RESPONDING TO HURRICANE HARVEY
Hurricane Harvey affected 13,000,000 people from Texas through Louisiana, Mississippi, Tennessee and Kentucky. It damaged 203,000 homes, of which 12,700 were completely destroyed. More than eighty lives were lost. In its wake, 507,000 families and businesses had registered for financial recovery assistance with the Federal Emergency Management Agency. One of those was Gulf Coast Four Square Church in the small, Galveston-area, coastal burg of Hitchcock, Texas.
The SOWER office made an appeal to all available SOWERs for help. They published a list of locations which needed assistance and Gulf Coast Four Square Church was on the list. It meant that Deb and I would need to cut our time short in Colorado, but we were called to go; it was the right thing to do. We can come back to Colorado any time.
We carved out time to help Mallory and Devin finish painting the trim on their house (they left all the high parts for me -- thank you very much!). We were glad to help out, and even had time to make and install some new shutters for the front of their home. It was enjoyable to spend time with them ... and to be around Ellie!
Speaking of Ellie, Mallory invited Deb and me up to Tiny Town in the foothills west of Denver. The last time that we were there was when Mallory was about 9 years old. Now she was here with her daughter, Ellie.
As the name implies, everything in the "town" is small -- about 1/8th scale. It was fun to reminisce with Mallory as her memories of the miniature buildings was much more grand than present reality would suggest. It's funny how things look so different through the eyes of a child!
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In the "town," Ellie wanted to lead, so off she walked, zig-zagging here-and-there, taking time at the more colorful buildings. We noticed that she liked looking in the decorated windows. Most of the rooms were furnished, but they were too low to the ground for us "oldsters" to be able to stoop down and see what Ellie saw.
There are several buildings that Ellie could crawl into -- by her smiles, she seemed to like exploring these the most.
She also enjoyed the playground, an ice cream cone, and TWO rides on the coal-burning steam train. The wee-size Tiny Town Railroad makes a nine-minute loop around Tiny Town. The steam engine follows a route that shows off a lot of animals and buildings that you cannot see from the walking paths. On each trip, Ellie had to sit on a different side of the train. I think she liked the trestles and the whistle toots the best. Just like me.