Let’s Stay In Touch, Okay?!

Happy Monday, All!

May the peace, love and understanding of your Creator be with you today as we go forth … hopefully, in harmony. In the aftermath of this horrific development in Sanford, FL, I can see the complexion of this nation adjusting to meet the needs of us all. While the on-going excuse continues, that there is no evidence to refute that “… Zimmerman was afraid for his life …”, so he chased a young boy and shot him cold blooded, other elements are revealing themselves from peaceful marches and protests to a bounty issued for Zimmerman by the Black Panther Party. Do you think the Sanford police have a clue yet?

This past weekend brought a particular type of peace for me as I sought to enjoy myself, relax a bit, and have the pleasure to host a mini-reunion from a small group of guys from my hometown, White Plains, NY. I mention this because it was not only impromptu, but wonderfully designed by the Creator! I also mention this so that if there are people from your life’s journey that you haven’t seen in several years, but are in touch via various social networks, continue to reach out to them … and get together even, if you can.

Steve Morgan played basketball at White Plains High School and I was the assistant varsity coach and head junior varsity coach for five years there. He was one of the players who not only has the same birthday as I do, July 13th, but who worked hard and made a difference wherever he went. Now, that included playing basketball in Honolulu, Hawaii at a college there; then, going to Japan and playing in their professional level league. While in Japan, he learned the culture and the people’s way of life, put together his intelligence and hard work ethic, and got married and had three children – two girls and his most recent one, a little boy.

Since Facebook came out, and Kenny Chiarito, another student from WPHS, had told Steve about this social network, we all somehow hooked up and became Facebook friends. Now, we hadn’t seen each other in a quarter of a century, and as our friendship networks grew on Facebook, we found still another former WPHS student, Michael Jon Baptiste. He and I share experiences regarding our spiritual walk in life today, and, he, too, is living in Palm Bay, Florida as the caretaker for his father who is over 90 years of age and struggling with different health issues. So, after Steve had come back from Japan where he still operates a security company for artists and entertainers, he had mentioned that he brought me back a bottle of Saki, a fine Japanese wine of sorts.

Kenny Chiarito, who is living in Los Angeles right now, came to Plantation and Davie, Florida to visit his mother and sister last week, respectively. Essentially, our mini-reunion was ignited due to his arrival here in SoFlo. Since Kenny and I had also become Facebook friends, he informed me when he was coming and “Big Steve” asked his wife to let him have a day with us, so he loaded up his Infiniti SUV, picked up Michael Jon Baptiste who lives maybe twenty minutes away in Palm Bay, FL and headed South to meet up with Kenny, whose step dad had given him a lift to my place.

After church and chatting, we headed to the beach to one of my favorite Ocean-side hang outs called Margaritaville and had lunch. After lunch, we walked to Beach Place absorbing the sights and sounds of a vibrant and beautiful Sunday afternoon with each other catching up on tales and stories, good times and more challenging ones, and thoroughly enjoyed each others company. Do this … or something like this, if you haven’t already, and watch what happens! I am feeling so blessed to have made contact with people in my history along this journey we call life.

Have a great day … in Peace!

John I. Cook, Director

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