In life, a person will come and go from many homes.
— Ari Beck
Jean Barney agreed with me on the disappointment in going back to visit your first homestead.
”I understand completely,” she wrote. “We bought a wood-frame house west of Blacksburg, Va., when my husband was in graduate school.
“Picture a big front porch, porch swing on a 1 1/2 story white frame with four fireplaces and a huge maple tree in the front yard. We went back years later. The maple tree was cut down, a motorcycle parked in the spot where it once shaded the porch. Particle board enclosed the porch (ugly).
“The cherry tree we had planted when our daughter was born was gone. Our neighbors were still there and had put up a privacy fence to hide the ugly house next door. At least they couldn’t see it at eye level.
“We filled the house with love, friends and good food making it a home. I still have dreams of the home we brought our babies to, waking up to envision the uncared-for place it has become.”
SWING YOUR PARTNER: Dan and Mary Martin, of Augusta, wanted me to know that Georgia has many official designations and one of them is in dance. They wrote:
“Your recent article listing Georgia’s officially designated birds, fruit, fish, frogs and gems missed Georgia’s designated folk dance — the square dance.
“This activity is an authentic American creation. It is healthful as well as enjoyable and it has spread worldwide. Today there are thousands of active square dancers in Georgia and across our country, Plus, there are many more thousands who are native to most major countries around the globe. No matter where dances are held, all dance-directed calls are in English.
“During the Reagan administration, our United States Congress voted approval, and President Reagan signed a resolution that made the square dance our official national dance for an 18-month period. Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter were square dancers, and in 1977, one inaugural ball was designated a square dance.
“Two busloads of Augusta’s dancers attended and participated. Then, during the 1996 Georgia legislative session, our lawmakers voted approval and Gov. Zell Miller signed into law a proclamation that designated the square dance as Georgia’s official state dance.
“There are three active square dance clubs in Augusta. These clubs dance year round and are open to all active dancers plus interested non-dancing guests. It’s not unusual to have dancers attend from other states; we’ve even had the occasional foreign couple come by and join in.”
TODAY’S JOKE: A little boy asked his grandmother what year she was born.
She told him 1935.
“Wow!” he said. “If you were a baseball card, you’d be worth a lot of money!”
Reach Bill Kirby at bill.kirby at augustachronicle.com.