The Literary Corner: Renegade Writer’s Guild – Davie County Enterprise Record
By Gaye Hoots
This week our family had a lot to celebrate. My daughter Kendra celebrated her birthday on the 5th, and her son Vann, who is in the Navy, came from Colorado to celebrate with us. Vann had a great year. He was selected as both Sailor of the Quarter and Sailor of the Year for 2021. He was also selected for the EOD training, which lasts 2 years. This will be a challenge as only 50% of trainees complete the program. Kendra, Vann. and enjoyed lunch at Davie Tavern for his birthday.
My great-granddaughter turned 16 that night on the 7th. Friends and family gathered at Advance Methodist Church. Lorene Markland and my granddaughter made this evening a memorable one. Most of our family and my sister’s family attended. Jaden hopes to have his driver’s license by the end of this week.
Jaden’s mother just completed a master’s degree and is now a licensed behavior analyst who works with autistic children and their families. She completed the program with a 4.0 average while working full time and as a parent to Jaden. Her mentor, Rhys Potts, encouraged her every step of the way. We had a lot to celebrate this year and also had many challenges.
Kendra returns to Florida to work and Vann will receive most of her training in Florida. Tiffany and Jaden plan a future with Jon and his son Briggs. Jaden’s father, Millard, his brother Carter, and Samantha were there to wish him well. Several of his friends and classmates were also present. My twins were there with Cami and everyone had a great time.
We lost my granddaughter Alex a little over 5 years ago, and I still remember her empty chair. She struggled with addiction, and all of our efforts were not enough to change her life, so we are aware of the fragility of each life and try to enjoy each day given to us with each other.
My sister and her husband supported my children, my grandchildren and Jaden, my great-grandchild. They have grandchildren who have stable, Christian, high-achieving families, but they were always available when mine needed help or had something to celebrate. Our friends and our community have also supported us.
I am happy that my daughters have all chosen careers in health care and education, which I believe gives something back to the community. Terri Champney joined us and continues to encourage each of us. We all miss Tom Champney, who helped me spoil them all.
We mourn our losses, celebrate our accomplishments, and appreciate the good things God gives us every day. Four generations of my family have attended Shady Grove School, and we are fortunate to have a county with a strong school system, strong churches, community league sports, and a great library to nurture our young people. We are also proud of our veterans, our military and those who are ready to serve. My ancestry dates back to the Revolutionary War, and the first Hoot to settle in this area received a land grant for his service in that war. Our community continues to build on this foundation.
By Mary Craig
Last Friday at dinner, I decided to go to a nearby restaurant for seafood. I found myself a table but looked around first to see if there was anyone I knew. To hide the fact that I was alone, I used an app on my smartphone to play a game while waiting for my fish to arrive. Another waitress brought it, and I really appreciated when the first waitress hurriedly passed by my table and collected my ticket. I thought she just forgot to add something to the check. People came and went, but I didn’t pay much attention.
I was almost done eating when my first waitress came by and said quickly, “Your dinner has been paid for.” I was so surprised that I couldn’t think of anything to say. When she came back, I asked who had paid. She told the young couple at the next table who had already left. I was totally surprised and tried very hard to remember what they looked like, but couldn’t. I was humbled and embarrassed that they were kind enough to offer me a meal, and I couldn’t even seat them.
My resolution that stems from my disconnection is to be aware of others and reciprocate. I will keep my phone in my pocket next time and be careful of other people around me.
People are more important than things.
Meara and Niamh
By Julie Terry Cartner
“Tell me again, mom. Please tell me the story of Meara and Niamh,” little Muireann asked her mother.
“Many years ago, when your great-grandmother was a young woman, it seemed to all of Ireland that the fish had gone away. Large fishermen came out in their boats and cast their nets, but no fish were found. Your great-grandmother, Meara, lived at home with her father and younger sister, Alannah. Now Alannah was in poor health and was getting sicker and sicker because there was so little to eat. Meara and her father constantly worried about Alannah, their little darling. One day when Meara’s father, Ronan, was fishing, Meara decided to walk along the shore in search of all the seashells she could find.
“Meara disappeared that night and was not seen for years. Surprisingly, that evening when Ronan came home, he had a net full of fish. Despite his concern for his eldest daughter, he and Alannah ate well and he had enough fish to share. For the first time in months, they didn’t go to bed hungry, but concern for Meara made their hearts sad. Despite her concerns, Alannah became healthy almost overnight.
“Every morning Ronan would fish and every afternoon he would come home with his nets full. Every evening he roamed the cliffs along Galway Bay, searching in vain in the waves, calling for his daughter, but every night he came home alone. As her health improved, Alannah took over household chores, cooking and cleaning for her father. She too has spent countless hours looking for her sister, but to no avail.
“Being believers in magic, father and daughter had no doubt that their good fortune was connected with Meara’s disappearance; they just didn’t know how. All they could do was pray that their beloved daughter and sister was somewhere safe and happy.
“Several years passed and one day, as Alannah left her cabin on her daily search for her sister, she saw a woman and a child walking towards her. Barely daring to hope, she broke into a run. , the sisters were in each other’s arms, laughing, crying and talking at the same time.
“Meara exclaimed how healthy Alannah was and how much she had grown. She introduced the little girl, ‘Here is Niamh, my daughter.’ She asked about her father and was relieved to hear that he was fine and had gone fishing.
“Then it was Alannah’s turn. ‘What happened? Where were you? And tell me about Niamh,” were some of the questions she longed to know the answers to.
“When Papa came back, the nets were full again, and when the joyful reunion died down, Meara told her story:
“The day I disappeared; I was walking along the sea in search of shells. Just when I spotted a beautiful conch, a man, a handsome man with laughing eyes came out of the sea. Before I could grab the conch, he grabbed me and kissed me.
“’Meara, daughter of the sea, you were meant to be mine. I saw you walking on those cliffs, your beautiful golden hair wrapping around your face. I saw you swimming in the creek when no one was watching. Come with me and be my bride. If you spend five years with me at sea, I will spend the next five with you on land.
“I can’t,” Meara replied. I have to take care of my father and my sister.
“If you come with me, I’ll make sure his nets are full and your sister is okay.”
“Now Meara knew the man was a Selkie and if he made a promise he would keep it. “Let me go home and tell them,” she pleaded. But, fearing that she might not return, the Selkie, Kale, refused to let her go.
Knowing that her family would be fine, Meara agreed, and she and Kale dived into the depths of the sea together. Now, as promised, the five years had passed and Meara and Niamh were reunited with their beloved family. Kale joined them and helped Ronan fish.
Thus passed the years, five in the sea and five on land. Niamh grew up and got married, and soon I was born. Now they are back in the sea, and I am here with you, my precious daughter. When you’re five, we too will go to the sea to live.
RWG Literary Corner
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