Empty Nest – The E-clips message was a bit hard to take

Isn’t it amazing that the moon is exactly the right size and exactly the right distance from the earth to completely block out the light from the sun? Is this happenstance? Me thinks not. Me thinks there is an order and power in the universe far beyond man’s ability to comprehend and understand while living.
Curt Swarm viewing the “E-Clips” The day before this solar event, a pastor friend put out an “E-Clips” message advising us to place no religious significance on the eclipse. That’s practically impossible for humans to do. Just stating that we should not place significance makes us place it, like the tempting forbidden fruit hanging from the Tree of Knowledge.
Ginnie and I debated whether to drive south into Missouri to observe the eclipse in its totality, like millions of the other umbraphiles (people who love eclipses and travel to see them). After all, we would probably never get this opportunity again in our lifetime. Alas, we had just completed two whirlwind trips to Missouri to help her parents move into assisted living. We were worn out from the trips and needed a rest. We would observe the eclipse, although not a complete one, from the comfort and convenience of our own front yard in SE Iowa.
One of the off-shoots of moving her parents was that Ginnie acquired her parents’ seven-foot-tall grandfather clock. (Getting it moved here is a whole other story.) Anywho, we needed to have a clock repairman come to the house to get the clock set up. Wouldn’t you know it, he came the morning of the eclipse.
The “visitation” by the clock repairman was sort of surrealistic. He drove an hour to get here, spent an hour adjusting and balancing the Sligh (pronounced “Sley”) Clock, and then took off, thanking us for the “fun” he’d had. No charge. He said he gave away one free clock adjustment per month, money wasn’t everything, and we were it. He also advised us to do something nice for someone else. Ginnie and I were flabbergasted, but we did do something nice for another person that day. We gave away a mess of garden string beans to a friend.
It was time for The Eclipse. I got out my welding mask and Ginnie made a viewer from a cereal box. We sat in the front yard, like two kids at the movies, and had a wonderful time. The only thing missing was popcorn, so we shared a Snickers bar. Vehicles rolled by on Highway 34 and honked their horns. We waved back.
Immediately following the Eclipse, a fierce wind came up out of the south, blowing our lawn chairs over. We scrambled to pick up our things and wondered if there was any significance to the unexpected wind.
Earlier that day, at morning chores, I had noticed one of our pullets making signs that she wanted to nest, or lay an egg. After The Eclipse, I went out to check for eggs. Lo-and-behold, there were two brown eggs, one small egg and one oblong larger egg. Had The Eclipse had anything to do with getting our first eggs from our spring pullets? Hmm.
Not able to contain myself, I cracked the eggs. The larger oblong egg was a double-yolker! Praise be to God in the highest! Ginnie and I fried the eggs up in butter, sat right down, and enjoyed our first farm-fresh eggs. The bright orange yolk reminded me of the sun on this day of The Eclipse.
Tell me again that there is no significance to the moon blocking out the sun.
By the way, Ginnie and I highly recommend the movie, “Wind River,” starring Jeremy Renner.

Have a good story? Call or text Curt Swarm in Mt. Pleasant at 319-217-0526, email him at curtswarm@yahoo.com or find him on Facebook. Curt’s stories are also read at 106.3 FM in Farmington.


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