The Diary of Lizzie Dopps

 

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Chapter XX
EVENING

 

Two years ago I became ill with the "flu."  In fact, I thought my time had come to cross the dark river of Death.  But I guess God still has some more work for me to do and I recuperated remarkably well for one of my age, then eighty-five.

However, I have not been quite as strong since then, and as the years go by it is a little harder for me to get around, but the help of my little old pal, my cane, we cover considerable ground, and still make frequent visits to the hospital, taking papers to read or pretty flowers--a bit of outside to the shut-ins.

One of the nurses said to me one day, "Mrs. Dopps, I wouldn't be surprised if you lived to be a hundred years old."

I replied that I had not set my time, but had left that to the decision of my Lord.  If he had work for me to do all that time, I'd try to stay to do it, but that I was ready any time He decided to call me.

I still find lots of pleasure in life.  Every summer when Jessie and Walter take their vacation trip they take me along.

Last summer we made a one thousand, four hundred mile trip by auto, all through eastern Oregon and Washington.  It didn't seem to tire me in the least, and I enjoyed it so much seeing many beautiful places and visiting friends and about seventy-five relatives.

In 1936 we made a trip to Sequim, Port Angeles, through Deception Pass and all around that country.  It was a beautiful trip and we had a wonderful time visiting relatives, eating fried chicken, etc.

In the late summer of 1935 we made a wonderful trip to the Skagit River Project.  I shall never forget the beauties of nature and the man-made wonders we saw on that trip.  I even crossed over the Skagit River on a swinging suspension bridge without fear.  This trip included the auto, train and boats up the Skagit River.

In the summer of 1934, a very dear friend, Jimmy Tostevin, who has been like a son to me, my daughter Jessie, and I, took an airplane trip from Bremerton to Seattle.  A far cry from the mode of traveling in a prairie schooner or covered wagon.

I shall never forget the thrill of being in the clouds or of looking down and seeing great forests like patches of moss, ships at sea like toys, highways mere ribbons on which cars looked like ants scurrying along.

The windows in the airplane were almost too high for me to see out of, so Jimmy said, "Mother, you can't see anything there," and he just picked me up and set me on his knee.  I did two things that day I had never before done in my life.  One was to ride in an airplane and the other was to sit on the lap of a man who was not my husband.

From Seattle Jessie and I took the bus and went on to Sequim and Port Angeles visiting relatives for a week and returning by steamer--an all-day trip.

This summer Jessie and Walter are planning another auto trip to Sequim and Port Angeles and through Deception Pass.  They are determined that I shall go with them.  I shall be eighty-seven then.

I am wondering if I shall make thirteen more trips the next succeeding thirteen summers.  If I do I will have lived my hundred years.

I am not worrying about this, though.  If I am still here on this earth then, well and. good, but if my Master calls me in the meantime, I shall be ready to go.

I love to sit at my window in the evening and watch the setting of the sun.  The colors of the rainbow flaming up in the west, the gold of the sun in shades of yellow and orange, the crimson sky, the blue of the distant Olympics with their shadows of purple and violet, and the green of the nearby woodlands--all the rainbow colors are there, seeming to make a promise.  A promise that night is near bringing sweet rest and peace.  To me it seems to be a symbol of my life--the day is done, 'tis evening and night is near at hand.

Now my days on earth are ending,
Like the setting of the sun.
Heavenly ways Iíll soon be wending
Beside my dear beloved one.
Soon I'll hear my Master calling,
"Come, my dear.  You've earned your rest."
I'll be glad when night is falling,
Yes, my Lord, my life You've blest.

 

Preface 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
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 © 2006 Laurie Arnold.  All material presented herein was transcribed or otherwise provided by Laurie Arnold from the unpublished text of the diary, family photos and personal genealogy.  She and her family have graciously given permission for the diary to be posted to the Norton County Kansas GenWeb website, for the benefit of others who had pioneer families in Norton County, Kansas. This diary, photos and personal genealogy may not be reproduced, published or re-published for any reason, in any format, without prior written consent of the contributors or copyright holders.  web design © 2006 Ardie Grimes