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What a week! Cooking on a gas camp stove loses its charm after a few days, and we were lucky to have power restored so soon. We are grateful to have had food, water, and LED lanterns that allowed reading when the rain drove us inside. Our road is now closed because of high water on the bridg…

Folks, as you review my recent columns I trust that you will understand these young “pilot-boys” who crashed and died in preparation for war were just as much the hero as though they had been shot down on the battlefield.

Watching a style show on the tube the other day, I noticed many, many hem lengths that are now mid-calf or below. These new long, full skirts are attractive on some of you tall, skinny girls but not on short, dumpy people like me. I am sure I have some but it is stupid for me to do that when…

A recent excerpt from “The Week,” a news digest we subscribe to, about the Dutch East India Company and its three-century oppression in current-day Indonesia paralleled some reading I was doing in “Why Do We Say It?” a book which addresses the several expressions in our language that use “Du…

A friend of mine ordered a silk blouse and with it came some instructions. Now, do not do this at your own risk ... it has worked on a silk blouse of my friend’s, but it may ruin yours.

Last week I shared with you that I had spent some time with my brother, W.H. Williford, in Arlington, Virginia. While there I learned of the death of my friend Max Graham Futrell, one I had known since childhood. It was questionable as to whether I could leave W.H., who suffers with dementia…

On Sept. 21 through 23, Center Stage Theatre will present “Little Women: The Broadway Musical,” with book by Allan Knee, lyrics by Mindi Dickstein, and music by Jason Howland. The play is based on the autobiographical 1868 novel by Louisa May Alcott. The novel relates events in the lives of …

Several weeks ago, I had a phone call from by my sister-in-law, Malinal Williford, asking if I would be willing to come up to Arlington, Va., and spend a few days with her husband, my ailing brother, W.H. (Bill) Williford, Goldsboro High class of 1958. Mal needed a break, and her granddaught…

One of my favorite websites always succeeds in adding to my awareness of the spoken and written word and increases my knowledge and understanding of the way English challenges speakers and writers. I refer to Richard Nordquist’s About.com Grammar and Composition at http://grammar.about.com.

If you are inclined to watch television news, you may have seen recent clips detailing the adventures of a small platoon of firefighters paddling aggressively down the Neuse River. They call their efforts “Paddling for Pennies.”

Does this sound familiar to you? “Economists and Washington officials seem to think that business all over the country in general is close to scraping bottom, and that it will start upward with the fall season.”

I’m beginning today with an apology. This column was actually scheduled for last week, but in my confusion you read about the airplane squabble between the Yanks and Brits instead.

When the brochure arrived in the fall, at first glance it was just another of many travel offerings from the University of North Carolina Alumni Association, a group I joined when my friend Marian Westbrook and I took a trip together. She and I had a river cruise from Amsterdam to Brussels w…

Many of you are former military men. You may have made a living in a cockpit, or grooming sheet metal around a fighter aircraft. You may have been a mechanic performing the last minute inspection before your “baby” roared down the runway and out of sight. You may have been in the control tow…

My husband, Ron, teases me all the time about my need to have a plan. But since we know each other best, he has been very patient and understanding of this quirky trait I have. That wasn’t always the case. Or at least not for having long-range plans.

Thanks to my friend Tom Jackson for his suggestion that I subscribe online to Brain Pickings which offers an exposure to books and authors. A recent issue introduced me to poet, philosopher, essayist, prose writer, and lecturer David Whyte and his 2015 book, “Consolations: The Solace, Nouris…