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Home > Author: James E. Billie

Goin’ down that road feeling Sam

I’ve been travelling down this road since about 1946 or ‘48. I’ve been seeing this road basically all my life. I’m 72 now, so it must’ve been before 1950 that I first saw that dirt road. Back in those days, it didn’t look like it does today. You can see

Birthday number 72: Butterflies, J. Walker

March 20. On that morning I woke up, walked outside my chickee hut, sat down in a rocking chair on my porch and greeted the day. I thought my mind was playing with me when I looked out in my yard: There were hundreds of butterflies flying all over the

A moment of excitement

When I saw the billboard with $1.5 billion on it, I went and bought several Powerball tickets. People were lined up doing the same thing I was at our local country Brighton Trading Post. I selected all my numbers and marked them on the card. What was disappointing was none of the

‘Christ’ will always be in Christmas

It’s hard to believe that it’s December! It feels more like summertime. If it weren’t for the decorations on the town’s street lights, you wouldn’t know it was Christmas. This year it has been interesting to watch the global issues that affect every human being – immigration, religion, the economy, politics, people

Zen and the art of Big Cypress fishing

Back in the early 1950s, Big Cypress Seminole Reservation was still undisturbed wilderness. Many water birds were abundant: curlews, iron heads, blue herons, diver ducks, mallards, different types of egrets. Turkeys and deer were plentiful. The season’s change would bring in the rains, which cause the Everglades to have flowing water

Big Wind: Fub le che cho bee

Fub le che cho bee season is here. Seminoles say that the Big Wind is a female passing by. You must refrain from whistling or blowing into objects that make a sharp sound such as bottles or flutes. If the Big Wind hears these sounds, she will come toward you with

From the mailbox, a poem to share

Once in a while I receive mail from different people around the world; this letter you see was sent to me a few days ago from Saundra J. Banker, in Salisbury, Pennsylvania, and I’d like to share. "State Road 7" 1957, heading South for Florida’s heaven ... anticipating surf and sun, thinking

Sleep with your head to the East

At an early age, my mother would get me out of bed in the morning to wash my face and rinse my mouth. She made me turn my body toward the rising sun. She would say, "Breathmaker has given you another day on earth. Be thankful and say Sho-naa-bish (thank you)

Life in a chickee on ‘Tahl-chobee yo-gee’

My family lives in a thatched-roof hut called a chickee. It does not hold back the noises coming from the outside. It does not prevent spiders, cockroaches, mosquitoes, rats or snakes from visiting. Wintertime you freeze but in summertime you are cool and comfortable. Every morning we are awakened an hour

Grandkids inherit grandmother’s talent

What I’ve been seeing lately is it seems like every generation picks up the habits of the first generation. I finally got to hear the Osceola brothers – Cameron, 18, Tyson, 16, and Sheldon, 13 – play their music at the 77th annual Brighton Field Day. I knew they played

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