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My wife swooned!
Yes, I am not exaggerating one bit. When I showed my wife the agenda for the 2005 League of the South Summer School, she swooned. Her eyes first misted, then glazed over with longing. The unspoken wish hung heavy on the air: "If only I could go."
She glanced at the Agenda. "Oh, look -- Tuesday evening. Jim Kibler. A tour of Southern gardens in Charleston. Charleston." That last word wasn't spoken, just sighed.
She looked at the Agenda again. "And Wednesday morning. Jim Kibler -- Part two of a tour of Southern Gardens. In Charleston." Again she sighed, "Charleston."
Y'all have to excuse her. She's addicted to gardening. She even took the University of Tennessee Master Gardener class for four months. And she also knows Jim Kibler, and even once enjoyed the privilege of a garden tour at his South Carolina home, so she understands how much a "Jim Kibler tour" means.
I felt terrible. It's not like we keep her locked in a room all the time and only let her out for work and meals, but really, she seldom does get to take time off and do what she likes. Why not let her go to the Summer School? After all, it's only five days. How much does it cost? $599. Whoa! But wait a minute. That $599 covers not only the five day League Summer School, but also every single delicious meal and a private room at St. Christopher's Retreat, tucked away with its decks stretched out under the pines. About 150 feet away, through the fragrant bushes and palmetto, the surf is pounding on the South Carolina beach.
That $599 buys even more. includes not only the school and the tours of Charleston with Jim Kibler, but also Professor David Aiken speaking on Antebellum Charleston and Charleston during Reconstruction. I heard David Aiken at the 1998 Summer School at the very same place, and still remember the tears starting to my eyes when he read poetry by Henry Timrod and William Gilmore Semmes. And Fleming will be there, too -- on "Southern Culture and the Classical Tradition." I still remember nearly every word of the presentation Tom Fleming made at Beersheba Springs at the 2000 Summer School, about the tradition of the farmer-soldier in classical antiquity. Heavens, he made clear connections. Wait, wait -- look at that. Tom Fleming will be speaking about agrarianism, too.
And Mark Winchell! I just got back from the Georgia hedge school on Agrarianism that Mark Winchell taught last weekend. He lectured five and a half hours, never repeated himself, and held me spellbound the entire time. And look -- Mark will be talking about the Copperhead Cinema -- Ride with the Devil and Gangs of New York. Oh, no -- he'll be discussing Ron Maxwell's Gods & Generals and Gettysburg, too. And before that he'll be talking about The Dream of the South in the music of Stephen Foster and Daniel Emmett. (Tell me again exactly why I have not already signed up for this??)
I see that Val Green is talking about the "Culture of South Carolina Indians." Him I don't know , but if the League has asked him to speak at a Summer School, I know he'll be fascinating. And last but not least, Michael Hill discussing the Celtic Influence on Southern Culture. Hill has forgotten more about the Scots and Irish than I'll every know.
This is ridiculous, I thought, to waste an opportunity like this. Hold it -- I can even make it educational. My high school senior, Zachariah, doesn't know anything about all this. Don't I want him to grow up to reclaim Southern culture? Why am I wasting my money on other things when that's exactly what I want him to learn?
This is ridiculous. All accommodations and all meals for five days for $599? Preposterous. Motel rooms for five days alone would cost more than that, and and fifteen meals at another $10 apiece, would make that nearly a thousand bucks if I tried to take a vacation at the beach. And how can the League offer all that for $599, and afford speakers like Jim Kibler, David Aiken, Tom Fleming, Mark Winchell, and Michael Hill? How can they make any money at that measly $599?
Beats me, but that's the offer, and I'm taking them up on it. I'm sending my wife, Susan, and my son, Zachariah, and I'm reserving two spots for them this very day, before every spot is gone.
Now think about it. Can you really afford to let your family -- not to mention yourself -- miss this League Summer School? If you don't hurry and make your reservations, it will be too late. Call Michael or Sara Hill right now at (800) 888-3163, and reserve your spots.
I'll promise you, it will be a time you will never forget.
God save the South!
AGENDA FOR 2005 LSI SUMMER SCHOOL
CAMP ST. CHRISTOPHER
SEABROOK ISLAND, SOUTH CAROLINA
RECLAIMING SOUTHERN CULTURE