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Writers Camp

Posted on Feb 27, 2015 by in Blog, Featured | 5 comments

Writers Camp

DO YOU WRITE? Poems, Stories, Articles, whatever is right to you, send right to our ‘Writers Camp’ and we’ll publish it within the confines of our editorial policy. Submit your written word to








This particular petunia came to my house via Barkasaurus’s friend across the street. She is also my friend and has been ever since I moved in this home five years ago this past summer.

Barkasaurus has always had great discerning attitudes about people and most she warns them not to come on her property. HA! But this one friend is also a friend to Barkasaurus. Yes, if I would let her loose I know where I would find her. Right across the street.

One day this past summer this friend brought me a purple Petunia plant. It has been on my front porch ever since. It is a bit faded now but has been so beautiful and was always noticed by my dog. She always pays very good attention to this plant. Every new bloom and every faded blossom.

This dog smells everything, grass, dirt, rocks, my shoes, the concrete walkway, the plants out front, the pine straw in our small doggie park for you know what!

Well this purple petunia captured the attention of my dog better than a meatball on a plate of food.

Every time I have to take Barkasaurus outside, and that is more than several times a day, we have to walk past ‘purple petunia’ on our way across the front porch.

One would think this was a love affair between a dog and a flower. Well maybe it is. You see my dog, a.k.a. Pumpkin, has to stop and visit purple petunia. First she approaches and looks at the flower, then slowly this dog puts her nose right into the center of the blossom and smells the flower. This ritual takes place going outside and coming in.

I do not know what I am going to do when this dog loses her purple petunia when winter comes. Maybe the aroma will suffice until spring comes once again and I can buy another purple petunia.
© Margaret McBride Walker





A lesson I have learned over a painful path is that forgiveness is really a gift I can give myself. As long as a grudge is held, you cannot be free of the pain. Forgiveness does not mean that things will be back to the way they were. It means that you do not carry that burden around twenty-four seven. Forgiveness means you can move forward in life and not be chained to the past.

Yes, it is hard, sometimes most difficult to forgive. Forgiveness and forgetting are two different things. But true forgiveness means you do not need to carry the pain on your daily journey. However, it does not have to mean that things continue as they were before the wound.

It takes a long time for the flames of hurt to die down to smoldering embers and finally die. But when the embers of pain are only ash that has no smoke then you can rise again.

Forgiveness does not mean you go back to the way things were. It means only that you are able to put the hurt behind you and move on into another place, a new place that does not have the match that started the fire. Self protection is an important part of this. If we do not feel safe and healed, then we will continue to fan the flames.

Once we have reached this place in our being we have reached a kind of forgiveness. A kind that sets us free from the hurt we experienced.

Forgiveness is a manner of moving forward in your self preservation, from hurt to peaceful existence. It is a kind of release from that which bound you to the one who you feel caused so much hurt. Forgiveness does not mean you need to put yourself back in that same place or situation that caused the pain. That is your choice.

A choice to love a peaceful existence and to do good works seems the most logical way to give yourself a better way to live on this earth.

© Margaret McBride Walker


When my daughter thought about moving me nearer to her and her family I had mixed emotions. I had been in Florida for over twenty years and loved the warm weather, the many citrus fruits available almost all year long, and I loved being near the sea and having so many restaurants independent of the restaurant chains, and all owned by local Floridians.

I knew deep in my heart I would not be as free to ‘roam’ as I had been. Not free to go on a cold winter’s day and drive on the beach and just sit and watch the waves roll in. The birds flying in formation, and one or two sea gulls strolling up and down the sand looking for a bite of food.

St. Augustine was a very historic town. When I worked in the historic section each morning walking to work, I imagined what it would have been like 200 or 300 years ago. I could imagine all the characters from the books I had read walking these same steps. It was such a step back in time to uncomplicated ways of living.

Imagination can take you anywhere you want to be. There are no rules, no guidelines, just your own thoughts. I always made full use of this fact. One of my best articles was about a very historic hotel in Daytona that was to be torn down. I went to Daytona and took pictures and wrote an article which was printed in that local paper. I was told it was a very popular article as the readers could actual visualize how the hotel was in its prime.

St. Augustine was large enough to have nice restaurants but small enough to almost walk around the downtown area. At Christmas, Every tree in the town square and along the waterfront was lit with Christmas lights. People walked about in costume appropriate to the early years of that city. St. Augustine will always have a special place in my memory of good things.

© Margaret McBride Walker




Everyone has to advertise or no body would by anything. But sometimes I wonder about the personality that dreams up these fabulous adjectives that describe the product. Some even care more about their product than some parents care about their children. Imagine that! Seems money drives about everything except the rising and setting of the sun and moon and stars.

Seems at one time there was something that was said to have such magical powers it could turn an old run down leather shoe, dried and muddy from long use and bring it back to life. Well, back to life to me means put the hide back on the animal, and make sure it was set free to live its life. Now I ask you…how can shoe polish bring a shoe’s leather back to LIFE? Will the leather on my shoes Moo now? Will the shoes roam the wild?

Next I come to that area called vitamins. Hmmm. Supposedly if one takes the right vitamins at the right time and in the right amount it will make you full of life. I might be dragging around, but every single part of me is still filled with life. None of the parts are dead! And the amazing thing is I am still filled with life even if I miss my daily vitamins. Now how about that! And if I take them how can I be ‘fuller’ than when I do not take them?

Now I come to something a bit more personal. They advertise on TV a garment that hides all your defaults. Well yes, I guess the faults are hidden beneath your clothing, but they are still there. They might pop out in different places depending on how tight they are and where they are.

Folks, take advertising with a grain of salt. Maybe put it under a different category….say like ‘magic’. And we all know ‘magic’ is only a way to fool the eye. Not change the world or your figure, or make leather shoes come to life. Or even make you ‘more full of life’! Not now, not today and not next week, or next year, or ever.
© Margaret McBride Walker, 2010





When my daughter thought about moving me nearer to her and her family I had mixed emotions. I had been in Florida for over twenty years and loved the warm weather, the many citrus fruits available almost all year long, and I loved being near the sea and having so many restaurants independent of the restaurant chains, and all owned by local Floridians.

I knew deep in my heart I would not be as free to ‘roam’ as I had been. Not free to go on a cold winter’s day and drive on the beach and just sit and watch the waves roll in. The birds flying in formation, and one or two sea gulls strolling up and down the sand looking for a bite of food.

St. Augustine was a very historic town. When I worked in the historic section each morning walking to work, I imagined what it would have been like 200 or 300 years ago. I could imagine all the characters from the books I had read walking these same steps. It was such a step back in time to uncomplicated ways of living.

Imagination can take you anywhere you want to be. There are no rules, no guidelines, just your own thoughts. I always made full use of this fact. One of my best articles was about a very historic hotel in Daytona that was to be torn down. I went to Daytona and took pictures and wrote an article which was printed in that local paper. I was told it was a very popular article as the readers could actual visualize how the hotel was in its prime.

St. Augustine was large enough to have nice restaurants but small enough to almost walk around the downtown area. At Christmas, Every tree in the town square and along the waterfront was lit with Christmas lights. People walked about in costume appropriate to the early years of that city. St. Augustine will always have a special place in my memory of good things.

© Margaret McBride Walker 2013



Sometimes I think there should be a book on how to tame the young. Maybe a great book for all the younger. Seems if one walks a straight line all their life then they should be able to take some side roads while they can still walk.

Grant you, maybe some of my side roads are unconventional but I see them as hurting no one, no one at all. Well maybe that was a mis-statement. Seems when I don’t walk the straight and narrow and expected and very dull and mundane path through the rest of my life I might be judged by others and that would be a reflection on my family. Or so I feel. Since I obeyed all the rules growing up and having my family I think I am entitled to stray off the expected path once in a while.

Mind you I am NOT thinking of pulling a big heist, or running naked at the Braves ball game. First of all I cannot run fast, can hardly run at all. And naked I will not be out in public.

There are just some things I want to do or not do between sun up and sun set. A little dust will not hurt me and surely not anyone else outside of my front door. Just maybe I would like to walk around all day long in my pajamas and even take my dog outside under cover of a raincoat.

What if I eat dessert for breakfast? Who’s to know? Maybe I want a cup of coffee at 3 in the morning. Who will it keep awake? No one I am acquainted with. I sleep after drinking 2 or 3 or 4 cups of coffee. In fact coffee puts me into a gentle and peaceful sleep.

Just seems there should be some sort of regulation that protects those of us who are over 50, 60, 70 or more as long as we have common sense. Doesn’t mean we have to use it 100% of the time. Sometimes common sense is so darn dull, So uninteresting. So not fun. What if I am late? Late for what? The only thing I can see in my future that being on time would be dreadful is my demise. Therefore I do not rush anywhere just to be on time.

© Margaret McBride Walker 2013


It was just an ordinary day. A day just like the thousands that came before it. There were no hints, no unusual pains, no anything that would warn me of what was about to happen.

I had not experienced any pains, none what so ever. No anything that would serve as a warning.

I was sitting at my computer as I usually did each day to catch up on e-mails, gossip, news and writing a few notes. But when I turned on the computer there were strange images flashing across the screen and the blackness!

I thought I knew what this meant but I also had high hopes that I would be able to make some sense of the whirling dervishes in my head and the BLACK I saw every where. Not a pleasant feeling, not a pleasant thought.

It became difficult to fathom was this my computer? OR was this my mind playing tricks….after all I am of that age some would call senile. HA.

I ‘blinked’, I got up and walked around, I cursed/cussed/swore and anything else to voice my thought loud and clear. This was not happening. Could not be possible. Why was the pain more mental than physical?

I dare not call my daughter for fear she might want to take me to ‘see’ the doctor.
Finally I sat back down in front of my ‘friendly’ computer but it did NOT smile back at me.

After a while, a few aspirins, foul language, more of that language, I made a call to the doctor.

You know that doctor who can fix anything. He said he could make a house call in two days. Two days stretched into 4 but finally he showed up. He performed the surgery, gave me follow up instructions and of course ‘THE BILL’.HA! But I am now back on line thanks to him and I am thinking…maybe I need a second computer just in case!
Margaret McBride Walker 1/01/15




‘GOLDEN’ always sounds good. Sounds positive. When I hear that word, ‘golden’, I often think back to Easter Egg hunts. The one who found the Golden egg ALWAYS got a terrific prize. The rest of us got wonderful and sweet candy eggs soon followed by belly aches of all sizes.

Golden also refers to those in high office who get a Golden Parachute. Sounds good, but basically what others are telling you is you are finished!!!
Get on your way and leave us young ones alone. Gone.

Remember the Golden Ring on the Merry-go-round? My Dad would always ride beside the horse upon which I sat so proudly and he would grab that ring so I could have another ride. That was a wonderful day.

Even coins that are made of Gold often are worth my social security maybe 40 times. Wonderful for those who have the coins. And then there is golden jewelry, such as bracelets, earrings, necklaces and other adornments often worn by the human Peacocks.

I have even seen gold fillings in teeth, gold veneers on front teeth so one’s ‘worth’ is so very obvious.

There is always a pot of Gold at the end of the rainbow. Nobody ever told me which end or where that was. I finally figured out I would never find that rainbow much less the pot of gold.

And when the sun shines across green meadows in the summer time it is as if someone not of the human race, has spread their gold across the landscape.

What about the sad times when one has to go and pawn their ‘gold’. They never get their money’s worth and most likely never retrieve their ‘gold’.

When all is said and done, the Gold is in our lives where ever we wish it to be. Not what you might think, but in the strangest places…so go and seek and ye shall find.
© Margaret McBride Walker





Well I hate to break the news but every single one of you who read this has an attitude. Yes, That’s what I said. ATTITUDE!

Your attitude is usually governed by a combination of things. Maybe the condition of your health, maybe that last person who pushed in front of you at a crowded elevator. Maybe it was that little old gray headed lady who stopped and let you roll right on up the grocery isle or she risked becoming a dead customer as you pushed your cart straight ahead as if you owned that aisle.

Secretly the little gray head thought maybe she will meet someone with a bigger cart, or someone taller and larger than she is. Or just maybe some little rascal will yell just as she goes whirring by and the child’s mother looks with disdain at the whirling dervish.

At any rate by now you can see your attitude is controlled by many things. But the largest responsibility of adjusting your attitude belongs to you. Since your attitude is controlled by you I wonder why it is so hard to keep it adjusted exactly where it should be on the attitude scale.

I understand you have many excuses for the way your attitude radiates towards others. And just maybe they might have a myriad of excuses on how the react to you and your ‘dumb’ attitude. I say ‘dumb’ because I have had the same thing….one or two times, maybe even a lot of times.

Oh well, Life is NEVER perfect but it is the best thing going!

© Margaret McBride Walker 5/25/2010





Ha! Don’t even think it. I know secretly you are wondering just what I am going to say. Would it be worth passing on to your best friend? Do you dare tell anyone you even read this? HA!


Let me begin with the fondness I found when I met up with the Spotted Leopard. She (yes, she is female), but not at all cantankerous like most are.


I met her about 6 years ago when I was living in Florida. She was quite elderly, not as old as I am. But she was desperately in need of a makeup. Maybe a do over!


Oh how I have come to rely on her on a daily basis. We go every where together. I am very rarely out and about without her, unless I am with my daughter. In lieu of a given name I have nicknamed her the ‘Spotted Leopard’ mainly because of her appearance.


She must be allergic to something that I have not quite figured out as yet. However, the allergies do not seem to impede her abilities to get about and in spite of her age she is probably more active than I am.


Even Pumpkin loves to go with us when we go out and about. Pumpkin is the best behaved when we are out in public. Most likely she realizes she will be left at home if she does not behave. The Spotted leopard has never complained about having to go anywhere with Pumpkin so it is a nice relationship. Thank goodness!!

One of these days me and Spotted Leopard are going for a glamour do over. With me it might be quite hopeless.

But with Spotted Leopard, I do not think she will mind one single bit. It will just take a bit of money to put us both back in the circulation mode of life.

Once we have done that, I might even have to change her name or at least make it ‘Fifty Shades of Perfect’ for my very old car!


© Margaret McBride Walker





Have you ever been late? Don’t deny it…there is always at least one occasion when a person is late for something. Even those of us who arrive so early that the ones at the other end cannot understand why you are there!

I hate being late. I hate to wait on someone else who does not arrive at the time we agreed upon. Then I feel out of sorts, in a bad mood and find ti hard to even be pleasant to the one who just arrived. I am sure they can see that right away. I am terrible about being able to hide my feelings.

I feel if I can get ready, be on time then why can’t every one else. Makes no sense to me.

I cannot understand why those who are always late even have a clock in their home. Seems obvious they never use it! Wonder what the think it Is for.

Ah, maybe they think it is fashionable to have a clock, a beautiful clock, one that garners attention by anyone who enters that room.

Grandfather clocks, alarm clocks, self wind clocks, electric clocks, eight day clocks, pendulum clocks…..and on and on. I have seen all of these at one time or another.

There is absolutely no excuse for anyone to be late except for death and paying taxes! HA!. Paying taxes is a thing I always seem to perform AFTER the deadline. And I know I am not alone in this. Finally this past tax season I was told I owed no taxes…don’t know if it was because of old age or insufficient income. Neither one seems a good situation as far as I am concerned. Either they are telling me I am so old, so very old, or the income cannot keep up with the out go.

Such is life. Even at this, it is great to be able to wake up every morning and know my eyes opened and my feet touch the floor!
© Margaret McBride Walker 2014




Many years ago when we moved to Kingston, Jamaica my son decided he wanted a fish tank for Christmas. So we looked and when he was not with me I bought one.

However they told me that the tank should be filled with water and let it stand for a day or two before putting in fish. So that was done. This was on a Thursday. Christmas was that Friday.

On Christmas morning I saw my son standing in front of the fish tank that had only water….no fish. He understood about not putting the fish in right away but it was hard for him with no fish and even harder for me, his Mom to see that sweet son want a fish so bad.

Well Friday was Christmas like I said but there was no store open on Saturday because in the English tradition the day after Christmas is Boxing Day. And guess what….the day after that was Sunday.

No ‘fish’ stores open on Sunday! Wow! Not what I had planned on that week before when he said he wanted a fish tank.

Finally on Monday he and I went to the ‘fish store’ and looked and looked and looked. He looked at every fish in that store many times over.

Finally he decided on a Red Tail shark! It was a beautiful fish. We took it home and like they said just ease the bag with fish and water gently into the tank and leave it for a few minutes.

After a while we opened the plastic bag and my son gently lifted the end so the fish could swim out into the tank.

I think I was as excited over seeing him so happy as he was finally having his fish, his very own fish.
© Margaret McBride Walker 2012


Wow. When my daughter said she was having some folks come and work in the yard, she NEVER told me what I was in for. She mentioned they were from her church. So my mind began wondering. Were they ‘old’ like me? If so they’d better be able to keep up with this Old Gray Head.

The ‘leader’ of the group met my daughter this morning at my home and we did a walk about discussing what I wanted done. Right away you will note what she thought and what I thought were on two different and parallel paths and never the twain shall meet. So trouble was a brewing.

Finally I said NO pine straw where grass needs to be! I want to cut the grass right up to the tree trunks and not have those rampant tree sprouts just growing in the pine straw. I think that might have been noted by my daughter and the man in charge. But I will have to stay awake at nights thinking how I can make sure she heard me. Emails might be ignored!

Phone calls go to a phone where the party on the other end is ‘not available’.

Maybe a certified letter! HA! Wouldn’t that catch her off guard. At any rate I plan to be awake, alert and outside when this action starts to take place and if the Lord above is willing I will outlast them until I am happy with the new look, minimal pine straw, and my one tree that I am allowed to order in place and growing well.

I look forward to all this new change going on in my yard, but am well aware I will have to forego my late morning and mid afternoon naps just to stay ahead of all the things she wants which I am not in agreement with.
Bad choice for the last word in this sentence, but this is NOT an English lesson.

After this phenomenon has been completed I am looking forward to a beautiful yard, front and back, and side to side. Thank you my dear Daughter.

© Margaret McBride Walker


Sometime ago I found the following information and was quite intrigued with what would happen if we all followed through on this sage advise. I can not determine the source from which it came but it is worth our thoughts and our way of raising our children.

10 things to learn from Japan

1. THE CALM Not a single visual of chest-beating or wild grief. Sorrow itself has been elevated.

2. THE DIGNITY Disciplined queues for water and groceries. Not a rough word or a crude gesture.

3. THE ABILITY The incredible architects, for instance. Buildings swayed but didn’t fall.

4. THE GRACE People bought only what they needed for the present, so everybody could get something.

5. THE ORDER No looting in shops. No honking and no overtaking on the roads. Just understanding.

6. THE SACRIFICE Fifty workers stayed back to pump sea water in the N-reactors. How will they ever be repaid?

7. THE TENDERNESS Restaurants cut prices. An unguarded ATM is left alone. The strong cared for the weak.

8. THE TRAINING The old and the children, everyone knew exactly what to do. And they did just that.

9. THE MEDIA They showed magnificent restraint in the bulletins. No sensationalizing. Only calm reportage.

10.CONSCIENCE When the power went off in a store, people put things back on the shelves and left quietly do in such a situation.

I often wonder what the citizens of this country of America would do in such a situation. Think about it…..there would be hoodlums running around with absolutely no thought to anyone else. The very idea of ’sharing’ would never enter their heads.

I shudder to think how the young people who will be born in the next decade will behave in any situation of crisis or ’want’. This is a sad commentary on how I ’see’ the future in years to come.

As a country we have lost or cast aside all the activities that denote caring human beings and instead our children and their children and those who follow them will be included in any conversation that dwells on human beings who have reverted to a selfish, uncaring, thoughtless, and cruel and murdering way of life not known in this country on such a large scale. My conclusion is this country will never become ’that civilized’

© Margaret McBride Walker


When we think of the Olympics we think of winners and losers or we think of the contestants or just maybe those behind the contestants. Like maybe parents, siblings, coaches, trainers, friendly competitors. We might even be bold enough to think of winning….maybe getting a blue ribbon or a gold medal.

But in our real world growing up the Olympics consisted of everyday mundane things….to the grownups. But to the younger ones, daylight was the first sign that the Olympics were beginning. Wonder what event each child will enter today? Will it be running…. through the house, jumping…on furniture, tossing or hurling……food on our plates,, catching….the latest illness, or just a general melee of activities known as the Decathlon…..1. consisting of pulling sister’s hair, 2. chasing the cat, 3. spilling catsup on the rug, 4.Letting the sink in the bathroom overflow, 5. letting little dribbles go where they are not supposed to go, …6. Eating the dog’s food,…7. Pulling up the neighbor’s prize flowers, …8. Playing with Mom’s lipstick and drawing pictures on the wall, …9. Cutting brother’s hair too short, and …10. Putting toothpaste in one’s hair.

These may sound unreal but I can attest that in my house for a period of years the Decathlon was run almost daily, the house pets often hid to make sure they were around for another day, and Mother’s hair turned gray over night.

Despite all of this turmoil Dad remained unaware of the chaos that took place each and every day. These antics seem to be known only to the Mothers in our society, never the Dads. Wonder why that is?

However, each of my children earned numerous Blue Ribbons in my opinion as they were the best source of laughs, of love, of hugs, of tears, of smiles, and being who they should be. I love you both!

© Margaret M. Walker


Rome was not built in a day but the down fall can be placed on a number of things, one of which would be morals of the citizens and greed.

Here in our beautiful state of Georgia and through out the United States things are changing and not for the better. There are several reasons I think we are falling into the depths of despair and ruin.

One of the reasons I believe is that TV as we know it today has let everyone down in setting high standards. Some of the programs show unmarried teenage girls, nearly naked women, and it seems the language used by the rappers is language we would NOT have let our children use at any time.

Most children learn by their most important teachers…the parents, or parent. Never in my years growing up and raising my children would my actions have been condoned or those of my children if we stepped over the line of common courtesy and dignity. Many children are left to their own devices and seek comrade ship among whoever is available. And most of ‘the available’ companions are those who also skip school, use foul language and imitate what they see on Television.

Years ago in the ‘50’s I can remember coming from Newnan to Atlanta at night with a date to see a movie. We thought nothing of walking along the streets in downtown Atlanta. People were friendly, respectful, polite, and minded their own business.

I have become so angry about how the influences outside of the home have taken our children and changed them into monsters, selfish individuals and murderers.

I have nothing against rapping, but why not do it to set the examples that will make it safe for your children in the future, for the older people who fear leaving their homes at night. Why not change your actions, why not the Television companies take charge of content and not concentrate so much on the money they get from nefarious advertisers. Why not be our brothers keeper when we see something going wrong? Why not insist that the television companies change their policies? Why not stop buying products that promote things that corrupt our young people? Why not take charge of our children and see that they have consequences to bad behavior? Why not insist that our people governing our neighborhoods make sure they are safe from invaders, from robbers, from murderers? Just the other day on the news was a very, very huge drug bust with many participants. Would this have happened in the early years of television? Or in Georgia? No, I don’t think so.

There was a time we NEVER locked our doors at night. Now we have deadbolts, chain locks, and other locks just to protect ourselves from what goes on in our neighborhoods.

Well if we do not take charge, ………we will see the downfall of a once beautiful and wonderful city, state, and country. By then it is too late.
© Margaret M. Walker


Right away you as a reader must think the Old gray Head has gone completely off her rocker. Well I am here to say ‘NOT there yet!’

I am not guaranteeing I won’t ever be, but I am sure I am not now. When my children were little they always did it. Never failed. When one was slacking off the other would take over. They worked like a team and never slacked one time, not even one time!

And my dog learned this from some one but certainly not from me. This is something I would NEVER teach a dog, much less a child. But both my children learned this either from some one, or they were just born with this natural God given talent.

And recently I came to understand that the telephone has this same quality of a very unique ability. I don’t understand it, not now and certainly not in years past.

Where does this talent come from? Who teaches the kids and who taught my dog? Also how did the telephone take on this quality when it is not a living breathing individual? But often acts like it! My kids usually use this quality mostly when I am sleeping or very busy. My dog does it almost every single time I get to sit down, take a nap, or want to sleep late in the morning.

By now I am sure most of you understand my frustration, perhaps because you have experienced it just like I have.

Every one of these people, be it children, or objects like the phone, or even my dog, always need and want my attention just at the moment I finally sit down to eat, or take a nap, or want to sleep late in the morning. Is that a difficult request to honor? After all I am the one who feeds you or pays your bill. And children grow up and move out. HA HA. I can stop paying for the phone and learn smoke signals. And as for the dog…you can be relegated to an outside dog house in a fenced yard. How you like that?
© Margaret M. Walker



As a mother, I cannot ethically leave the foregoing article without writing this one.. Yes, my daughter is not as sentimental as I am. She doesn’t have the time. She is so busy trying to take care of a teenager, and a whitehead for a mother. And I am sure I try her patience more and more each day that goes by.

But the most miraculous part of this whole story is she is a winner, not in this tug of war we have going on, but in life in general. She is so practical, and so able to juggle a teenager, a job, and a wayward mother!

I know there are times she would like to either put me up for adoption to some unsuspecting human who has no elder soul living in their life. Someone who thinks it would be so wonderful to have an old Gray Head in their lives.

There are times when I shudder to think if she only knew she could actually ‘divorce’ me, and I crawl into a mental dark hole until the dust settles down. HA!. Hopefully that day will never arrive when she begins to see the light.

Currently we have declared a truce. I try to behave when she is around. I try to hide all the little ‘memories’ as I call them until she has gone home.

I do this because I need her in my life. I love her in my life. Sometimes I have to bite my lip to keep from arguing. If she makes a complaint I try to nod in agreement, hide that little memory until I am alone again and be more careful the next time she comes to call.

Perhaps I could be a super international spy hiding clues, dodging verbal bullets and staying one step ahead of the chaser. Life brings us so many clues in how to live, how to love, and how to be loved.

© Margaret McBride Walker






Shortly before succumbing to cancer in Ottawa, Canada in 2005, Omar Sheriffe Vernon el Halawani” completed the manuscript for a novel “When Conchi Blows”. The book was published posthumously in July 2013 by his cousin Robert Vernon, sole Executor and Trustee of his Estate and Scholarship and Book Trusts set up to benefit students in the medical field in the Caribbean . The book was officially launched in October 2013 at the Jamaica Consulate in Toronto under the auspices of the Jamaica High Commissioner to Toronto, Mr. Seth George Ramocan.

The author, son of Dr. Kathleen Vernon and her Egyptian husband was born in Montego Bay, Jamaica. He went to Munro College, Happy Grove and grammar School in England. He served in the British army on the Rhine and returned to Jamaica working as a broadcaster (Jerry Vernon) at Jamaica Broadcasting Corporation. He later migrated to Canada furthering his education at Sir George Williams University, Carlton University and the University of Toronto, obtaining a BA in Political Science, MA in International Affairs and Bachelor in Education, and continued in the teaching profession in Ottawa.

Inspired by his Vernon family history the author worked for many years on this book which is set in the time of slavery and sheds Jamaican insights gleaned from many years of researching through family records, old wills and birth and marriage certificates, etc. As laid out in his will the book royalties will be added to Scholarships the author Vernon el Halawani established in the names of his late mother, Dr. Kathleen Vernon, maternal grandfather Dr. Alexander Vernon, and cousin, Dr. Leonard Arnold. Everyone is encouraged to purchase this book, “When Conchi Blows”. It is a part of our history and has had some good reviews. It’s also a gift that keeps on giving. In Toronto, the book is available at A Different Booklist and through (Can.), (USA) Amazon.UK.(UK)[/author_info] [/author]




Growing up I was taught that America was the land of opportunity. One should set goals and work hard.
Many of us have done just that. As children with parents who saw the necessity of an education, we went to school and then on to college if at all possible.
Many times this bit of higher education came at a price our parents paid for by long hours, deprivation of many necessities and hard work because they loved us and saw the need for their children to become educated citizens.
I know it was hard for them in their later years to have to work so hard just so my sister and I could have that education which was so valuable.
And as a result of our education many dreams fermented for years and some actually became a reality.
Through a span of quite a few years marriage came, children were born and responsibilities grew.
Along with those duties, many dreams  began to ferment over the years. One of them was to make use of past experiences, education and general knowledge.
Having lived in Jamaica for a period of five years when my husband at the time was sent there to work, I grew very fond of the people which included the workers at my husband’s work place.
Finally we returned back to the United states, divorced, and I returned to school to get a Master’s Degree. I knew this was important if I wanted to  work in a position which would be interesting, would allow me to  independent, and find my place in the working world.
Back in the deep dark regions of my memory there began a dream to grow larger and larger until I felt the need to act upon it.
My children were now on their own, self sufficient and my divorce was long ago.`
It was later on when I began thinking about how I would want to work, using my skills, my education and my life experiences. So I began investigating.
My interest grew and grew. The more I investigated the more I began to think there is a real possibility to do what I have been dreaming of for quite a few years.
I went to the computer and looked up the requirements  for this particular job.
What I found was something that was exciting, and my credentials were more than enough according to the WEB. Hmmm. However the one fact that was not mentioned seemed to be way beyond my powers.
The human factor surpasses the qualifications set in stone or rather in print.
NOWHERE in my exploration of the encyclopedia was the word ’MONEY’ mentioned.  Hmmm. You may wonder just how that comes into play.
So I retraced my steps. Qualifications said ‘have a degree (I have two) and knowledge of the country where one would be sent‘. Well having lived in Jamaica for five years I certainly had knowledge of the people, the religious groups, the politics, the scarcity of some household items, living through a year long drought, and the kindness of the people from the higglers on the street to those sitting in Parliament.
Now any of you reading this might wonder why I am writing about this.
After many years, more letters than I can count, a phone call from a very kind politician I became very confused.
I did not understand what the problem was. I was more than qualified, more experienced in the knowledge of the people, the customs, the political scene and I certainly loved the country and its people  very much.
Finally one day the explanation became quite clear. I saw where a well known female who had famous parents was recently appointed as the Ambassador to a foreign country. I do not think this female had as much knowledge of this particular country, nor had she lived there not five years, NOT EVER!
So finally my naiveté became so apparent……The qualifications stated in the literature mean absolutely nothing if a big pocket book can buy what some one else has earned the right to have a chance at the same kind of employment but only has credentials and  an empty pocket book.



This book title, “Whistling Pops” came to me while thinking about the years gone by.

I pictured an old man going for a walk, with his hands behind his back, whistling a tune. Sometimes his head may be up, looking at the sky, maybe an attempt to feel proud and satisfied, as he thinks about his many accomplishments, with his family and friends and his devotion to his job and how grateful he is to have walked this earth. Sometimes his head is down as he walks, perhaps feeling a bit curious, regretful or wondering of the roads ahead.

So to this very elegant man going for his walk, sometimes lucky enough to be walking with his wife of many years, holding hands, as they both whisper to each other, exchanging love memories about when their lives first began with each other, maybe one day while the soft wind blows in the warmth of a summer sky, we too will be going for that walk of life, wondering how it all went by so fast and did we do our best.

When that moment of true self kicks in and the perpetual light is about to show us the way to our final rest, remember him. Remember Pops and how he whistled.



THE ‘E’, ‘I’ , ‘U’ WAY

Can you imagine how these little letters could have such an impact on our language? I have often wondered how ‘inability’ comes from unable. Why not ‘unability’. And how about unable and enable?

We as small children are introduced to ‘things’ like this in our English classes. Some of which have never been heard by the children until the day they go to school. Mind boggling to say the least.

Through the years I have become enchanted with this language of ours, but also just as I am amazed and enchanted, I have also been stupefied by the small but important changes we had to learn. Even today, I was forced to use that ‘tome’ called a ‘dictionary’ just to be able to understand every single nuance associated with each of the above words.

Well here it is! I was totally ‘un-enabled’ to do anything today because I had not been enabled by anyone who could explain why I should use ‘enable’ in one place and ‘unable’ in another.

As a child I had the opportunity to visit a large light house. I remember going up the steps one at a time and became very impatient. I wondered that everlasting kid question we all had when stupefied, ‘WHY?’ Going round and round became such a nauseating problem I was almost unable to climb even though I had been enabled by patient parents and my inability to understand was completely passed over by them.

As I grew up and had to face English teachers every single year I eventually came to understand I MUST learn certain things or I would never be able to leave school successfully. Yes, I could leave but that would impose more restrictions on my future that I was no where ready to consider.

So when that cloud over my head finally cleared, I decided I had a real job ahead…learn what was needed and get on with it. HA! Good luck kids!

© Margaret McBride Walker

When you decide to go to a doctor you think you should be informed and part of the solution. When that happens amazing results can take place. When one butts heads with a doctor it can only mean something went wrong.
Recently there was an incident when one went to a doctor that was recommended  but with unsatisfactory results. This patient was told to keep the next appt but was not given any details other than at another office, the time and what was going to be done. Seems this patient was completely in the dark.
So the patient went on line and looked up this ‘new procedure’ that was to take place. At the site was a questionnaire to be taken before this particular procedure was to be done. The very first thing it said was it was necessary if previous procedures had not been successful. Well, this patient knew that previous procedures had been very successful so that presented a problem.
The patient wrote the doctor, got no response, so patient wrote once again. This patient decided to make a new appt hoping information would be forthcoming. Well let me tell you…………….nothing was forthcoming! Well not exactly, new appointmemts and times were given but no information as to why patient’s concerns were not and had not been addressed.
Seems to me when one seeks a doctor he/she anticipates being a partner in the recovery, the procedure and the information regarding all of this.
Each and every one of us sees a doctor from time to time. We should be able to feel confident, well assured of the expected outcome, and answers to the ‘whys’ a doctor may have for changing things up.
If this does not happen, we can go along with  ‘the crowd’  or we can demand pleasantly that we be part of the solution and if this is not happening, then we should respect our self, our health, our caregivers to seek one who is in tune with us, the patient!



I am sure every one of you reading this wonder what the (SHHHH) is referring to. Well I know of no other way to talk about ‘deafening’ silence. How can that be? If it is deafening, how can it be so quiet one cannot hear?

Our language has some really strange ways of being able to verbally draw pictures. But deafening silence is certainly a rung above even that.

Never in my life have I understood how something so quiet, so still, could be so LOUD TO BE DEAFENING!!!

Can you imagine anyone from another country not speaking English being able to understand what we say?

If we are able to say the ‘silence was deafening‘, why can’t we say ‘the explosion of the firecracker was so silent’?

Do you ever wonder how you got through school and can carry on an intelligent conversation? Looking back I think it is a down right miracle that so many of us can talk like this and we still understand each other.

There I go again ‘down right’ what does that mean? Is it the opposite of ‘up left’? And does ‘up left’ mean just what ‘down right’ does not mean?

Sounds like we are giving stage directions to our speech. What a crazy thought. And yes, there is another one that befuddles me from time to time.

That one is ‘inside out’ and is there a reverse of that used in our language? Do we ever use ‘outside in’?

Ha!. I sincerely hope I have managed to ‘befuddle’ you as much as possible!!!
© Margaret McBride Walker




What a big word. Especially to a five year old. I remember the day I first heard this word. It was on a Saturday morning as we were leaving my Dad’s office. Mom was in a hurry because once we left there we were going shopping.

As we were going down the long hallway to the main entrance I became enamored with the tile floor. It was made of black and white alternating squares. And each square was a perfect size for my four year old feet.

I found great pleasure in being able to step only in the beautiful shiny black ones and not touching the white ones.

As I walked carefully along my Mom was urging Dad to get me to keep hurrying along so she could shop. Right at that moment I heard my Dad respond to Mom’s urgings when he said, ‘She is just being a procrastinator right now.’

Wow! That big word was all about me! I smiled a great big grin and went about my job of staying on the black squares. I was being so perfect and my chest swelled up with such pride at what my Dad had said about me.

All that day every time I looked at my Dad I just about burst with pride about how he had describe the wonderful job I had done in walking only on the black squares and never touching the ugly white ones.

That day popped up in my mind often as I grew up. Remembering it always made me smile at my wonderful Dad and how he had said in his own way, ‘What a wonderful job I was doing, walking on those squares.’

I still smile every time I hear that word, but now I know the real meaning and it reminds me of that wonderful man who was my Dad no matter how I behaved.

© Margaret McBride Walker




What I am about to tell you takes on something similar to work. Now that I think about it I am so glad I had a cohort in this design of mine.

Each time I would go outside from my front door there was a wasted space about 7 by 8 feet. Not big. Not big at all. But anyone who knows me well knows I am determined, stubborn and ‘know it all.’ What they don’t know is the one little word I left out that last sentence… I THINK I know it all. HA! Sometimes I am right and sometimes I am not. Those last ‘sometimes’ hardly ever get written about.

Well my plan was why not screen in this little front porch. No big deal. Well it took over a week of my giving directions and the nice man who was doing this makeover trying to stay calm as the Old GRAY Head kept ‘adding on’ all the things she wanted.

Everyone who sees it remarks how nice it is. What a nice space to sit and not be bothered by mosquitoes, etc.

What the don’t know is I smile inside each and every time I go out or I come in. It’s that screen door. The screen door with that little hook that slides down into the little eye attached to the wooden frame. When that happens the fireworks go off, my face becomes a great big smile and all the memories of a terrific childhood come flooding back.

It brings back those memories from long ago living in the house that Dad built with a screened porch and a swinging screen door making this exact sound. Oh how sweet it is.

© Margaret McBride Walker




A long time ago in a very small town in West Virginia, Elkins, to be exact, my family would visit my mother’s sisters who lived there. One was an ‘in town dweller’ and the other one was a ‘country dweller‘. It was on the small farm belonging to that Auntie that my sister and I would go with her up to the top of a big hill behind her farmhouse which was very near the airport.

Once there, we would lie on our backs and look Heaven ward and exclaim about all the things we ‘saw in the clouds’.

Those were simple times. They were enjoyable times. And they were fun times. Once in a while if we were lucky we could lie there quietly and all of a sudden we would hear a plane taking off. That was all it took. We knew a plane was soon going to fly right over our heads. So close we felt we could almost reach up and touch the plane itself.

Many times we saw ‘animals’ in the clouds and sometimes castles and even flowers.

Such an innocent time. A time before all the electronic games. Before television. Before cell phones. And never did we disagree about what was in the sky. I know what I saw might not have been what she saw but it didn not matter. We had the best time doing that on sunny days.

When it was rainy and we could not lay in the grass, we had to look for other things to occupy our minds until the sun came out again.

Looking back, I often wonder what the children of today have to reminisce about. What happy memories do they have to build a firm family foundation on?

An most of all I silently weep they these children today will never know that kind of joy.

© Margaret McBride Walker




For some of you one might think that sounds slightly carpenter-ish! Yeah, I know, another made up word. But what fun it is to do just that.

I remember when I was little and my Dad built us a playhouse that we could actually walk into and stand up. It had two windows and a front door. Outside were two little benches. Oh how we loved that little house.

Now the connection…..I can always find one….I remember Dad saying it would take quite a few two by fours! HA! See I can still remember some 75 years later. We had much fun in that play house for years and I still have such fond memories of those times.

But the ‘two by four I am referring to today belong to me and my dog. These two by fours get so much exercise every single day. We use them to go outside and to come back in. We use them all around the house. Sometimes I wonder why I only have two and Pumpkin has four. Seems a little biased to me. Does it have anything to do with our brain? Hmm. Aha, Maybe the smarter we humans are the less legs we need.

But on the other hand my dog is very smart. I might even go so far to say she is a genius. She knows what quite a few words mean and I am not talking about ‘food’ or ‘sit’. She knows ‘put the flag out and bring the flag in’. She knows ‘dinner time’ and LIE DOWN! HA, that was the first thing I taught her, I needed her to learn that right away or I would lose control. She also knows ‘let’s put the mail out’ and ‘let’s check the mailbox’.

She also knows Clara’s automobile and she knows ‘BAD’.

But the best thing in the world is she knows I love her and she loves me! What more could one ask for between and Old Gray Head and her dog. Never had a better equation than this set of two by fours.
© Margaret McBride Walker




When living in Jamaica I tasted some really ‘hot stuff’. It was the Scotch Bonnet Pepper. There was a very small little bar and grill in down town Kingston.
The seats were old back seats of cars and the tables were just planks of wood.

However, there was a tomato juice drink that used the Scotch Bonnet pepper in it and that would really clean one’s sinuses! We would go there on one or two occasions when we had a really bad head cold. That drink would open up the sinuses of a dead man. As long as I live there will always be that memory of the Scotch Bonnet pepper in the back of my brain and today I hurt just from thinking about it.

But no one can dispute its power of clearing the head.

What else do we think of when we say ‘hot stuff’? Maybe something we tried to take off the grill with our hands because there was no utensil handy.
Yep, that’s hot stuff!

But being female I know there is another ‘hot stuff’. That’s when we receive a compliment or when we feel we deserve one. OF course there are more refined ways to say ‘hot stuff’ but you know what I mean.

Now, when a woman of a certain age (maybe closer to a century than she is to her own birth), feels she should receive a compliment, she might get her nose out of joint when one is not given. But nevertheless she could be dressed to the nine’s, or just might feel very good at that particular moment.

Now that is ‘HOT STUFF’.


Now please don’t skip over this thinking it is all about the blood and guts things….nothing at all like that.

When things are ‘faintly medical it could mean anything from surgery to what goes on in the waiting room of a doctor’s office. Hmm.

Actually that is where all the action is. Right out in front of every one. It is all about those people who are very sick or those who had nothing else to do that morning. I confess I needed to do some research on this particular vein (excuse the medical reference, la de da). I am talking about first hand witnessing in the outer room…where those who are sick come. Where those who have nothing else to do that day come. Where some one like me might go to gather information just about ‘Things Faintly Medical’.
My particular thing is watching the various ways people think they are protecting themselves from all the germs of the sick people. They do this by using Purel then licking their fingers to turn the pages in a magazine. Another past time is surreptitiously listening in on phone conversations which seem to be only for the benefit of those sitting near.

My goodness when one ‘listens’ in you would think the President of the United Sates was right there giving orders to his staff. I do not understand why some people can be so rude so unthinking to yell into a phone. If I was the person on the other end I would hand up! But then I could not see the look of surprise on the one who was left dangling. Actually that is one of the bonuses of having to wait a long time to see the doctor. You can always tell when the other party hung up on the waiting patient. Just look at the facial expression when all of a sudden they act like they have been cut off.

Yep, they were cut off alright but it was not accident. And now it’s my turn to tell the doctor I am fine, see you next year!

© Margaret McBride Walker




The first time I laid eyes on you I was enchanted by your beauty. The sparkling blue reflected in my eyes. And every single day seemed to bring my emotions to an overwhelming desire when I gazed upon your beauty.

Age did not matter, Never did and never will have such an impact on me as that first time I saw you.

And when you sang I heard the rhythm echoed in my heart. It still beats there from time to time but is becoming weaker as I have not heard it as clear as that first time I saw you.

You are as fresh as the mountain air that blows gently down the hillside. You are that soul awakening power that comes from the beat of the tin drums. When I hear those voices still in my head, a tear will flow down my cheek because I remember just how sweet you are.

It has been many, many years since I first saw you and to this day nothing as I remember is as powerful as that first time when we met.

If I listen quietly and hopefully there are times I can hear that beat…the heart beat for which you are known. Only those people who have that sweet privilege of meeting and getting to know you will ever know such joy, such happiness, and such peace.

I would give just about anything to see you one more time. To feel those simple pleasures once again.

Oh, Jamaica, how I loved thee, still do and will always love the beauty, the kindness and the warmth you sent my way. Thank you from my heart to yours.

© Margaret McBride Walker


(Recently when I went to the doctor she told me I should not wear high heels because I might fall. The following was sent to her:_


I know, you’re thinking I forgot the apostrophe. But where would you put it? Before the ‘S’ or after the ‘S’ ? That all depends.

Are you talking about that ‘heel’ you once knew? The one who had no respect for anyone besides himself. Or was it that guy from your college years who was always acting like a heel? I find it amazing when we use the word ‘heel’ that we usually put a masculine characteristic to that word.

And yet, when we speak of the actual thing, the ‘heel’ as in shoes we think of females. Don’t know why this is. Especially the dichotomy of such a word is confusing I am sure to those not born into the English language.

Just the other day I realized there is more to this word ‘heels’ than one first thinks about. Most people think young women are the ones who should wear heels. Why can’t the old gray head wear heels if she wants? I am sure each time I leave the house in ‘heels’ someone is thinking, ‘She’s too old, she should not be wearing those as she might fall.’ Fa la la. If I fall I want to be wearing high heels. I want to be elegant when doing that. Besides if I fell wearing ugly flat shoes most people would want to put on an old woman then they would say she is fragile. Can’t leave her alone for a minute!

No one will ever know just what a beautiful pair of high heels can do to a woman’s outlook on the day. Not unless you are a woman. I am still a woman, just a bit older than most. And you will never know what thoughts go through a females’ head when she is wearing a beautiful pair of high heels that she cherishes so much.

Sometimes I will put them on when I am planning on going somewhere with my daughter, but at the last minute I might change them for something more sensible. Once I am in the car I rue that decision. But it was made to save arguments over what one should or should not wear according to another person. However, there are times that I will put on my most beautiful pair of high heels and maybe just go to the grocery store. But when I do, I can imagine the customers seeing some one who is not afraid to be who she wants to be. Not just someone who is being what they should be. I refuse to give up everything just because the hair is gray!

© Margaret McBride Walker



If your girdle’s too tight and you can’t breathe, maybe this is just for you.

Do you get up in the morning wondering who is out doing what, when they should be doing something else. Sometimes we as humans have nothing better to do than worry that someone else is not walking on the same path as us and not thinking just like we do.

When that happens then the entire day is ruined from their point of view. Oh my Golly, oh my Gee. I know how that feels from time to time but it finally leaves me so frustrated I had to give it up…..about 99 percent of the time. That other 1 percent I can deal with and can control, mostly during the day and then sleep it off during the night. By the next morning there is always something more to worry about….. and it is naturally not my problem, not any of my business, but it is there looming big on the horizon. So big I need to check on it often during the day.

It takes a lot of planning on my part. It takes a lot of self will on my part. Just to let that dang problem go when it is not mine. However, when another’s problem becomes mine then I go into action.

Take that big tree next door. The one that overhangs my roof. The one that drops its leaves on my roof. The one who’s leaves will rot my roof and cost me money. Hmm. What should I do?

Yes, I admit after several conversations and two ‘nice letters’ the tree suddenly lost three big branches…..all overhanging my roof. How wonderful for that tree to just up and do such a thing! And the neighbor did get a nice thank you note about how well behaved her trees had been. And friendships go on!

© Margaret McBride Walker



Many years ago when I was living in Jamaica, I met a Jamaican friend in a class we both took with a professor from Western Carolina University. Once that class was over and my family was moving back to the states and I was going through a divorce, I went to Western Carolina in Cullowhee, NC to continue my graduate studies.

My friend Heather also came up from Jamaica and we both got our graduate degree the following June.
After many years I lost contact with Heather. So one day I went to the white pages for Jamaica and lo and behold I found ‘Heather Davidson’ listed. So I wrote a long letter to try and reconnect with her. You can imagine my surprise when I went to the mailbox one day and there was a letter from Heather.

But Wait…that was not the big surprise.

This Heather was not my Heather. However, she did find some info and passed my info on to the school where my Heather had been working. And I waited for something from my Heather.
Life always surprises us in such strange ways. I never did find my Heather that went to graduate school with me. But here is the surprise.

The Heather who received the letter I had written picked up the correspondence and today we continue our back and forth writing via E-mail. Recently she sent me many photos of Jamaican history from days of old and I actually wept with tears of homesickness as Jamaica was my home for many years.

Yes, I believe my God took something away from me but put something of equal or greater value in its place. This new Heather has become my friend and one that I look forward to hearing from quite often.

What a nice person who stepped up in the role of ’friend’ without being asked, and truly has been such a pleasure for me to have in my life.
© Margaret M. Walker 2013


This problem is not obvious, not very obvious at all. It only becomes obvious when a female of our population brings it up. Otherwise it is not discussed. At least not discussed by those who could make a difference. And that group would be MEN!

There is absolutely no reason for men to even think about this problem, let alone discuss it, or try to find a solution.

This problem is simply that men ‘seem’ to become more knowledgeable as they age. They seem to garner experience simply by getting older. And find a man, somewhat tall, gray hair, nice physique and you find someone in the general population, including those who have the position of hiring and promoting, viewing him as potential work force.

On the other hand, take females in the same age bracket, with gray or white hair, and the general public has been led to think these women are over the hill, not ‘up’ on current things, and lack experience (otherwise why would they not be working)?

This may be stretching things a bit, but did you ever wonder why mostly females ‘color’ their hair, buy wrinkle removing creams, and do not advertise their age.

Somewhere in the evolution of mankind we have become believers of things not always factual. I’ve been there, done that. And I admit it was so I would not seem ‘too old’ for the job. No one ever met me in person, no one ever verified that I was intelligent, no one ever saw enough to even think I was capable.

They always want one’s resume. Well when a female submits that to those higher up, it is at that point that they figure out we females are no spring chickens. Never mind our experience, our desire to earn an honest income, and our desire to be able to be self sufficient. It seems we are unacceptable.

I’ve thought about this for a long, long time. And I had the time because I could not find a job.

So I completed a small self test.

1. Can she read?

2. Can she make decisions?

3.Does she have the educational background?

4. Does she have the desire to work hard?

5. Does she have good references?

6. Is she too old? (Wonder who decides that?)

7. Why does she want to work when she is obviously a Senior citizen?

8. How would it look for this company to hire a white headed female?

9. Would that give a sense of stability to the public?

B. Here are the answers I came up with as I assumed would be made by most men.

1. She probably can read, since she cooks and uses recipes.

2. She is able to decide what to wear for that day, or to that occasion.

3. She does have an educational background, But that was so long ago.

4. She says she will work hard but women have many excuses for staying

home under the general label of ‘so much to do’.

5. Her references are so very old. (wonder why, she can’t get a job to update

those old references.

6. Am I too old? Yes, for bearing children, not for using my brain!

7. I want to work to be able to stay self sufficient and for the purpose of

being mentally stimulated and productive.

8. How it would look for you to hire an ’Old Gray Head’ that’s up to you

And how you present your decision to hire an over 50 female.

9. Your company’s sense of stability would not be harmed in any way

especially if ‘that woman’ you hired did the job as well as any other

person could.

C. Here are my answers which are true!

1. Yes, I can read and am also a published writer!

2. I can not only make decisions but I an follow them through to completion!

3. Yes, I am educated…B.F.A. from University of Georgia and a M.A. degree from Western Carolina University

4. From 2000 to 2006 I drove 50 miles each way from below St. Augustine, fl, to Jacksonville, Fl. Working from 7 am until 8pm.

6. It is hard to have current references when people usually do not hire any female over 40!

7. Work is what generates new ideas, passion for living, not existing, and staying current with the outside world.

8. When the one who hires does not respect the background education, work history and only wants a ‘Worker’ then respect is lost.

9. This one is a challenge to any one who has the intestinal fortitude to hire me. But you just might get a surprise!

These are my thoughts on why women are often passed over even when they are so very capable.

© Margaret McBride Walker

Sept. 2014



Not long ago I was sitting in a big chair and nearby was a small table with several drawers. It had been in that same place ever since I moved here almost 8 years ago.

Thoughts ran through my head remembering my daughter saying you need to go through things and get rid of ‘STUFF’ It was at that moment I knew her definition of ‘stuff’ was NOT the same as mine.

I opened the drawer, knowing full well what was about to happen. I am such a sentimental old fool that I knew the floodgates would open and would not stop. But in spite of my intuition, I kept right on. The first thing I saw was a bit of construction paper from years ago. On this paper was a short sweet message written by a small had over 45 years ago.

My daughter would not understand why it was still there. But I knew.. I knew what love had been there when small hands had cut out the shape of a heart and carefully written a message I Knew without even reading it one more time.

This small bit of paper was shaped something like a heart. And written carefully on one side was her name in big letters. I turned the heart over and read those words I knew by heart all these years.

I took this small paper heart and put it in an envelope. On the outside of the envelope I carefully wrote her name.

I knew when she would find it, she would know without opening the envelope what was there. I knew because she had been in that drawer many times growing up. But what she did not know was what I had added to that small heart. It was an easy choice and came naturally when I had added, ‘I love you too.’

@Margaret M. Walker 2014



© Margaret McBride Walker 2014


Memory has such a way with us in how it comes and goes depending on the time, the place and the particular situation. There is school…yes, memory plays a huge part in this time of our life. We have to remember facts and figures in order to pass our tests and get promoted. Memory also hits us hard when we cannot remember what Mom told us to do and when to do it. Memory affects those of us in school. It affects those of us who have a household to run, or a job outside of the home which will ultimately affect our income. See what all we can blame on memory? Sometimes I am sure we use the word ‘forgot’ when we are face to face with those who remind us what we needed to do. Parents can be so ‘perfect’ when it comes to checking our memory. Oh how I remember Mom asking me, ‘Did you clean your room? Did you make your bed? Did you feed the dog? Did you set the table? Did you put your dirty clothes in the laundry? Did you…Did you…did you? “: And on and on and on. Everything we do began with learning and remembering. Funny how the time changes from one thing to another depending on how much we want to remember. Sometimes I think we truly do have selective memory. I know I can remember the most difficult series of things if I am motivated by the end result….for instance just going to the grocery store if my reward is some candy. Or how to set up a piece of equipment such as a printer for the computer when I want to print out a new story.
And then my memory suddenly goes into a nose dive when I have to remember to get on line and pay my bills. Seems like there is no real reward for doing that. Not for me anyway, only those to whom I owe money. The one thing we all need to remember is to let our children know every single day that they are precious, that we love them more than anything and that they are what makes our life so beautiful. So please, every one of you who reads this, go right now and tell someone you love them more than anything else. Their smile will make your day beautiful. And that will make beautiful memories for them when they are grown. © Margaret McBride Walker



Long time ago when I was a small child my Mother had the most beautiful smelling perfume I have had known. I am sure it didn’t cost as much as it does today. I would gladly give up most of my grocery money and eat one meal a day until I had enough to buy it just one time. But I am sure my daughter would berate me for the next year if I were to be so foolish.


At her time in her life now, she does not understand how the Old Gray Heads fill up their days with memories and thoughts from the past.


It would bring back so many sweet memories from the past when as a child there were no worries, no pain, nothing a child would recognize as a negative. Whenever I caught the aroma of this perfume, I quickly knew my Mom was near. What a nice feeling.


What a safe feeling, what a feeling of love because I knew my Mom was nearby.


Growing up I always associated this aroma with everything dear that represented my Mother.


And also, my Dad, because he was the one who gave it to her.


I am sure they never knew the loving images they imprinted in my mind, my thoughts that would last every so long.


The name does not really represent this perfume at all. Only because the perfume is so sweet, and thoughts of love are always associated with it by the daughter who has become an Old Gray Head.


Sometimes it brings tears to my eyes when I remember the love, the kindness, the support, the thoughtfulness, the tender care given to me by my Mom and Dad so many, many years ago.


The name belies my memories as it is called ‘MY SIN’.



© Margaret McBride Walker 2014







  1. Margaret,
    I truly enjoyed reading all of your writings. I comment on a few below:
    1. “Heels Way” – As I read this, I thought, you go girl – wear those heels until you can’t wear them any more; and no one else but you should decide when that time comes!
    2. “Why I Smile That Way” – All I can say in: “Awwww” – that very touching.
    3. “There is a Problem Happening This Way” – I totally agree with your commentary. Your “self-test” covered everything that needed to be covered; and it was interesting the difference in how you expected men to respond, and how you (a woman) would respond to those very same questions. Very well written!
    4. “The Procrastinators Way” – It’s all relative, isn’t it? You didn’t understand that word to mean anything but what a good job you were doing staying in the black squares, and not touching the white ones. What a wonderful feeling you got from NOT knowing the true meaning of a word; and even now, you still have good feelings even though you now know the true meaning of the word….a word that I am very familiar with, by the way! Lol.
    5. “Mother’s Day Memories” – for me, the fragrance I have remembered all of my life is the after-shave my Dad used to wear: Old Spice. I bought a bottle of it once, and wore it for a while to keep him close to me. My family and I lost him to a massive stroke in 1986 when he was only 51 years old.

    Keep on writing, Margaret. You do have a wonderful gift!

    Best to you and yours!



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