Coming Soon…to a School Near You!

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Ah, yes. Do you remember that old song about “Roll out those lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer…”? (Maybe I’m showing my age a bit much to even mention it!)

I remember as a kid how much I looked forward to summer vacation. As a young boy who was just knee high to a grasshopper on the farm in Iowa, summer was a very magical time! There was a garden to grow, baby animals to raise, bicycles to ride for a mile or two down the dirt roads to your friend’s house. There were fields of waving wheat to play in. There was a hay mow full of sweet smelling, freshly baled hay. The summer days were long and the nights were filled with fireflies and gentle breezes.

I was young enough that I didn’t have too many chores to do, so it was great. I remember that I could hardly wait for school to be over so I could revel in the summertime!

Little did I suspect that the teachers were probably longing for the summertime as much as I was!

Saw this sign yesterday in Dahlonega, Georgia and it made me think of my teacher friends. In particular, Kim and Ken, this one is for you! I know that’s not why you took up teaching – you truly love what you do and are masterful at it – but I bet that you can appreciate what this sign says, too!

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY: in 1865, the captain and crew of the C.S.S. Shenandoah, still prowling the waters of the Pacific in search of Yankee whaling ships, was finally informed by a British vessel that the South has lost the war.

The Shenandoah was the last major Confederate cruiser to set sail. Launched as a British vessel in September 1863, it was purchased by the Confederates and commissioned in October 1864. The 230-foot-long craft was armed with eight large guns and a crew of 73 sailors. Commanded by Captain James I. Waddell, the Shenandoah steered toward the Pacific and targeted Yankee whaling ships. Waddell enjoyed great success, taking six ships in the South Pacific before slipping into Melbourne, Australia, for repairs in January 1865.

Within a month, the Shenandoah was back on the loose, wreaking havoc in the waters around Alaska. The Rebel ship captured 32 additional Union vessels, most of which were burned. The damage was estimated at $1.6 million, a staggering figure in such a short period of time. Although the crew heard rumors that the Confederate armies had surrendered, Waddell continued to fight. He finally accepted an English captain’s report on August 2, 1865. The Shenandoah pulled off another remarkable feat by sailing from the northern Pacific all the way to Liverpool, England, without stopping at any ports. Arriving on November 6, Waddell surrendered his ship to British officials.

TRIVIA FOR TODAY:  Actor Anthony Quinn was the first Mexican to win an Academy Award for his role in the 1952 movie Viva Zapata.

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