Monday, November 20, 2023

Microstory 2021: Tennessee

Papa was only an active member of the Navy for four years. He thought about staying in, but ended up not. It’s all because of something he did as his required time was ending. He was still in the reserves after this, but he wasn’t working on the sub anymore. While he was trying to make a decision, friends of his from college called him up, and asked him if he wanted to work with them on a mission trip in Tennessee. They were Mormons, and they were doing it for their church, but that wasn’t going to be what the trip was about. There was an old folks home in a small town outside of Memphis. He was in Arkansas at the time, so he wasn’t very far away. That’s probably why they called him. He took a bus to the home, and got to work. The people who owned it didn’t have very much money, and they were having trouble keeping their residents comfortable. Don’t worry, they all always had their medicine and stuff, but there were other issues. They couldn’t afford plants, or nice paintings for the walls. The biggest issue was the courtyard, which is a space that is outside, but it has walls around it. Residents can go and sit down and enjoy being outside, but it wasn’t very pretty at this place. I don’t think my papa spent much time on that, though. He basically became a volunteer handyman. While the others were planting trees, he fixed things around the building, because he was an engineer. What he said was that this was an eye-opening experience. He wanted to spend more time doing things like that. Of course he was helping people when he was serving this country, but he decided that there were things that he should do outside of it. That’s what led him to leaving the Navy, as an active officer at least.

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