Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Day Twelve

Celebrating the Life of a Friend

Dr.Jim Hodges; teacher, scholar, bringer of wit and wisdom, character. He chose All Saints' Day to depart to another realm, with typical insight and one last wink to the world. Immediately upon meeting him, you realized that Jim was someone special. His wit was lively, his knowledge of the world thorough and his opinions decided.

He was an expert on birds, their songs, their migrating habits, their mating grounds and practices. I learned quantities of things from him on birds over the years. His approach was thorough and simple. Each day, he said, he walked outside and greeted his Creator and then fed and watched the birds in his yard. They would come to him, eat from his hand, sing. From the time he was a boy he observed and studied birds, one island in particular received his attention as a wild place to observe their spring rites and learn their calls and song.

He was a professor and continued his studies every day of his life, reading four newspapers and one book a day, and studying, just last week still, two or three languages, Hebrew, Greek and Arabic being the ones I remember.

A week and a half ago he gave a class on personal finance, the state of the world and how to survive in it. I wouldn't have missed it for the world. As was his habit, it was riveting, controversial, and educational. Until the end, he remained true to himself.

Though I miss him, like so many, I am grateful to have known him in his last years, he touched lives everywhere he went, our family's included.

I do hope Jesus speaks the right dialect of Arabic when Jim meets him!

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