Getting away from the two ‘W’s’

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, April 8, 2003

A trip to Maryland last weekend was a welcomed one just being able to dwell on something else instead of the two W’s, war and work. I want to thank my God that I have another way of serving the community in addition to writing and singing in the YMCA Community Chorus: being a member of the Suffolk Les Gemmes Inc.

Gail Hinton-Copeland, a close friend, and I joined the organization in October 2000, and last weekend we traveled to Hunt Valley, Md. to participate in the induction ceremony of the Finksburg chapter in Finksburg, Md. Audrey Knight, president and Maggie Gay, vice president, also attended and rode together. To date we have 18 chapters statewide.

I work on a computer almost every day and still have plenty to learn about them. I discovered it can provide you with travel instructions from a source called Map Quest, which gives detailed directions from your house to your exact point of destination. The map showed us what interstate exits, roads, boulevards, and streets to take, how many miles we would have to travel, and the amount of time it would take to get there.


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We left Suffolk at 12:15 p.m. April 4, and followed the map to the Embassy Suite Motel without getting lost once. The Map Quest even told us how long the trip would take and we arrived in Hunt Valley at 4:45 p.m., only 15 minutes short of the time that the map stated because we stopped to rest.

The farther north we went, the more we were reminded of the world situation. We saw many lighted signs asking people to call a certain phone number if they should witness any threats or acts of terrorism. This reminded me that no matter where we traveled the war was still ongoing and I then experienced a brief period of sadness for troops and their loved ones.

I was then determined to let this be one weekend that I would let my mind relax and think only good thoughts. Everyone needs to do this every once in a while or they may go crazy from the constant broadcast of what is happening in Iraq.

At the motel, after the induction ceremony and other important meetings were over on Saturday, Gail and I had a late snack at an area restaurant close by, shopped a little at a shoe store and a Wal-Mart, and then visited an exercise room in the motel to try out the treadmills and bicycles. I was glad to find out that the motel had this kind of equipment so that I could keep up with my regular workout routine that I had started two weeks ago.

We checked out Sunday morning at 9 a.m. and arrived in Ivor 1:30 p.m. to attend an appreciation service and dinner given for Bernice Holloman at New Branch Baptist Church. Since Holloman is Gail’s aunt, she was also on the program to do a solo. We had prayed that we would make the program on time and the traffic and weather were in our favor.

The service began about 2:15 p.m. Fourteen people including family members reminisced about the honoree, and we enjoyed a good old-fashioned country dinner. Holloman thanked everyone for a beautiful program and being remembered in this way.

Gail and I hit the road once more and arrived home at 5:30 p.m. We reminded ourselves that this trip was only a short preview of good things to come being sponsored by the Suffolk Les Gemmes.

Each chapter is required to participate in community service projects, and at present we have two fundraisers going.

About two years ago we sponsored a dinner theatre at Temple Beth El that was a sellout. The name of the play was, &uot;Maggie Fly Does Her Show,&uot; a Herman Clark Production. We are now going to sponsor a new production called, &uot;Maggie Fly is Back in Town,&uot; by the same cast and crew at 5 p.m. Sunday, May 18, in Temple Beth El. An article will be published in the near future about this event and tickets are already on sale for $25 from any Gemme member.

The Suffolk Les Gemmes are also planning a trip to New Orleans, La. during the week of Aug. 3-10. This trip will include stops in Montgomery, Ala. and Atlanta, Ga. Proceeds from these events will go towards community service projects and scholarships. Seats are still available, so see any member about this trip.

Well, it is back to the two W’s once more. I only hope that the news I heard about Saddam Hussein and his sons this morning is true. If it is, maybe that will eliminate one of the &uot;W’s&uot; real soon, and our troops can soon return home.

As for the other &uot;W,&uot; it’s really wonderful to return to a place of employment where my co-workers even including the editor, took the time to wish me a safe and happy trip, and when I returned they cared enough to ask if I had a good time and say I was really missed. That’s the love that has kept me here for 31 years.

Evelyn Wall is a staff writer and regular columnist for the News-Herald.