Kindness, Hot Rod Charlie & Kennedy and Vine

As you already know, there are many more than three things every day that make me happy, I just don’t always take the time to list them, though I always appreciate them. But today, by 9 a.m, I already had more than half a dozen things that brought a smile to my face, made me happy, and once again made me appreciate everything I have and all the wonderful people that surround me. I needed air in my tires, and working the free air machine at the Route 36 Highlands gas station isn’t one of my talents. But not one, but two men came over to help. Call it sexist, but this female was very appreciative, especially after I apologized for not being that talented, one of the man said to me, “that’s ok, I don’t know how to change a tire!” Then leaving the parking lot at the Route 36 Fitness Center, I couldn’t help but notice the half dozen hard working men who were mowing the lawn, planting flowers and generally cleaning up a mall area that always looks inviting, clean, and colorful. Back at home, I had two squirrels waiting on the steps for their anticipated treats…they run up the steps to the landing and patiently wait until I drop a couple of peanuts, then hop up on the railing so I can enjoy watching them chew, enjoy, and mess up my porch with the shells! That was ok, though, because I also heard to sparrows in the bush waiting for me to fill the feeder! The little varmints all have me trained! And in today’s Kentucky Derby, Hot Rod Charley is my favorite, not because of the French jockey, who won the last Derby by default if you remember all of that! Interestingly enough, the favorite is ridden by the jockey who lost in that awful race! But every Gamecock will be cheering on Hot Rod Charley because of the story behind it. The owner, trainer and University of South Carolina football coach all got together because a friend wanted to do something more, and they wanted to help, to memorialize his son. Seems Dad is a Gamecock alumnus, and his two sons always wanted to be as well. But one of the teenagers was tragically killed by a drunk driver, and the parents set up a scholarship fund for walk-on football players at South Carolina. Hot Rod Charley is wearing a Game Cock blanket today, and helping to support that scholarship fund and a soon to be football player who missed out on selection or scholarship. Not crazy about the egotistical rider, but hope he wins this one. Then there’s that new indoor plant store that’s opening with a formal ribbon cutting my Mayor Gluckstein next weekend. Kennedy and Vine sounds like a great place for everything from potting soil and pots to indoor blooms and..I would expect…vines! Says a lot for the gumption and drive of a business owner to be able to open a new business during this Covid stuff. And a lot for First Avenue in Atlantic Highlands for being the kind of town and location new shop owners want to come to.

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