I just got back from one of those melancholy/happy times with Mom and my brother Ken. When Mom and Dad had their 50th anniversary party in 2010 instead of gifts they asked for donations to go to Heifer International and the Vermont Youth Conservation Corps. Dad had made it known that when he did pass away he did not want people to send flowers but to instead donate some money to the VYCC. We put that in the obituary and several people (including the lovely Vicki Tucker) donated some money. A while ago my mom got a call from them asking where all these donations were coming from. Mom talked with them for a bit and they invited the three of us to stop in at their facility in Richmond for a tour. Today was the day we went to do that.
We arrived and were greeted by a lovely woman named Naomi. As she walked from her desk to greet us, I saw something unusual and specific behind her work space and had to ask. “Is that a Phil Yates & The Affiliates LP?” She said yes and said she sings in a band with their drummer Jacob Blodgett. I let her know I loved the band and do a local music radio show on WBKM.org. I think she is going to send me an album. Yea, more local music to play.
We toured the barn and she told us about the program which is for kids in their late teens to early 20’s and they get sent out all over the state to work on projects and learn about sustainable living off the land, learning to work with groups of people, learning leadership skills and things like that. It really sounds like they are doing some great work. If you know a kid in that age range who needs some direction, check out the organization.
At the end of the tour I mentioned that I work at Gardener’s Supply Company and she said Jim Feinson (GSC’s CEO) is a member of their board. It’s such a small, and wonderful, world sometimes.
So, I’m thinking about Dad today. I’m feeling a little sad, but happy to know that something that meant a lot to him, kids getting a chance to learn and better themselves, is thriving and available. I know he would be pleased.
On the way out, Mom mentioned that we were going to stop and get something to eat. Naomi recommended the Parkside Kitchen. We took her up on that, and the food was just great. Great call!!
That’s my day so far.