day after dinner, Thomas Gainsborough tried something new.
for fun, and because he was having trouble getting clouds right,
attached a small rag to the end of a stick.
several dishes, he mixed up a very light set of multi-colored
his stick from one dish to the next, he swept the rag over the
he walked each wet sheet across the room to dry it by the fire.
to get back to wetting more, he called in the maid to take
were the clouds that had evaded him, emerging as if from no
noticed that the darker colors created valleys and mountains just
the simple addition of a few people, animals and trees,
suddenly created a new landscape, a house set into the hillside,
was magical, like discovering Alice in Wonderland inside a simple
pull into a station whether it was day or night.
Children’s Aide Society lined us up on the platform.
of people came to see us. Free children. No questions
stood holding my brother’s hand so they’d know we
wanted to stay together.
who were selected went off with their new parents -- then and
rest of us got back on the train bound for a new station and a
died of tuberculosis in 1925 in Elmira.
Floyd was still suffering from war injuries.
couldn’t hold a job and had to give us up.
Society arrived in a big car and offered us candy.
was the last we saw of our parents, home, or friends.
a time we lived in an orphanage in New York City.
in December 1927, we were put on The Orphan Train.
days we lined up on platforms from Philadelphia to
and I always dressed in our best clothes.
hold hands quietly and wait. There was nothing else to
hardest part was getting back on the train,
some children had found a home in this place we hardly knew.
one blizzardy night, the train rolled into Wellington, Texas.
Society took over the lobby of a local hotel to get everyone
and I got so used to rejection that we hardly looked at the
rancher came up to us and asked if we’d like to live on a
be hard work,
he said, but
you’ll be outdoors most the time.
looked at each other and shook our heads. Yes.
1507, a German cartographer
in rural Saint-Die, France
for no particularly good reason
he would name the continent
the other side of the Atlantic
it is the Latin form of the
name of Amerigo Vespucci,
man who first suggested that a
might be in that location.
was named with more sense than that!