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Cousin Rufus and the Virtual Blessing

Dear Cousin Cletus,

Hope y’all had a nice Thanksgivin’. Ah et so much turkey an’ stuffin’ thet Ah felt stuffed! (See whut Ah did there?)

Ah been hearin’ a new word people use outside the holler. It’s the word virtual. So Ah looked it up in the dictionary, startin' with the word virtue. Know whut virtue means? “Behavior based on high moral standards.”

“Well,” Ah thought, “it’s good people’s practicin’ more of thet behavior.” Our ancestors taught us virtue. Thangs like always tellin’ the truth, and payin’ our bills, an’ livin’ by the Good Book and such. So it’s prob’ly a good thang for folks to start doin’.

But why is they talkin’ so much ‘bout virtual? Ah looked thet up too, and the dictionary said, “An entity which is the product of the mind or imagination.”

Mah grandson Harley says he does virtual doctor’s visits. Makes me wonder if he don’t need more’n a doctor. How’s the doc ‘posed to take your temperature and look in your ears and throat? Harley says he does virtual shoppin’ too. Says he orders stuff on a line and they deliver it to his door. Ah’d like to have one o’ them lines mahself. Mebbe Ah could tie one end to Lem’s Gen’ral Store and he’d send sacks o’ flour.

Harley’s kids does virtual schoolin’. What fun is they in not bein’ in a classroom where you can pull the girls’ pigtails an’ pass notes?

But you know whut? Ah noticed a diff’rence in people’s families since they been shut up at home, doin' virtual ever'thang. They eat meals together, like we used to, as kids. Since they can’t go nowhere much, they do more thangs together—take walks, play with the dog. Ol’ Rover seems to be purty glad about it. And Harley made a rule they can’t bring their phones to the table no more. They now look at one another and talk. Ah thought thet wuz purty smart o’ him, even if he is mah grandson.

So, Ah guess virtual ain’t all bad, Cletus. Our relatives say they will be glad to git back to normal. Right now Ah’m thankful for their unseen blessin’-- families forced to step off the hamster wheel and spend more time together. And thet ain't virtual, thet's real.

Y’all come see me sometime. We’ll go down to Lem’s Gen’ral Store and git us a orange sodee pop. Mebbe he’ll sell me one o’ them lines Harley has, so Ah can go online too.

Your cuz,


What about you? Any thoughts on blessings in disguise through these last eight months? Join the conversation below.


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