When you’re tired and stressed out I think there’s nothing better than to meet people who take you into their home and wrap their warmth around you till you revive. For us, that warmth came from Kathy and Vernon Kreuger, my friend Renita’s mam and stepdad.
We arrived in Reddick at 12.30pm having survived the freeway traffic and a couple of wrong turns and very little sleep. They welcomed us to their home, a wonderful 180 acre farm, and introduced us to their Yorkiepoo dog, Emily, and rescue dog, Dixie. It was still, hot and humid, the air thickening with the sounds of cicadas, and we sat in the shade and cool of their garden gazebo watching hummingbirds feed from special feeders hanging outside. It was just what we needed. As we unwound, we shared our stories and our lives with these gentle people as well as our laughter. They are the kind of people who live their faith and we feel privileged to know we are now included in their network of friends.
Vernon is a horse breeder, grows roses and also runs the farm. He spent practically the entire afternoon riding on his lawnmower trying to cut the grass before the rains came. Kathy has retired from work and as well as her numerous craft projects, she spends her time lovingly working in her many gardens, which are little artistic oases under trees and along borders outside buildings. There is an abundance of gnomes, deer, rabbits, frogs and other little statues in amongst the fragrant flowers and trees, each set piece telling a story, many of them very humorously – I particularly liked the crocodile that was chewing a plastic foot and beside her, four baby crocs appeared to be chewing a hand. This is a child’s paradise and it brought out the inner child in me.
So much of our childhood conditions our responses to people and situations throughout our lives and my position about invisibility obviously stems from this. However, with Kathy and Vernon, as well as all the wonderfully helpful people we met along the way, I definitely feel anything but invisible. Thank you.