Gorman’s Sentimental Journey
Our MS trip has a subtitle: “So Many Friends; Too Little Time”. We had so much fun and saw so many good friends but there just wasn’t time to fit in visits with everyone we had hoped to see. So we decided we’ll have to make another trip to MS.
The Neel-Schaffer Inc. 30th anniversary celebration was indeed a celebration. What began 30 years ago with both the Neels and the Schaffers getting second mortgages on their homes and taking a giant leap of faith has now turned into an engineering company with over 400 employees and offices throughout the southeast. I am so proud of them! There was a dinner one night for the handful of original employees who are still with the company and then a reception the next night at the Old Capital Inn for clients, employees and friends. Jackson’s Mayor Harvey Johnson made some very kind remarks as did the representative from MS Economic Development Authority.
In addition to several nights in Jackson, we spent three nights in Vicksburg, which I figured would get pretty boring but surprisingly, it wasn’t. We stayed at Anchuca Mansion, a lovely old home turned into a B & B. It’s in downtown Vicksburg, a great area for walking and looking at pretty old houses; also within walking distance to the Old Courthouse Museum, a charming old-fashioned museum. Needless to say, Gorman spent some time there working on genealogy and also gave them a copy of his research on his Schaffer ancestors. Sunday morning we worshiped at Christ Episcopal Church, built in 1839, where daily services were held through the 47 days that Vicksburg was under siege during the Civil War.
Okay, I’m trying not to turn this blog into a travelogue but Anchuca has a pretty restaurant with very good food. We also had a delicious meal at Roca, housed in what used to be the Vicksburg Country Club so we were pleasantly surprised that there were some upscale choices available without resorting to dining at the gambling casinos.
We drove up to Oxford, driving the old route through Yazoo City and Greenwood, the way Gorman used to drive from Vicksburg to Ole Miss when he was in college, a long time ago. We only spent one night in Oxford and decided that was a mistake but we’ll correct that next time. I will just add that we had a great dinner with friends at SnackBar, owned by John Currence, of City Grocery fame.
We had a wonderful trip but, as always, we are happy to be back home and back in Fairhope with our little dog, Toosie Mae.
We continue to thank God that Gorman felt good throughout the trip. We did have one little blip. The clinical trial drug, XL765, is in pill form and he takes it every night. It has to be refrigerated, which is an issue when traveling so we have to haul a cooler around with us. On our way home, as the ice melted, the pills got wet and were ruined so we had to call UAB and get an emergency shipment of pills FedExed overnight. We’ll be more careful next trip.
It has been so nice to have a one month break from UAB but we’ll be headed back up there next week. This will be an easy visit, meaning no MRI, just lab work, EKG and an eye exam so our main focus will be choosing a good restaurant for our one night in Birmingham. Let no one say that the Schaffers do not take lemons and make lemonade.