The First (but not the last) Deja Vu

Jul 30, 2022 | 0 comments

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This was Cowboy Breakfast morning at the Long Beach Rodeo Grounds — the first one I’d been to since BC (Before Covid) and the first “traditional” outing that I’ve always shared previously with Nyel.  We had gone every year that I can remember, Nyel dressed in his cowboy duds and describing himself as “all hat and no horse!”

This time I went as Tucker and Carol’s guest and the morning was full of deja vu!  For one thing, there were Judy Eron and Charlie Watkins of “Double J and the Boys” renown — both in full cowboy regalia and cooking up a storm behind the serving counter.  I was able to tell Charlie (the egg man!) “no runny parts” on my fried egg and he did it up “extra crispy” just like always!

Cranberry Cowgirl Duo, Ardell and Carolyn

“Little” Guy Glenn was flipping flapjacks, as usual, and I marvelled again at how long ago he’d been a third grader in my classroom.  (Or was he?  Neither of us quite remember… Maybe it was his sister, Carrie, and Guy was just the wannabe younger brother???)  His folks were next to us in line and over at a nearby table were Malcolm and Ardell MacPhail.  It felt like Old Home Week.

In fact, there were many familiar faces in the crowded room.  And, in that treasured Peninsula small-world way, the young man who found a seat next to Tucker turned out to be Charlie Watkin’s grandson, here on the Peninsula from North Bend with his family.  How fun!

And, I’ll bet I wasn’t the only one who was “seeing” people from past Cowboy Breakfasts — Nyel, Gordon and Roy, Florence and Azmi, my cowboy cousin Brad Pearson, Nyel some more — so many people that seemed to be enjoying the morning just out of sight.

Nyel After The Cowboy Breakfast, 2014

Once again, I felt our community’s greater dimension.   I love knowing that we are not solely the total of everyone who lives here now, but the sum of all who have lived here before us, as well.  Whether or not we knew them or have even heard their names, they had a part in the legacy we continue to share.  Lucky us!

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