By Baxter Black: PNT columnist
This Thanksgiving I am thankful for many things large and small. For instance, on the world stage I am thankful that Saddam Hussein finally got what he had coming.
But I’m also thankful for more personal things like the fact that there are still airports and convenience stores that have pay phones. They are as rare as a kind word for a legislator, but they are essential to us Verizaphobics.
I’m thankful that we have not had a terrorist act in our country since 9/11, due to the strength and dedication of our troops who are still stationed around the world in harm’s way.
On a small note it is comforting that I can still find a restaurant that is not a chain store — one where the chef is really a chef and not a reheater.
I’m thankful to see roads being built and repaired as part of our economic stimulus plan. It’s long overdue and it is creating jobs.
Less world-shaking, I’m thankful I have friends and family who care enough to remind me of an anniversary, birthday, or obscure paid bank holiday that I probably would have forgotten. I think it stems from being part of the agrarian community where every day’s a holiday, or a work day, depending on your point of view. The livestock need feed rain or shine, Sunday or Monday, July 4 or April 15.
This year I am particularly thankful to the pharmaceutical companies and university research scientists who have given us the miracles of modern medicine. Everywhere I turn our countrymen are living longer, healthier lives. I have loved ones who have been victims of heart attacks, Parkinson’s, or cancer that a generation ago was a death sentence, but today I can call them on the phone and talk about something else.
I’m thankful for the abundant, safe food supply that is brought to us by modern agriculture and taken completely for granted. Nobody goes hungry because there isn’t enough food produced.
Repeat after me, “God is great and God is good, and we thank him for this food.”
I’ve always been aware that I didn’t have to worry about my weight. I am thankful for that. Oh, sure, I wish I had a full head of hair, that I didn’t have hay fever, or I could sing but, ya know, ya can’t have everything, so I’m thankful for what I do have.
And finally this Thanksgiving I’m grateful that I have God in my life.
It would be bleak if our existence on Earth had no purpose, no meaning. There wouldn’t be much point in having a Thanksgiving and that would hurt. Because this Thursday I’ll be sitting at the table with my family, including Mother, who is 90. I count my blessings and thank God every time she smiles at me.