The Night of the Dinner in Morrisville

Kathy went for out for dinner to a friend’s house in Morrisville.  They are some friends she made when we were at the beach three years ago.  It was a sunny day, back then, and they agreed to take the annual Post family photo.

It turned out that this couple used to live in Catskill, New York.  An exchange of letters followed, and now
upon her return to Durham, Kathy is visiting them again.  These days, they live in Morrisville.

They live at the end of a cul-de-sac in a subdivision named Dover
Glen.  Its almost 9:30, and the neighborhood is very quiet.  There is
no place to park, because the span of each driveway pretty much takes
up the entire circumference of the cul-de-sac.  I guess that is fine if
you don’t plan on having any visitors.  I wonder, though, if upon
parking someone will come out of one of these faux Tudors to claim that
I have encroached upon their space.

The homes have garage doors on the front, with a small concrete
patio and vinyl siding.  There is a uniform assortment of decorative
grasses next to the mail box.  There is a butterfly on a flag pole next
to the mail box.  The driveway has two minivans.  One is white.  One is
beige.  Both are Chryslers.  “My daughter is an honor student at Cary
High,” they shout, along with another that simply states “Lacrosse.”

I am getting Kathy at the end of the evening.  She settles into the
passenger seat of my car.  I turn on the engine and we roll out.  I can
tell she is glad to have seen them.  Still, her face is red and she’
acting nervous.

“They are very religious,” she begins.

Now, I have to feel that this is sort of a case of the pot calling the kettle black.  But…

It turned out that they were unusual in an unexpected way.

“So,” she says, “it kind of went like this.  We had a meal, and then
we talked.  And I didn’t bring it up, but she kept bringing up the

OK, so the wife was excited about the convention.  And I come to soon understand that so was her husband.

“He is very certain about some things,” she said, “like about how he
thinks all students should be assigned, as homework, to watch the
Republican National Convention.”

“This is what he thinks,” she said, “he says ‘it’s educational!’ ”

“I tried to just refrain,” said Kathy.  Kathy is normally shy, and very cautious with people she does not know that well.

Kathy related how she responded: “Yes,” Kathy had said, “can you believe what they are saying?”

I am sure that Kathy’s voice hinted at her sense of the incredulity
of Mitt, the arrogance of Rudy, the audacity of Sarah.  “Mockery,” she
said, this morning, “that’s all they were doing.  Its not right to pray
and then do that.”

It did not sound as if Gary picked up on that doubt in her voice.

“Yes, I think people need to know the truth,” Gary said.  “Like
about how Obama has those friends, like the ones at his church, the
radicals, or the ones who started 9-11.”

Gary goes on.  “No experience!  I am very frightened about the idea
of an Obama-figure in the White House. And he wants to take away our

Kathy continues to relate her experience.

“But do you think that they are kind in their heart,” I asked them.
“I mean, Obama has got his heart in the right place. Like the way
Kennedy does.  DId you see Kennedy?”

She enunciates, because she wants to underscore the strength of her
feeling.  “Because that Kennedy, he is kind, warm, speaking from his

I have to agree.  But, her friends liked that comparison a lot.

“Oh,” she said, “they didn’t like Kennedy. “Kennedy,” they said, “do
you know that he’s a multi-millionaire!  Don’t you realize that?  He is
one of the most powerful men in the world.  He owns more than they are
telling us.  Don’t believe them that he is kind!”

So, Kathy said, “I resolved to be mum from then on. But really
cannot imagine how someone could believe all of that.  Do you really
think they believe that?  Are they watching the news?”

– –

For Kathy, it was the first time she had heard these kind of words.
They don’t exist in her community, and they are largely outside of the
Subaru Woods at Whole Foods Village Crossing that is our neighborhood
(Trinity Park).  Hard to think about, but this household is much like
half of the families in America.


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