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Easter when things seemed simpler

It’s funny the things the things I’ve been remembering lately.

My memories have been flooded with thoughts of high school, college, elementary school and track meets and ball games.

And that Easter weekend many, many years ago when I saw the Easter Bunny, actually, a rabbit seeking shelter from the rain under some hedges in our backyard, but at the time, the coincidence was unbelievable.

I was 12 then, that period of age where you start having your doubts about Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny and the other benevolent mythical creatures of childhood. My sister was 6, and my brother was 3. Our cousin, who was also 6, was visiting us with other relatives.

It was Holy Saturday, the day before Easter, and it had been raining pretty heavily in the afternoon and into the evening. We were in the kitchen dying eggs and my mother was busy cooking lunch for Sunday as my aunts watched (the kitchen was mom’s domain, and one treaded lightly while she was cooking). My father had gone to the store for something, and when he came home, he burst in through the back door motioning to me, my brother and sister and our cousin to come to the door.

“Look out there,” he said, pointing to the beams from his headlights. There it was, a pretty good-sized bunny sitting quietly under the bushes in the rain. The sight drew some wide-eyed looks from the younger children, and I must admit, I was a bit surprised, too.

“It couldn’t have come at a better time,” one of my aunts said.

For some reason, I remember that time fondly, along with waking Easter morning and finding chocolate marshmallow eggs in my shoes and a big nest of goodies surrounding a large, foil-wrapped chocolate rabbit. It was a time I remembered when our daughter, now grown, was little and came into our living room wide-eyed and excited to see her Easter basket and the plush lamb or rabbit sitting beside it.

This time of year, I like to bring those memories back and remember when things seemed a little simpler. And remember the center of my world was, as it is now, my wife and daughter and what they mean to me.

And one more thing.

Sunday is Easter, and as I’ve gotten older, I’ve realized it’s much more than a clutch of chocolate eggs or Peeps. This is a time of renewal; a time when we should take stock of ourselves, remember what we’re celebrating, and how much we can learn from the sacrifice of one man and from those who follow his legacy of spreading love and peace and trying to make a difference in hopes the world change.

While we’re enjoying the company of family, Sunday dinner and those chocolate eggs and bunnies, take time out to remember that man on the cross and those who follow in his footsteps to make the world a better place.

Happy Easter.

John Surratt is a reporter for The Vicksburg Post. He can be reached at john.surratt@vicksburgpost.com.

About John Surratt

John Surratt is a graduate of Louisiana State University with a degree in general studies. He has worked as an editor, reporter and photographer for newspapers in Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama. He has been a member of The Vicksburg Post staff since 2011 and covers city government. He and his wife attend St. Paul Catholic Church and he is a member of the Port City Kiwanis Club.

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