Halloween, Hometown History and Other Musings

Last night I gave a talk about my Minnesota hometown to about 40 interested people, mostly older, white haired people.  I had 99 slides to get through in 30 minutes.  I only got to about the 70th one and then time was up and I asked for questions and comments.  I had a few comments during my presentation where I had to cut short an older gentleman who was going on and on (without a microphone).  He understood when I talked to him later. He was a older grandpa himself but his grandfather was one of the movers and shakers of my hometown.  That would have been 120 years ago.

People can make a difference in the lives of others, be they good or bad.  There are very good people in the world and there are evil ones.  My brother in the big city of Minneapolis was rear ended in his nice new pickup by someone who is evil. There was no police report filed but now this guy claims that my brother cut in in front of him.  He is calling on a lawyer to support what he is lying about.  There are slimy people in the world. Knowing my brother who is smart and can take care of himself, well this guy should not have purposely “bumped” into this hockey player brother of mine.

We just had Halloween and it was simultaneous to a full moon so the weirdos were out in full force. A high school friend of mine said she was in the front room of their house with her daughter and small granddaughters.  There was the ring of the doorbell and the littlest granddaughter thought it was yet another trick or treater.  They had about 35 treaters instead of the usual 75 kids coming for candy.  Instead this little 5 year old girl saw a man in his 20s, who was dressed in camo and had a “Jason” mask on.  He also carried a REAL chainsaw and he ripped it on and revved it up.  Scared everyone in the house and my friend’s husband watched to see where he went next, he just walked across their front lawn and on down the street.

Of course the girls were wild with fear, there are crazies out there…everywhere. There are evil and strange people in the U.S. and in Kazakhstan. Maybe that is why I feel safe to go back in the archives and look up old newspaper articles in the 1870s and 1880s because those people have long passed on. Some have died and were considered good people, others were shrewd, a few made lots of money, while others may have made lots of enemies.  But we mostly find out about the GOOD in people from what is documented.

Someone who owns an antique store in my hometown said that I could look at  what he found of the police records of those men from the 1880s and 1890s who had some kind of run in with the law.  I’m eager to do that.  As I told my captive audience last night, I will be writing a book about our hometown history and trying to figure out who was friends with whom. There were many good men who started up our town at the turn of the 20th century. That’s why it was a privilege to meet the grandson of the man who was one of the founders of our community.

Yes, I hope to write a book about my town with about 200 photos. I look forward to working with Arcadia Publishing in South Carolina because they have about 8,000 titles of small towns printed already.  Small town America is vastly diminishing but I think there should be a renewing of these towns because big city life gets complicated especially looking at what is happening in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.

So, why do I also keep writing about human trafficking issues, especially in Kazakhstan?  I care about the people who are trapped in a country I love.  The Kazakh people I have worked with, yes, there are some evil people who are caught up in the corrupt system in Kazakhstan, they can’t help themselves.  That is why my Master told His followers, “Be wise as serpents and gentle as doves.”  I know I live in two world systems simultaneously, there is nothing I can do about it.  But I can help free or help those who have come out of trafficked situations.  I am an American with freedom and independence on my mind, for everyone including the unborn baby as well as the trafficked victim.  The vulnerable and defenseless need outside help.

As an educator I try to help by making people aware of the evil that is out in the world.  Also, as an educator I want people from my hometown to know about a history that has both good and evil but mostly good.  I come from solid roots where I am able to travel half way around the world to help teach English in Kazakhstan.  If more people from my hometown know about the power of their ancestors and the energy it took to DO good, then they will take heart to know that whatever evil comes to them…this too shall pass.

I know I’m rambling right now, I should be getting ready to pack for my trip to Kazakhstan. What will I witness in changes from when I was there 1 1/2 years ago?  Astana is on a fast track to become an important country to reckon with among the developed nations.  The Kazakhs are in earnest to be recognized as key players on the world scene.  Maybe I have a sense of that spirit being from a small town that used to have a glorious past but is waning in strength and numbers.  I can identify, the Kazakhs have an AMAZING history!!!  Okay, enough for now. I hope to have photos soon of what I see in Kazakhstan, that is, if I get my passport with visa in time. It was held up in New York due to Hurricane Sandy.

I pray for the victims in New York and New Jersey as they pull themselves up to pick up the pieces and try to rebuild.  So I have three scenarios playing out here, my hometown that has little energy, Kazakhstan as a country that has much ambition and potential and they are working hard and the East Coast that will try to rebuild from the destruction.  Hurricane Sandy was an evil force of weather, the good will hopefully prevail.  Okay, I need to go pack now…

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