By Vicki Scott
This Fourth of July marked eight years of us calling the area of Glencoe home. We moved here with the intention of moving back in about a year. Our plans were off by a few years, so I guess God had other plans.
It takes us a while to see everything. My husband Alan and I are still touring the sights. We saw the fireworks at the Gadsden Riverwalk for the first time this year. We usually go back to Dadeville and watch them at Kowaliga with our children. Our little darlings seemed to have other plans, so we made do. I have learned so much in my time up here, and the Gadsden area is the home of many firsts for me.
First Friday in downtown Gadsden was new to us. We enjoy it so much when family or friends visit, and we try to get them to come for First Friday. My husband loves the old cars and motorcycles. Some of our seniors and volunteers at the George Wallace Senior Center are set up in the middle of the street, and we look for them as well. The music and the line dancing are among my favorite things to watch. We bring our chairs to sit and watch, only to leave them in the car. Being too lazy to go back and get the chairs, we tend to sit on a nearby curb and then spend an hour and a half trying to get up when the show is over.
There have been times I almost line danced with the group dancing. The dancers would not have minded, but my husband was with me. Alan was not with me when this group danced at the holiday dinner given for our area seniors. I did dance with them at that event. That is how I know that those dancers would not have minded. They needed a good laugh, anyway. I had fun, and since that first time we have striven to go to every First Friday.
McClendon Auction was our first experience with real auctioning. I have been to auction fundraisers, but nothing like McClendon. It took us a few times, but we soon were addicted. It saddens me that the auctions have stopped for now, but I understand why. It was where we ended up almost every Thursday and Saturday night. He sells things but does not auction them off. It was very entertaining, and I miss it.
My first real writing experience started right here in these pages. I had written before, but the doors of opportunity opened in this area for me in writing for The Messenger and writing my first book. It is still hard to believe any parts of the writing experiences I have encountered in this area. I remain in awe and praise God for this amazing experience and the people God used to make all this happen.
Our seniors at George Wallace Senior Center were the instruments to many of my firsts. My husband and I were discussing a few days ago about how many of the gospel songs I learned were from singing at the center on Fridays. Before I was called to be a Christian, I knew very few Christian songs. The only songs I remembered were “Will the Circle be Unbroken” and “Give Me That Old Time Religion” as a child. My cousins and aunt sang them one time during a car ride. When we started singing at the center, I knew a few more songs from the Baptist hymnal that I learned at First Baptist Reeltown in Notasulga.
Things are vastly different for me now. I know many more “old school” songs from several books, and our seniors do not seem to mind me singing them as loud as I can. I cannot believe I had never heard “The Gospel Ship.” Praise and worship songs like these combined with our seniors just does something to my soul!
Line dancing was a new endeavor for me until we started dancing on Tuesdays and Thursdays. We at the senior center banded together and have learned approximately 15 dances so far. The line dancing and the gospel singing, along with all the other activities, have been put on hold until the coronavirus quarantine is lifted. I pray that we can start back soon. It has been too long, and I have learned so much!
Our time has been considerably longer than we planned, but none of it was wasted. It has been such a blessing to be in this area and to build lifelong relationships with people. We are not done, and I know God has amazing plans for all involved. I have noticed opportunities for another first, but God had led me this far. If it is His will, I might have another first to share.
Thanks to everyone for making the last eight years more than I could have ever imagined! Stay safe!