he made as though he would have gone further.   But they constrained him, saying, Abide with us: for it is toward evening, and the day is far spent. And he went in to tarry with them.

And it came to pass, as he sat at meat with them, he took bread, and blessed it, and brake, and gave to them.

And their eyes were opened, and they knew him; and he vanished out of their sight.

And they said one to another; Did not our heart burn within us, while he talked with us by the way, and while he opened to us the scriptures?  And they rose up the same hour, and returned to Jerusalem, and found the eleven gathered together, and them that were with them,

Saying, The Lord is risen indeed, and hath appeared to Simon.  And they told what things were done in the way, and how he was known of them in breaking of bread.

Zünd and his painting may not be all that important in the world of art, but the story and what it depicts are to me.

Every time I look at the print of the painting on my wall, I’m reminded of the resurrection of Christ and what He did for the world.

Like I said, I may not know art, but I know what I like.