My Corner, Your Corner: What’s with this weather?

My Corner, - Your Corner - Tony Callaio

What in the world is going on with our weather? I think that was the big question this past week in Greater Pittston.

I’ve heard of Indian Summer, but wow, a whole stretch of warm weather where the temps were not only higher than normal, but the humidity was very July and August like.

Then, of course, rain on Thursday. It was so heavy at times it seemed like Hurricane Michael was right over our area. Speaking of Hurricane Michael, that monster seemed to be a very unusual storm for this time of year, sustaining an incredible barometric pressure and winds of epic proportions.

It’s very common for a hurricane to lose steam as it approaches land – not enough moisture to feed off and the friction of land to slow it down. But this guy Michael just got stronger as he approached Florida. What was most unusual, the eye of the hurricane stayed intact for a very long time.

Around here, we had summer weather return for most of the week, only to wake up to fall on Friday. Maybe now leaves will begin to turn and we can see the splendor of autumn’s palette.

Mom’s birthday

Speaking of Friday, it was my mom’s birthday. Every day is tough when you lose a parent, but their birthday will always be a special day.

I’ve never missed being with my mom on her birthday and always felt the need to go over the top in celebrating her birthday. Maybe I didn’t get her the most expensive or the fanciest gift, but I always made sure I was there for her, had cake, sang Happy Birthday and in, her later years, made a birthday card for her.

Those cards always contained a special poem written by me. I’m not a poet and never professed to be, but those birthday poems were always humorous,

All the cards were produced on my computer so I could save the files.

Mom’s been gone over 2 1/2 years now. After she passed away, I stored her furniture and tons of boxes at my house. Recently, my daughter Tiffany and I were milling through some of Mom’s belongings when we came across a bunch of things she kept.

I went through everything from medals my dad received for something he achieved to old letters from friends and relatives to funeral home remembrance cards and much more. But then I found my handmade cards. Mom had saved them. That crushed me.

I was so touched knowing that my little birthday cards meant that much to her that she’d save them. It made me feel proud. You know that feeling you got when you were in fourth grade and you brought home an art piece you made and your mom was so proud of you. That kind of proud.

My mom would have been 91 years old today. I couldn’t have asked for much more from her. She worked hard all of her life, having been born to immigrant parents and being left fatherless after her dad died of a burst appendix when she was just 6 years old.

After raising three children, an unexpected turn of events happened when, in my Mom’s 50s, my dad was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. It was a blow to her that was so unfair and so devastating for all off us, let alone my dad.

Mom lived 20 years after dad passed and we tried to make the best of it for her. It wasn’t easy and I could remember her breaking down, yelling, “Frank, how could you have done this to me?” Of course, it wasn’t my dad’s fault, but I could see why she wanted to take it out on him.

I was Mom’s right-hand man for the 20 years Dad was gone and for 14 years before that after he was diagnosed. I received calls all times of the day to stop what I was doing to tend to her needs. Some of those needs were warranted, but most were not. Yet, I still ran to her side.

Even though it’s been over two years since my mom died, it still feels like she’s right around the corner or a phone call away waiting to celebrate another birthday.

Paint Pittston Pink

The 2018 Paint Pittston Pink campaign is over and was highly successful. Barbara Sciandra tells me the organization anticipated an unofficial tally of $90,000. Not too shabby for two women, Barb and Qiana Lehman, who thought about raising money to combat cancer six years ago.

I’m told the total to date is nearly $350,000. That’s a great testament to these two women and the dozens of volunteers with the Paint Pittston Pink movement.

The organization is always thinking of how next year’s events could get bigger and better or how things can be tweaked to make them run smoother.

It’s a movement that never rests and I, for one, am glad they are doing such good work to combat a disease as awful as cancer.

Quote of the week

“The ultimate ground in faith and knowledge is confidence in God.” – Charles Hodge, English poet

Thought of the week

“You learn how to speak from speaking, to study by studying, to run by running, to work by working; in just the same way you learn to love by loving.” – Anatole France, French writer

Bumper sticker

“Jewelry takes people’s minds off your wrinkles.” – Sonja Henie, American professional ice skate

My Corner,

Your Corner

Tony Callaio

Reach the Sunday Dispatch newsroom at 570-655-1418 or by email at

Reach the Sunday Dispatch newsroom at 570-655-1418 or by email at