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Masonic News & Views -- A Universal Truth
March 28, 2010
Tislijiet! Brother,

(Yes, that's Maltese for Greetings!)

The CowChows continues to enjoy springtime in Malta. I've come to the realization that it is impossible to describe any part of this tiny Republic without overusing the word, 'Incredible.' The people, their history, the architecture, the natural beauty, the climate, even the food, all incredible. We've been here two weeks and there is still a lot on this tiny island we have yet to see. I've also learned a lot while we've been here. Here's a few of the many things I now know:

1. All the horror stories about European toilet paper - true.

2. 'Old' is a matter of perspective. In the U.S. a two hundred year old house is a landmark; in Malta it's barely broken in.

3. Likewise with 'far.' In Malta a far trip is to the other end of the island. In the U.S. the same distance is a daily commute.

4. Some things, like decency, courtesy, honor, kindness are universal.

5. Kids are kids wherever you go:

I was out for a walk earlier and came across the narrow stone stairway in the photo. The steps ascended gracefully and disappeared silently into the distance. I passed by but on my way back from my walk I found that three young girls were playing catch with a ball on the steps. They tossed the ball and chased after it when it sailed out of reach. Their laughter filled the air and echoed down the steps to where I stood watching. These three olive-skinned angels ran and played and called to each other in a language that I did not know, and yet their joy needed no translation. It was a perfect moment.

I watched for some time before I remembered I had the camera in my pocket. I pulled it out and began framing the perfect photo of this perfect moment. And, just as I was about to take the greatest photo ever one of the girls noticed me. She said something to her friends. They all looked my way, giggled, and then ran and hid behind the potted plants in the middle of the steps. I put the camera away, and they would come back out and play. I pulled the camera from my pocket and they would duck behind the plants, and giggle. I tried waving my arms emphatically, like I'd seen people do, while calling out something loud and incomprehensible but it only made them giggle more. Time and time again we played this game until I gave up, snapped a photo, and went on my way.

As I walked on I realized that I had just witnessed one of the Universal truths that tie us all together. No matter where in the world you roam; no matter the language, the customs, the traditions - kids will always be an incredible pain in the butt.

Fraternally yours,

Tim Couch

Now, on with the news........................

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