I have always heard laughter is the best medicine. If that is so I know some cousins who should be feeling mighty good. When the Bolin cousins met on a beautiful Saturday at the cabin on Beaver Lake that my late brother Pat built, I don’t know when I have heard so much laughter. There were nine cousins plus aunts Jane and Drucilla, and Uncle Jim and Aunt Pat, who thought they needed to be there to chaperon such a wild bunch. Plus there were in-laws and grandchildren. As it was at the Braden Family get together there was enough food for Cox’s Army. There has been so much tragedy in the Pat Bolin family that it made my heart glad to hear the laughter. I do not know what all the laughter was about as I was sitting with the OLD FOLKS. My nephew was sitting with us and would you believe most of our conversation was about cooking? Danny loves to cook as well as brother, Jim and of course I do, too. So our conversations were quite interesting. Last year when the cousins had their get together the weather was a little chilly so Danny built a fire in the fireplace, placed a rocking chair nearby and had me to sit there. It was wonderful. This year the weather was just right for such a gathering.

I love the cabin. There is nothing fancy about it although the last year or so the kids have done a lot of work on it. They have added a room which makes it nicer if more family members want to spend the night. There is an interesting story about the cabin that I would like to share with you. It was written by Pat’s daughter, Patsy, for the book PAT that was written by our family members after Pat’s death.

THE CABIN ON BEAVER LAKE

It wasn’t until I became a Mother and had a son of my own, that I realized the true reason Dad bought that piece of land on Beaver Lake. That was in 1970, the year my brother was drafted into the service. He was going to Vietnam. Mom and Dad never said much in front of me and my sister about the danger and possibility of never seeing our brother, their son, again. I guess we were too naive to sense their pain. In retrospect, I know this was Dad’s way of giving strength and union to his family. We started a family project. One of Dad’s favorite pieces of advice was "Always set goals and once they are reached, set some more. You must always, always have a plan." I remember the day we all drove out to Goose Hollow, all except Danny who was stationed at that time in Ft. Polk, Louisiana. The land was rocky and brushy and very secluded. Dad always liked being out in the country. He probably strengthened his faith through the serenity of God’s silent beauty. He wasn’t what I would call a religious man, but he was a spiritual man in the sense that his peace, that only the Lord can give, came to him through nature. That may have been the reason he chose that secluded ravine to work in for the next two years. We were going to build a cabin. The only part of the construction that Dad had anyone do other than the family was drilling a well and cutting the circle drive. This was the first move toward pioneering the ground.

TO BE CONTINUED: I think the story of the family building the cabin is very interesting so for the next week or two I will share it with you.