Traveling about in lovely Union County you can see the beautiful as well as colorful, floral plants and trees enhancing the wonder of our surroundings. Coming down from New York on Routes 81 and 77, the atmosphere seemed to change upon entering Virginia and North Carolina — everything was greener, and the gardens seemed so much more attractive, as well as more colorful! It is a beautiful trip.

No matter which way one looks on the world map these days, there’s something happening. Our west coast with incredible heat and fires, last week it was Miami Beach, now it’s Haiti, Cuba, Africa, the floods in Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands, the Olympics in Tokyo, The French Open, Wimbledon just ended, the Tour de France held its final Stage last Sunday, always something going on, whether it be favorable or not. Somedays it seems mind boggling. But then again, if these things didn’t happen, what would the newscasters have to tell us?

While in New York, the annual Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest was held in Brooklyn. When I was younger I watched the results, but now that I’ve added a few years, and realize how many hungry people there are in this world, I frown upon the event. In fact, the event really turns me off. But it does bring to mind that hot dogs are considered a very American “dish.” Probably because of the annual contest in Brooklyn, the hot dog seems to be related to New York City, but in reality, during the 20th century hot dogs became well known throughout the USA. Frankfurt, Germany, known for their pork sausages, has a reputation for starting hot dogs. From my observances you can probably purchase a hot dog anywhere, but it is said that 7-Eleven stores sell the maximum hot dogs in the USA, adding up to about 100 million yearly. Remember to add the mustard and relish! Catsup is for kids.

Krispy Kreme Donuts is celebrating their 84th birthday! Happy Birthday, Krispy Kreme. From all my conversations regarding donuts, it seems that Krispy Kreme is a southern favorite, while Dunkin’ Donuts is a northern favorite. I know both are big sellers. My wish is that they would both be on a Diabetic’s menu. No such luck — they’re too good.

Remember to view the wonderful works of art in Maxwell’s window. Artists who are members of the Waxhaw Arts Council who have their great works featured are: Anju Jain, Bonnie Rusinko, Cindy Moeykens, Deb Mc Connell, Terry Ruhs, Emily Ottaviano, Jane Hunt, Janice Saucey, Jeanne Ziegler, Phil Joachim, Renae McGuire, Susan Moore and Rick Johnson. You can stop in Maxwell’s for lunch or dinner after you view the art! Enjoy!

Today is the final day of Charlotte’s “Restaurant Week,” so if you read this before dinner time, you still have time to make your favorite restaurant to be entitled to a special price. Enjoy!

Council on Aging in Union County can certainly benefit by having new volunteers helping with: Next Door Group Respite Program Activities, Yard Work for Older Adults, Minor Home Repairs for Older Adults, as well as Clerical Assistance for the COA office. Call 704-292-1797. COA in Union County is located at 1401 Skyway Drive, POB 185, Monroe, NC 28111, or visit www.coaunion.org

When speaking to my friend in New York, who happens to own and operate a moving company, he tells me has never had a better year than 2020. The most moves seemed to be in the metropolitan New York area for his company, but Long Island was also a large percentage. Why? Was it the pandemic, the loss of jobs, the closing of schools creating a daycare problem? According to “The American Legion Magazine,” there were 8.93 million Americans who moved between March and September, 2020; 65% of New York’s moves were outbound, (did they all move to Union County?) 64% of New Jersey’s moves were outbound, 64% of Arizona’s were inbound, 63% of South Carolina’s moves were inbound, 70% of Idaho’s moves were inbound, 64% of California’s moves were outbound, and 69% of Illinois’ moves were outbound.

Some of you readers may be veterans who have recently relocated to Union County. If so, the monthly Veterans Coffee House meets on the 4th Thursday of each month. The next meeting is August 26 from 9 a.m. until 11 a.m. at the Waxhaw Baptist Church, located at 8213 Old Waxhaw Monroe Road in Waxhaw. Should you have any questions, call Harry Watkins at 704-774-9509. All veterans are welcome. It must be a great morning, because I know the vets continue to attend, wishing the meeting were more often. You know, there’s never a veteran I didn’t like. Remember what they have done for us.

Some laughs from The American Legion Magazine: “I thought the dryer was shrinking my clothes. Turns out it was the refrigerator.” Another: “Dear Math: grow up and solve your own problems.” “Change is hard. Have you ever tried to bend a coin?”

The Waxhaw Autumn Treasure Festival has been scheduled for Saturday, October 9th, and Sunday, October 10th, mark your calendars, and if you are interested in being a vendor, call 704-843-2195, Joan at Ext. 227, or Mary @ 226. The BBQ Competition will be October 9. This event is always wonderful. Mark your calendar — you don’t want to miss this, as there are great hand created items for you to purchase, and there’s always a “party atmosphere” at this event.

The Matthews United Methodist Church Extravaganza has been scheduled for November 21. Another fabulous event. You can do all your holiday shopping at one place.

The Waxhaw American Legion Post 208 is hosting a Veteran’s Art Expo September 18. Interested? Call Karen at 704-219-8765.

Have a great week, take time to smell the roses, schedule your medical appointments, but most important, remember how much ‘fina’ it is to wake up in Carolina.