My Mother’s Birthday (Dedication: to all mothers)

first_imgI stood at the flower shop on Benson Street with a smile on my face. “I need a nice bunch of flowers for my mother and beside the fact that she loves flowers today is her birthday.”  “You lucky man,” the flower seller, a woman in her thirties, said also with a smile. “This bunch of flowers your mother will love.”   I said, “You started this business not too long ago?”    “Yes,” she said, “about two years ago.”   “How well is going for you?”   “Pretty much,” she replied, “I did not realize that people here love flowers.”   “How easy is it to be in such a business?”   She kept the smile in place and swept her head back, rolled her eyes, turned to look at me and said, “As I said I’ve been in this business for the last two years and my patrons have been people who have class, and love and remember how important their parents are in their lives.”  “You get customers from all over the country?”  “Not all over,” she said, sitting down behind the counter, “there are people here who love flowers and want them at various occasions.”  “Quite right,” I said. “I need flowers during an occasion like this when it is that of my mother’s birthday.”   She smiled.   I could not hide my appreciation for the woman’s remarkable interest in her flowers. Besides, I knew she wanted me to buy her product anyhow.  “My family loves flowers,” I told her, “and my mother’s birthday is today. Can you send the flowers to my mother’s residence?”  “Yes,” she said, and her sweet smile raced across my face.  “I want you to send the flowers to my mother.” “Where does your mother live?” “Tubmanburg,” I said, “the address is easy to find.”  Still keeping her smile in place, she said, “I know Tubmanburg, a small town. I have a business contact in there and we can deliver your purchase to her.”  “It’s about eight fifteen,” I glanced at my wristwatch.   She said, “Yes, the flowers can be delivered at 2p.m today. She will be contacted on her cell-phone once the flowers are in Tubmanburg.”   “That’s wonderful,” I said.   While the discussion went on, I noticed a young boy with a blue shirt and in black trousers standing further away from me, watching me. I became curious when I saw that he had tears in his eyes. I could not figure out what was happening to him and was inclined to find out.   So when I concluded the arrangement for the flowers to be sent to my mother, I walked to the boy and inquired from him the reason for the tears.  “Today is my mother’s birthday,” he said, “and the woman,” he pointed his right hand to the woman in the Flower Shop, “said the flowers cost L$1,000.00. And I’m just seven.   “She would not accept my twenty dollars.” I looked directly in his face, with personal sympathy and told him, “Ok, friend, no need to shed tears I can help you with this.”    I took him to the flower shop.  “Give this boy the flowers he needs for his mother,” I told the woman, “and I’m going to pay for it.”   She said, “Yeah, he’s been here the last couple of minutes but I told him the money he has could not purchase any bunch of flowers.  “But since you said so, ok I will let him have what he wants.”  The boy looked at me with a grin, and lowered his heard, lifting his right hand to wipe away tears that had formed there.  Few minutes later, the woman handed the little boy a bunch of neatly organized flowers. As soon as the boy received them, he began to run to the opposite direction without even saying a word to me. I regarded him with some further curiosity and smiled, remembering when I was at his age.   Several seconds later, I felt someone tucking at my clothes, and when I turned around, it was the same boy.  “’Thank you, mister,” he said, with a smile, “thanks for the flowers.” I nodded in anticipation, saying, “No problem, son, have a nice day.”  He smiled and ran off. I could not understand the little boy’s interest in flower and that the day was her mother’s birthday got me thinking about my mother. I could also not get it clear about the boy’s love for flowers for his mother. To my knowledge, it was not common for kids to show an exceptional interest in their parent’s birthdays. It was a thought I could not get out of my mind. But in these days of Ebola virus disease that had resulted into many deaths, I could agree that even a child could show gratitude towards his mother. Times were changing, I thought. Meanwhile, I felt a sense of admiration for the little boy and I wished I had known him a little better to know the kind of mother he had. In any case, he was gone and that was it.  The Monrovia weather was getting hotter, now that we were in the dry season. In the wake of the declining Ebola infections people’s confidence was creeping back to their lives. The sun was early and hitting gradually hard and many people were surprised at its early appearance.  Thirty minutes later, I made my way towards Slipway, just across from the Gabriel Tucker Bridge. The hot weather was losing its power due to the Mesurado River’s proximity to my location. The river flowed silently into the Atlantic Ocean. The sudden change of weather gave me some courage that nature had its own way of bringing reassurance that all was not lost. I began to think about nature’s provision for our existence and wondered how wonderful things, particularly happen to bring changes in the environment for our own good.   I was in such deep thought when I was suddenly attracted to the location where a small figure sat before an old cemetery that I thought had been abandoned many years ago.  What also got me interested was the blue shirt, for it was clear that it was the little boy I had encountered nearly thirty minutes ago. The boy knelt before what seemed me to be a recently constructed grave in an old cemetery. The boy sat beside a fresh bunch of flowers inserted in front that particular grave.  “What’s he doing there?” I said to myself. My curiosity got the better me and therefore I chose to find out what he was doing alone beside the grave. I descended the steps leading to the cemetery and strolled towards him. Closer, scattered graves came in view and I realized that the most recent graves could be any of the people who might died but not really from the Ebola virus disease; meaning from other natural causes and were interred there. But for a seven-year-old boy to be here alone was a mystery that pricked my attention, particularly so since I had encountered him sometime earlier.  The echoes of my footsteps drew the boy’s attention. He turned around slowly, and realizing who it was, said, “This is where mother lives,” as he pointed to the grave he sat behind, “and she is very grateful for the wonderful flowers.”  Suddenly, a lump jumped in my throat, as I was overwhelmed with emotion. I could not get over the demonstration of gratitude and love that this little boy had shown by example to celebrate his dead mother’s birthday.  Without saying a word, I began to walk away from him, and my destination was of course to the flower shop. I arrived at the shop few minutes later and met with the beautiful lady who had assisted me earlier. “Have you sent the flowers?” “Not yet,” she said, “they are about to leave the office.”  “I will take them with me,” I said, “so that I can personally deliver them to my mother.”   She wanted to know why the sudden change of mind, but I was not prepared to go into it. I felt some guilt about it somehow, especially when I compared it with the little boy’s life lesson that I had just received. The little man taught me a great deal about a child’s love for his mother even if she was no more alive. Some questions began to come to my mind: how many of those whose parents are living really appreciate them? There are some friends that I know who care little about their parents, and I realized that the little boy’s instructive lesson would leave a large mark on my person and I would not be the same again, that was for sure.  I then had some fill of excitement that I never experienced before in my life. I held the bouquet flowers neatly wrapped and held it close to me. I began to think about the days gone by when all my attention was to my mother as hers had been on me when I was a little boy. I knew I could not keep this story away from her, because by the afternoon, I would be with my mother as she would celebrate her birthday.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Winter won’t go away in the Peace Region

first_imgAlmost 6cm of snow fell in Fort St. John on Sunday. 5.7 cm of snow fell, beating the record set in 1970 of 5.3 cm.  We also set a new low record temperature Sunday, at -3.3 degrees celsius.  The old record from 1989 was -1.2 degrees celsius. On Monday there is still a chance of more flurries, but Environment Canada isn’t calling for any large accumulation.  – Advertisement -Although other parts of the Peace are not as lucky, as there are a number of winter storm watches in effect for other regions of the Peace. In Dawson Creek and Chetwynd, Environment Canada says those regions could see up to 10 cm of snow tonight through Tuesday.  In the Grande Prairie, Beaverlodge areas they could see upwards of 20 cm of snow by Tuesday. There are no current warnings or watches in effect for the Fort St. John or North Peace regions. Advertisement For current BC Road Conditions Click Here.  For current Alberta Road Conditions Click Here.last_img read more

Roy Keane player spat not to blame for Republic of Ireland sack, says striker

first_img MONEY BEST OF no dice Berahino hits back at b******t Johnson criticism – ‘I was in a dark place at Stoke’ Latest Football News Roy Keane’s apparently strained relationship with Republic of Ireland players played no part in his and Martin O’Neill’s sacking in charge of the national team.That’s according to Ireland striker Jon Walters, who refused to lay any blame on the Manchester United legend, despite an alleged clash between the pair over the summer.Manager O’Neill and his assistant Keane left their roles with the Football Association of Ireland (FAI) on Wednesday after the team finished bottom of their UEFA Nations League group.While results on the pitch have not been good enough– they have just one win in 11 games – there are also claims that a lack of squad harmony and O’Neill’s continued support of No.2 Keane was one of the reasons behind their departure. There were calls for Keane to be sacked over the incident, but O’Neill stood by his assistant and Arter has since revealed he has patched things up with the former Manchester United midfielder.And, speaking to talkSPORT on Thursday, Ireland striker Walters said the aforementioned events were not to blame for the management team’s departure.“I’ve played under him [Keane] a couple of times and I don’t want to get into a mud-slinging argument here or anything like that,” Walters told the Alan Brazil Sports Breakfast. “I think we still would have qualified under Martin.“But it’s been a difficult 12 months and the people in charge have decided to change it.”Listen back to Jon Walters on the Alan Brazil Sports Breakfast IN FULL above! Every time Ally McCoist lost it on air in 2019, including funny XI reactions REVEALED 3 RANKED “Obviously things happened over the summer which were well publicised, I wasn’t part of what happened with the leaked WhatsApp or whatever happened.“Things do happen, but I don’t think it’s the right time to push that and say that’s the reason.“At the end of the day, we’re the players that go out on the pitch and we haven’t got the results over the last 12 months and ultimately when that happens the pressure always goes to the manager.“As a player you’re not held accountable so much, it always goes to the manager, the manager  always gets under pressure when the results don’t come their way.” Walters has refused to lay blame on Roy Keane’s poor relationship with players for the reason behind his departure Walters believes Ireland would have qualified for Euro 2020 under Martin O’Neill Son ban confirmed as Tottenham fail with appeal to overturn red card Ronaldo warned Lukaku how hard scoring goals in Serie A would be before Inter move Where Ancelotti ranks with every Premier League boss for trophies won Which teams do the best on Boxing Day in the Premier League era? 3 REVEALED REPLY Martin O’Neill and Roy Keane have left their roles with Ireland shining Top nine Premier League free transfers of the decade Forbes list reveals how much Mayweather, Ronaldo and Messi earned this decade Premier League Team of the Season so far, including Liverpool and Leicester stars Oxlade-Chamberlain suffers another setback as Klopp confirms serious injury huge blow “The major thing that gets people the sack is results.”🗣️ Tony Cascarino told talkSPORT that it was Martin O’Neill’s loyalty to Roy Keane that saw him leave the Republic of Ireland job.But Ally McCoist disagrees.Who do you think should replace O’Neill? 🤔 pic.twitter.com/76W1KZhpHS— talkSPORT (@talkSPORT) November 22, 2018Walters – currently out of the Ireland team due to an Achilles injury – did suggest that sacking O’Neill was perhaps the wrong decision from the FAI.He feels they would have sealed qualification to Euro 2020 under the experienced boss, despite their lack of recent form.The Burnley man added: “The results haven’t been great over the last 12 months, but to balance that there has been a big change in the squad. 3 ADVICE Keane found himself in the centre of another storm over the summer when he was accused of verbally attacking Ireland duo Walters and Harry Arter after they sat out of training due to medical advice.According to a subsequently leaked series of WhatsApp messages by defender Stephen Ward, Keane is said to have called the Bournemouth midfielder a ‘p****’ and a ‘c***’, and also apparently squared up with Walters during a training session.last_img read more