McFadyen Musings

Squash Casserole and Chemotherapy

Squash Casserole and Chemotherapy  By: Bill McFadyen My wife, Susanna, routinely suffers a great injustice while entertaining at our home. She goes through a mental list of potential guests. Once chosen, their attendance is confirmed, at which time my wife plans a menu representative of all the food groups with starters, main courses, side dishes and desserts.  From about mid-day on the day of the event, […]

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A Letter from Mom

 A Letter from Mom  By: Bill McFadyen   It has been five years since I told her “Happy Mother’s Day.” I doubt she remembered the last one, as dementia had eroded her ability to retain things. In fact, during those last few “Happy Mother’s Days,” she was struggling to appear nonplussed hour by hour, while inside she was […]

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The Cornbread Skillet

THE CORNBREAD SKILLET   By: Bill McFadyen   Hearing of Mamma’s death was nothing like when Granddaddy died. Riding in the backseat on the way to the coast to fish for Spanish mackerel, I had heard my uncle tell his fishing buddies that Granddaddy would live a normal life after having received a lung cancer diagnosis. To […]

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$75 a Month

By: Bill McFadyen There is no arguing that it was indeed a very cool condo. Eighth floor, facing west toward Molokai and the sunset, and looking down on a coral reef below the surface a hundred yards off the beach. But then, everything on Maui bordered on beautiful. Still, $900 a month in 1984 was big rent. The only way to mathematically tackle it on the wages made […]

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THE DOG DAYS of SUMMER 

Growing up, we never had a dog. We had a calico cat for a very long time and I had a quail for a couple of years. Not dogs. It seems an odd omission to me now for such a traditional family as were we.  In adulthood, though, I had dreams of owning a great quail dog. A lot of that vision came […]

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I Thought It Was Just A Party

By: Bill McFadyen It would never happen in today’s more competitive world but somehow, in 1979, I managed to secure a spot as a freshman at the prestigious Davidson College. Their expectation was that I be a part of the graduating Class of 1983. The miracle is not that I got in; that was just a mistake on the part of someone in the Admissions Office who was foolish enough […]

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Another Productive Day

By: Bill McFadyen My wife did a fantastic job of compiling a list of chores for me to accomplish that Saturday while she would be in town shopping for Back to College items for our rising sophomore. There was, of course, the yard to be mowed. The destruction of the old boy’s club in the barn had stalled out since […]

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BIRDFEEDERS

BIRDFEEDERS        The phone screen read “Hoose.”  When Hudson was still just a little tyke, he loved playing with Pokémon cards. He had hundreds. I never caught on to the game, so as a cursory observer, I simply noticed that all of the figures had Asian names. I told him that as many […]

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Make No Mistake

By Bill McFadyen “Early” depends on your internal clock but for me, it was early – daylight before the sunrise. True to her preferred Sunday ritual, my wife slept on. Penny sniffed for interlopers from the night before and Norma did that cat-thing where she demanded attention until it was offered, at which time she […]

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Life Behind the Earthen Dam

By Bill McFadyen   My primary care physician, who also served as best man at my late 20th century wedding, was engaging in retention of repeat business in that spring of 2012. “We see by our records that you have not had a physical in two years. We would like to schedule one.” It was only […]

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“Mr. Marvin’s Marinade”

by Bill McFadyen February 25, 2018 I never knew a whole lot about Marvin Hayslip. One of his daughters married one my in-laws. I saw him on Thanksgivings. His family and my in-laws occupied the same house for a spell. As is my way, I mingled in and out of every group. He seemed from […]

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I Thought We Came to Fish

By Bill McFadyen Back in the days before sloshing across the deep blue sea in large boats made me turn various colors and then vomit, I fished about once a year with Watson Caviness and his dad, Dr. Bob Caviness. I would contribute a share toward entry fees and expenses in small tournaments that took […]

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Graduation Goodbye

Of Rainbows and Fledgling Flights By: Bill McFadyen From the first day of becoming a parent, one hears the clichéd advice repeatedly. It comes from people older than you or at least from ones whose children have aged to a point beyond the full need of parental guidance.  My dad was the master of the […]

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Makin’ Bacon

By Bill McFadyen Growing up, Virginia was always about making our house a home. She was our mother, but more so she was our mom. Papa Scott was growing a small business into a large one. He was an incredible provider and in the last 20 years of his life, those years when I came […]

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McFadyen’s Musings: The Littlest Things

By Bill McFadyen We only saw each other when he was working. The friendship‘s beginning was a product of where I did business when our boat needed servicing. I only knew his first name and am unsure he knew mine at all. He sported long braids; I had male pattern baldness. I vacationed on the […]

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McFadyen’s Musings: The Man I Want To Be

We were still in the habit of bathing our baby girl in the bathroom sink when word came of a second child in Susie’s womb. Looking for any reason not to have to repaint to a gender-specific color, I insisted that we should surprise ourselves seven months later by not allowing the ultrasound nurse to […]

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McFadyen’s Musings: Jose’s Boots

For two decades, I listened with only one ear when a church member would talk about mission trips to Reynosa, Mexico. A crowd would go down there by way of McAllen, Texas, and be gone for a week. Honestly, I did not miss them. To my perception, they were gone for a Sunday or two […]

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McFadyen’s Musings July/Aug 2017

By Bill McFadyen  We were still in the habit of bathing our baby girl in the bathroom sink when word came of a second child in Susie’s womb. Looking for any reason not to have to repaint to a gender-specific color, I insisted that we should surprise ourselves seven months later by not allowing the […]

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