Thursday, November 22, 2012

Less Cranky, More Thankful

I think my state of jumpy irritation on Sunday was more a function of the cold I was fighting than anything else. That and the fact that I don't do large functions with the eleven o'clockers very well ever.

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving and I know the biggest thing I am grateful for is freedom, simple freedom from the inhibiting mountain of rules when I was at that fundigelical church. I realized this year I can do, say, dress, cook, be whatever I want. There are not as many hard and fast rules as I thought that there were.

Today I cooked for tomorrow's feast at my eldest daughter Margaret's house. I always bring Ham, Cajun Coca Cola salad, Cranberry Amaretto Pound Cake and Fruit Cake for Turkey Day. Her in laws bring pies, drinks and Sweet Potato Casserole. Laura my little daughter is bringing something made out of green beans, her boyfriend is bringing homemade rolls and my son Andy is making something, I just don't know what. But I do know between all of us there will be a big meal laid on and we'll have a good day together. For that I am thankful as well.

See my Fruit Cake? One day soon I'll post Gluten Free versions of the recipes I used today.

I always feel a bit funny posting recipes and the photos because I don't have a million dollar kitchen like most food bloggers. I have my tiny kitchen and old appliances but it works for me. Ah, the house smelled like brandy most of the day while I soaked the fruits for the fruitcake in brandy.

But during my day of cooking I did run into sort of a snafu. I got a letter from the local courts telling me I have jury duty again. In the twenty plus years I've lived here I have had county jury duty 5 times, federal jury duty once and state jury duty twice. Jim has been called exactly once in all those years.

I filled out the paperwork and sent it back in. This should be interesting because I had to tell them I'll be gone two weeks at Christmas and will need to be off every other Monday for my Xolair injections. I hope they do not call me. But then again I do in some ways.

Happens that my jury duty time falls right in the same time frame that Daniel Harmon-Wright will be tried in our town for the murder of my fellow worship team member Pat Cook. I know I'll have to divulge that I knew Patricia quite well if I am called up for the trial to sit on the jury but I have to say this is one of those times when I sort of wish I was comfortable with lying. I would love to see justice serviced for what happened to Pat.

What happened to Pat? She was sitting in her Jeep at the parking lot of the local Catholic school. The school called the police to run her off because she'd been walking around and refused to leave when asked. I could see Pat doing that. She loved children and she suffered from some sort of mental issues or depression so I can see the school being freaked out by her behavior.

The officer arrived, walked to her Jeep, there were words exchanged, loud words, Pat refused to hand him her ID and drove away.

One of the big claims by Harmon-Wright is that Pat rolled up her window and trapped his arm, dragging him down the road. Witnesses have refuted that story plus her Jeep had a manual roll up window, it was very unlikely she trapped his arm. What witnesses did see was Harmon-Wright's hand on the door knob and his other hand holding the pistol. He shot her twice in the head at close range as she tried to drive away. She drove down the road and Harmon-Wright walked into the road, shooting at her fleeing vehicle, hitting her five more times. She died and the Jeep rolled to a stop against the light pole.

Was Pat a threat? Not likely, Harmon-Wright is a big old guy and Pat weight probably a hundred pounds soaking wet. Those of us that knew Pat well knew she had struggles but also knew that for all her eccentricities (and she was highly eccentric) could not imagine any scenario in which anyone could ever think that Pat was a threat to their lives.

What do I think happened? Pat was acting oddly and a corrupt trigger-happy cop murdered her. End of story.

It took a long time and a very thorough investigation by the State Police before Harmon-Wright was charged and he'll go on trial this November.

I'm thankful also for accountability and justice. Justice needs to be done for Patricia Cook. Her husband recently died and her mother is quite elderly and ill.

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