While dining out with friends Friday evening, the husband let it be known he would like to have a Corvette. We’re about the same age, well past the mid-life crisis marker. It’s not a crisis of any kind if it’s something you’ve always wanted, I suppose.
He and his wife are thinking about a trip after Christmas, and I suggested Bowling Green, Kentucky, where they have a museum devoted to the iconic sports car. He knew all about the museum (located at 350 Corvette Drive, should you want to enter it in your GPS app). His wife, more inclined toward the Crescent City, was not enthusiastic about the idea.
Stephen Burt has a gorgeous royal blue Vette, recently acquired. I bet he’d be happy to give you a ride, I volunteered.
No, my friend said, that would probably ruin it. An older model, maybe one from the ’80s, something like something he could afford, he said.
If there’s anyone out there with a Corvette — a not-too-new one — who would enjoy taking a delightful fellow for a spin, please let me know.
We had planned to go on a Christmas light cruise after dinner, but we talked on, and it was raining when we left the restaurant. So we took an abbreviated tour.
We began at Memorial Funeral Home’s wonderful manger scene, something they’ve been putting up for decades. Years ago the Memorial sheep took an unscheduled girls’ night out. The late Chuck Weldon worked there then. Chuck told me he rounded up the miscreants somewhere in the vicinity of Franklin Academy, as I recall.
Another early problem with the manger scene was the sheep’s propensity for carrying the Baby Jesus around in their mouth. The Christ Child, I noticed Friday evening, is larger and seems to be securely fastened to His crib.
The display is a lovely tribute to the season and the folks at Memorial are to be commended for providing such.
What do you do when you have a massive antebellum to decorate? It could take dozens of strands of lights and days to put them up. Or, you listen to your mother-in-law. That’s what Bonnie Hill did. She and husband Ryan have positioned three small laser spots with red and green beams in their yard. Their light is projected onto the facade of Colonnade (620 Second St. S.).
“My mother in law called from Arkansas and told me about them,” Bonnie said.
The front of their 154-year-old home sparkles. The result is ethereal.
“It looks like somebody took a paintbrush and put spots on it,” said Lizzie Clemons about the Hills’ light show. More on Lizzie in a minute.
While you’re in the neighborhood, drive a block back on Second toward Main and look at the wreath on Beth Sims’ front door. Like Beth, the wreath is elegant and beautiful. The address is 603 Second St. S.
Now on to Lizzie’s yard at 820 10th Ave. S. The retired Walmart greeter has orchestrated another splendid, over-the-top Christmas menagerie. Get out of the car and look. Lizzie’s son Carlos gets some credit for setup. Larry Billups built the manger and got Santa and that reindeer attached to the side of the chimney.
After Lizzie’s continue down 10th Avenue to the old Fuqua Grocery (now Mac’s Meat Mart #2) and take a right on 11th Street. Hello Sarah Smith. Sarah and John Smith’s small front yard is teeming with Christmas cheer. Love that crown on top of the manger, the big white dogs and the matched set of Eiffel Towers. Eiffel Towers?
After the Smiths, go right on 11th Avenue and in a few blocks you’ll come to T.J. Turner’s home (803 11th Ave. S.) T.J. always manages to find Christmas lights in unexpected colors. This year is no exception.
Of course there is plenty of Christmas decor to see, regardless the neighborhood you live in. Let me encourage you to get out and explore.
If you happen to be near Macon during the holiday season, take a ride through the middle of town on Jefferson Street. The city’s old-timey Christmas lights and beautifully decorated homes give the impression you’re happened upon the set of “It’s a Wonderful Life.”
Today, as the Druids assemble at Stonehenge to observe the winter solstice (the shortest day and the longest night of the year), we too can go out into the darkness and breathe in the long night. While driving around looking at Christmas lights may be an odd comparison to a gathering among those ancient stones; it is a way to welcome winter and embrace the season.
Merry Christmas to you all.
Birney Imes III is the immediate past publisher of The Dispatch.