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Lining up for food

November 19, 2008 - Jim Bartholow
One look at Front and Second streets around the county fairgrounds at midday Tuesday tells me all I need to know about the state of our economy. The Celebration Center on Front Street was conducting a drive-through, free food giveaway at the fairgrounds. All you had to be was a resident of Ohio. Organizers said they gave away food (potatoes, apples, cereal, etc.) to 1,000 people. That those people probably were in line for an hour or so shows to me that lots of our neighbors are in need. Leslie and I were in line for about 20 minutes, helping a relative new to the area find her way to the fairgrounds. Once we got to Second Street, after sitting in line 20 minutes to cover half a block of Montgomery Street we pulled out and went home. Our relative stayed in line, but the food ran out before she could get to the fairgrounds. Just imagine, more than a thousand people probably burned a gallon or two of gas so they could get some food for free! I'm glad they got some help. And if your were trying to navigate through the traffic jammed area during the giveaway, maybe now you'll understand why. I'm sure some drivers were upset about getting stuck in traffic, but it was an emergency, of sorts. And I tip my hat to The Celebration Center for its efforts. Watch the newspaper's calendar for information on other free meal events, especially around Thanksgiving next week.

It's winter already? Wednesday's low of 16 degrees was just waaaay too cold. Then the computer gives us the wind chill too, saying with the gentle breeze, it feels like 13 degrees. But with temperatures that low all that matters is that its COLD and it's only November. I hope we're not in for a winter of '78 repeat. There was lots of snow. Roads were snow covered from December to March, it seemed. Crews ran out of places to put the snow. The snow in parking spaces around town turned to thick ice that wouldn't let your car get back into the traffic lanes without a push from a good Samaritan. The fuel line on our car froze in the middle of it all. It didn't defrost for a month. I remember our good friend, Pat, let us use her car to run essential errands. And I remember being cold all the time at our apartment at 329 Third St. The furnace worked fine; it's just that the heat vents were in the ceiling. Since heat travels up anyway we didn't get any heat above our waists. Putting plastic on the windows helped (a ritual I continued until last year when we got snazzy, new replacement windows installed at our home for the past 19 years by Marietta Memorial Hospital. How many days until Opening Day? Thinking spring warms me a little.


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Cars line up for Tuesday's food giveaway at the county fairgrounds.