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Velma's Work
Valiantly Velma - Page 14

Water in the Rural - For all races

“There will be wars and rumors of wars,” so states a writer of antiquity.

There was a war, without question. The battle was close and real. The war, though, was on poverty, which came as something that was abstract and illusive. There were no lines of demarcation, no marching troupes and not any fronts. Instead, insidious little playing of games sometimes actually led to the death of the participants, literally or figuratively, maybe just through the ruining of one or another’s reputation or credibility, or like Mathee’s husband who had actually lost his life. Maude Chessawalla gave up her life. They would receive no medals for valor. How could they when, no war in reality existed or had actually been declared. Valiant they were with a warrior’s heart to know what they wanted for their children and did say so with words like, “This country has freedom. Why can’t we? Don’t we have the right to be free of poverty?”

Mathee was still in mourning for her husband but took the time to call on Velma at her home. Velma stopped all her activities and immediately sat with her friend while they drank coffee together. Soft breezes blew through the house and picked up the sweet scent of honeysuckle her own mother so enjoyed. Giant old trees stood around the place and cooled those same breezes. The house was modest but the total surrounding of the structure with thoughtful landscaping created an oasis of sorts for anyone who wished to take a moment away from the weight of their problems. Still, Mathee wasn’t a woman to hesitate in giving a reason for her visit.

“You know our house is finished?” She opened the conversation. The quiet little kitchen seemed to wrap its arms around these two old friends. They were bound together with shared experiences in the time when girlish laughter was a part of their life. Both the women’s only flaw was to be born into poverty and yet, to have been so beautiful. Mathee was small and delicate with a personality of sweetness that had not been destroyed even with her having lived through hardships.

“Well, yes! I do know. Have you moved your family into it?” Velma’s intuitive sensitivities caused her to often suspect the situation before it was revealed by a person.

“I have to tell you it has been miserable.” Mathee tilted her head to one side as she did when perplexed.

“Whatever is wrong?” Velma gave the woman her whole attention.

“The rural water has not reached our place yet. We had a terrible time while trying to provide water for the feast and funeral. So many people came from all over. There was no water to drink or for cooking so the children were all having to carry water in those big cans. It was all we could do. Here we were grieving, but still, people had to be made comfortable with food and water. I cooked outside under the arbor because we can’t use the house until we have water. Of course, you know how pleasant it is to be outside and how we all seem to crave that like the old folks lived. Our company was outside, most of the time, under the arbors in the fresh air. It isn’t hard for the young people to quickly learn to enjoy the same thing. We have a refrigerator out there and the beds are nice, too.

“Oh my! Velma was a little more than disturbed. She was angry. “You go on home, Mathee. Let me worry about this. Surely, something can be done.” With usual, clear-thinking Velma knew just how to address the problem.

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