Mom Saint Patrick's Day 1919

Mom Saint Patrick’s Day 1919

I am particularly fond of the color of the Witch Hazel in the header above.  To be perfectly honest, I don’t own many orange clothes,  but you will find the color in my garden.  So, when I say I like colors, I mean in the garden, or works of art.  Van Gogh used yellows and oranges in his paintings, as well as blues which I do wear.  Is there anyone who doesn’t love Van Gogh?

Now I don’t want to offend anyone, but on Saint Patrick’s Day when many others wore green, my grandmother always tied a big orange ribbon in my Mom’s hair.  My Mom’s family, descended from the Dutch who followed the Prince of Orange from Holland to England in the seventeenth century were the children of recent immigrants from the Netherlands. Orange is the Dutch color.  William, Prince of Orange, later, William of William and Mary fame was associated with the disposition of the Catholic Charles II in England.  Many Protestants saw William as their champion.

I don’t know much Irish history, but I think the Catholic Irish hated William.  My ancestors were pretty far down on the totem pole, so I don’t know why grandma had a bee in her bonnet about the Irish, but Mom ran off and married a Catholic, albeit, not an Irish Catholic, which would have been worse, but her marriage caused some friction in her family.


Tax season always gives us a dose of hard reality. We got the medical part assembled, and I can hardly believe it.  We spent about $20,000 on medical last year.  We each have Medicare and our own insurance plan, but this is amazing.  About half of these expenses are for prescription drugs.  The rest is a mix of insurance payments and other expenses.  So when you read that the largest expense seniors have is medical, believe it.  And David and I are fairly healthy for our ages. God help those who are not.


I’m about three-quarters of the way through Max Hastings Inferno, another book about WWII.  I have enjoyed this book which covers The War in Asia, Russia, North Africa and the Middle East, and Italy. Basically, the Russians defeated Hitler by throwing bodies at the Nazis, and the Americans defeated Tojo’s forces because American Industry built better ships, and the Marines were the best fighting force on earth, according to Hastings.

Richard Ovary (Why the Allies Won), says The War was over in 1942, but the Japanese kept fighting.  Their apparent goal was to kill as many of the Allied as they could before they finally surrendered. Understanding this situation explains why Truman felt he had no choice but to use the Atomic bomb.

Factoid 1: The Nazis had an outfit called the ‘Moslem Waffen SS’ composed of migrants from the Middle East?  Seems some from the Middle East have hated Jews for a very long time.

Factoid 2: The Japanese had the Indian National Army composed of Indian nationalists ‘deserters’ who fought the British.

WWII was very complex and led to the loss of many lives. Many people didn’t know why they were fighting, and many were fighting to settle old scores often with neighbors or others. Inter-ethnic rivalry is a fearsome thing.

22 thoughts on “Enemies?

  1. I do agree about the comfort women. It’s aggravating that reparations aren’t being made quickly.

    I’m not an orange fan and I didn’t know that was witch hazel. But it’s a very dramatic header. Now I’ll have to keep my eyes open for it.


  2. Waxing vee-hickles isn’t just for those who live near the ocean. Cars are now clear coated, and to keep that clear coat from peeling off and letting your vehickle look scabourous, it needs a coat of wax. Most trucks of grumpy’s age are peeling verociously, but not Grumpy.


  3. Your mom is darling. 🙂
    For years the Dutch had the best trade routs and the best ships.. The English competed well tho. With this married name, one would think I was Irish. I did wear green today but G forgot.


  4. That’s quite an array of items in one blog entry … yes, I too love the color in your heading and I like that you change the templates. Mine is very dull in contrast.


  5. Wow! $20K for medical!!! I am astounded as that means your insurances picked up at least that much, too. You must have some expensive prescriptions.

    Terry is now on medicare and paying over $100 a month for that coverage. Before, I was, and still am, paying $100 to my former employer’s insurance for the two of us. The coverage is pretty good, too, but the deductible for the school district’s coverage has gone very high so as to keep that low premium.

    Still, I don’t think we paid over $400 out of pocket beyond the insurance. I had that serious heel problem in July and Terry had physical therapy in December for his back. Otherwise, we’re doing good here.


    • My insurance (BC/BS) picked up most of the tab for my drugs. Yes, a couple of my prescriptions are very pricey, (the co-pay runs over $100 per month).

      Some of David’s meds are also costly. (David has United Health Care via his old company (AT&T)) which pays most his insurance bill. I elected out of his plan and have my own insurance for which I pay premiums each month.

      The $10,000 for prescription dugs is the sum of our our co-pay. Also included in the 20k is our insurance tab, my dental work, eyeglasses, and medical equipment Medicare does not cover.


      • Ah, eye glasses. We no longer have optical insurance so hve not had eye exams in over 5 years. Guess I will use the small tax refund we got to send Terry to the optometrist. He needs a new prescription. Mine are still usable.


  6. Lots of ‘Orangemen’ in my father’s family (Northern Ireland) and yes, religion has been the cause of many a war over the years.
    The photo on my ‘brothers’ post is of my two youngest sons many years ago – maybe I should go back and make it more clear as you weren’t the only one to think it was me lol


  7. I really enjoyed the big orange ribbon and the story behind it – I didn’t know the Dutch saw orange as their color.

    I am glad WWII is over – my mother (who grew up in NYC) had family that used to stay in touch, but then they (in Lithuania) were all killed. May a war like that never happen again.


  8. Reply to Gigi: What happened to the women was absolutely horrible, and I agree. Just as Germany has been making reparations to others for the actions of the Nazis, so should Japan.

    Yes, Ovary says the Battle of Midway in 1942 ended any hope Tojo had of dominating the Pacific. The sad fact is that many people died because Japan did not accept defeat until after the Atomic Bombs were dropped.

    BTW the nuclear bombs of today are many times more destructive than the Atomic bombs of the 1940s.


  9. Gee, I didn’t know that about the color orange and its historical significance.
    So, WWII should have ended in 1942, but didn’t due to the Japanese? We Koreans don’t like what the Japanese did to our people. Reparations to the comfort women need to be made.


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