I write this on Monday the 14th -- Columbus Day. Memories. It was a great time in grade school. Things to color, replicas of his boats, the Nina, the Pinta and the Santa Maria we crafted out of paper.
Columbus Day of my youth was a great celebration. I wonder how it is in the grade schools of today? At least the Post Office has the good sense to holiday in celebration.
Not so much for the New Left in today’s politics. The gumpies have pushed for a new name “Indigenous People’s Day”. Their concern is that America was already populated with American Indians—oops that is the name given by Columbus himself. True enough but the European explorers that came to roam the huge heretofore unknown continents, North and South, didn’t exactly restrain themselves or cover themselves with glory in their interactions with the natives. It was the Europeans, specifically the English that came and settled to establish the Christian country that we know today. The greatest and best country the world has ever known. We are so lucky to live here.
Our country is the best in the world today but still there are warts and bruises. Big government sometimes comes up with a lack of good common sense. As you might know Grannie Annie best friend suffered a massive stroke. She received wonderful care from the staff at McCook Community Hospital for which we are thankful. In time it became necessary to move her to Hillcrest Nursing Home. The personnel who administered to her there also could not have been more caring. Angels. Still the lady unconsciously thrashing about in her bed fell out onto the floor. Nothing broken thankfully but Grannie requested that bed rails be installed. “Oh no, we can’t do that. It would be a form of restraint!” was the reply. Yep some bureaucrat up the line in the Medicare world decreed that bed rails are restraints and cannot be allowed. Obviously in their world of thinking is much better for a patient to fall out of bed than to use a sensible bed rail to keep them from hurting themselves. I wonder if that all knowing bureaucrat had sides on their babies crib or playpen?
Speaking of Hillcrest it in my opinion a real jewel in our community. Residing there at the moment are a retired medical doctor, one of our largest and best former automobile dealers, the widow of one of our community’s bankers, one of my grade school teachers, a 102 year old friend of my wife, a former heating and air-conditioning entrepreneur, a dear friend (younger than your columnist) all of which I consider friends. They take care of persons who can no longer care for themselves and they do it in a caring, loving humane manner. In this era when many nursing homes in Nebraska are being forced to close it is essential that this vital part of our community and surrounding area continue to operate. County owned and at the moment self-supporting if push comes to shove I can make the case that if a bit of taxpayer money is necessary for its survival it will be tax dollars well spent.
My world of aviation suffers also from lack of common sense at times. It wasn’t long ago that Congress, following a fatal crash of an airliner, decreed that airline pilots must have flown and logged at least 1500 hours and achieved an Airline Transport Rating, ATP, before they could occupy the right seat, First Officer or copilot. The congressional members voting in affirmative probably had no pilot experience and hence no clue as to how expensive it is to attain that ATP rating in today’s general aviation world. The result, I am sure unintended, produced an instant pilot shortage and we still haven’t worked through that difficulty.
I’m a little partial and speak from experience but the military has a better way for seasoning young inexperienced pilots before moving them into the world of command. Young military pilots come out of pilot training with approximately 200 hours of flying time. They then go to school on the large transport, tanker or bomber aircraft that they are assigned to fly before being assigned to the right seat as copilots. Flying with experienced aircraft commanders the young copilots then learn and are seasoned in the real world until they have accumulated enough hours and experience to move into the left seat, the position of command. It works but related to the Airlines problem all too many seasoned pilots leave the military early to go fly for the airlines as they have already met the required flying hours of experience. Oh the world of unintended consequences.
A bit of confusion. Camp Comeca isn’t exactly for sale at this point in time. Representatives from Great Plains Camps a division of the United Methodist Kansas-Nebraska Conference carried the message to our Camp Comeca Site Council that the camp was to close on December 31, 2019. They also quoted an ungodly price that we the Council could buy the property if we wanted to continue its operation. The vote of the local Council was to continue the operation of the Camp but that we felt the price should be open for negotiation. We are forming a business plan to continue the operation of a Christian based Camp Comeca successfully into the future to be unaffiliated with any organized church body. At the moment the wheels of progress are turning slowly.
That is the way I saw it.