The sea and other things

August 15, 2009 at 8:02 4 comments

A couple of days ago I was walking along Bethany Beach listening to the waves.  I have always liked listening to the waves.  They remind me or my heart beating or the rhythm of our breathing.  It has the same affect on me when it rains while I sleep producing excellent dreams.  Another creative sound that is similar is leaves in trees as they rustle gently by an easy breeze or field grass swaying in the wind.

I was born in Plattsburg, NY along Lake Champlain.  My worked on the Saint Lawerance  Seaway and when that was done my family moved to Plattsburg where the Government was building Atom missile silos on the Plattsburg Air Force Base.  I was born sometime during his last few months work in Plattsburg.  Then when was a few months old we moved to Nassau Lake.  When I was three we sold our trailer home and moved into a small cabin while my father was building our first house on four acres.  My father was an operating engineer operating bulldozers, back-hows, and scrapers.   My father worked on putting in all the highways in and around Albany, NY.  When work was drying up in Albany we move to Springfield Center, NY 70 miles west of Albany.


When I was young I new spring had really arrived when the peepers crawled out of the mud started to sing.

I may have mentioned this before but a Holstein cows eyes are a beautiful dark blue eyes.

When a trout is interested in what you are offering her they tap, tap, tap, tap and when the line begins to move you set the hook.  My favorite fish to eat is salmon and trout.

I remember one summer morning when I was sleeping in my bed and the windows open I felt a creature scurrying across my chest and I jumped when I saw the black ant racing to my chest.  Another experience in high school on a weekend during the winter by father thought it would be funny to shoot his shot gun in the house out the window at a rabbit.  When he fired I was levitated off the bed in fright.

When I was four or five years old my parents, sisters and neighbors were looking for me yelling for me.  I had been playing on my father’s bulldozer and fell asleep on the seat.   When I was around the same age my sisters  bought a army parachute and took it the back of our house on a windy day.   We held on tightly as the wind would lifted us all off the ground and I was four feet off the ground and had a blast.

I remember when I was 8 or 9 my friend Jeff Schenett road our bikes to Nassau Lake and caught over 100 fish.  I remember Jeff was wild and crazy and our leader.  We were a group of boys around the same age there Jeff, me, Johnny Chester and his brother Billy, Jeff’s brother Kevin, and some times the Buckbee boys who were read heads, and others times Jeff”s brother Jimmy.  My favorite thing we did together was ride our bikes miles away from our houses in the country.  I remember going up a gravel road once Jeff’s brother Kevin hit a rock and went over the handle bars and hit the gravel with his face.  The were rocks sticking into his face.  So we went back to Jeff’s house so that his mother to take care of Kevin face.   I remember making jumping ramps and their were paths crossing  roads that were 8 feet above the path.  We would jump our bikes over the road. One summer dayI remember Johnny Chester trying to over the road but instead he flip backward as he jumped over the road and hit the ground on his back and cut it up pretty good.  He started crying as he should have and went home to get his back repaired.  A  few times one summer we damned up a creek and jump off the bridge into the water all day.  One day we decided to walk the creek back into town.  There was  muddy part in the stream and Billy walked through it and had over 100 leaches all over his body Jeff quickly brushed them of and carried Bill ‘s bloody body on his back for more than 2 miles without letting him down. Jeff committed suicide when he was 19, he was on probation and did something that broke probation and did not want to go back to prison.   I remember playing a game of football with about 40 boys from the ages of 5 to 16.  There would be college students that would show up in our town and reach out to the kids in town.  We played baseball, tie died shirts, and made crafts it was fun.   They still do today, because saw the same thing happening near Hanover’s      Elementary School this summer.  I remember playing a game of football with about 40 boys from the ages of 5 to 16.  There would be college students that would show up in our town and reach out to the kids in town.  We played baseball, tie died shirts, and made crafts it was fun.   They still do today, because saw the same thing happening near Hanover’s Elementary School this summer.

Eddy Martin was a friend of mine who lived across the street of the Buckbees brothers.  My mother worked at the munitions factory during the early part of the Vietnam War and then she got a job at  medical factory boxing up medicinal supplies.  She would wake me before the sun was up to catch the bus into city.  The bus would let me off at the Eddie Martin’s.  I would watch Popeye and when The Three Stooges came on Eddie would come down in his pajamas watch it with me and then we would eat breakfast.  Eddie had three older sisters the same age as my three sisters and we were both the youngest in our families.  He would get dress and we would wait at the bus stop with the Buckbees, Chesters, Sycore, and the Schnetts.  We all went to Green Meadow Elementary School in Eastgreen Bush near Albany, NY.  My teachers their were Miss Gwen K, Mrs. Russell 1, Mrs. O’ Donovan 2, Mrs. McMasters 3, Mr. Bowen 4, Mr. Conjemi 5.  The art teacher was Mrs. Burgess and the gym teacher was Mr. Sapezzi.  We had two principals Mrs. Bell retired when I was in kindergarten and was replaced by Mr. Brent.  Eddie died of cancer just after his high school graduation. 


We moved to the country north of Cooperstown, NY.   I did not want to move, but it was good place to grow up.  I went to school with my cousins.  My class size was 21.  We got to know the teachers real well and they got to know us.  Outside of a couple of bullies it was a safe place to grow up.  I played basketball, football, track and volley ball at my high school.

There was a big tree behind our property on a stone fence line between Mr. Bearce’s field and Mr. Janzek’s field. I worked for both farmers at one time.  I would climb into that tree and look over the lake and my house.  When I was leaving for college  I climb that tree to say good by to the lake, my home and the beauty that surrounded me.  Today that is the place that represents beauty to me.

My two loves in high school was basketball and fishing.  I would ride my bike to the elementaryschool and play games withmore than 20 boys and with Mr. Gibbs the 4thgrade teacher.  I spent a lot of fall evening playing.  When I was not playing basketball I was in boat on the lake across the road from our house fishing.  I would get up before the sun and fish in the dark until sun came over the hill.  I caught many large mouth bass, very large pickrel, large blue gill, jack perch and sometimes a sucker.   That lake was the most beautiful place in my memory.  Sometimes I didn’t fish I would drift looking at the lilies, the birds, the deer coming down the hill for a drink, one time I saw honey dripping our of hollow tree with honey bees working.

I played basketball from 6th grade until I graduated.  Out only winning season was my senior year.  I loved playing the game and my name was frequently in our local paper after we played a game.  I have kept a couple and those clippings in my high school year book. 

In my home we played cards, scrabble and we all bowled.  I loved bowling and my mother went to the state championships in Rochester every year for years.   My best average was 185 and my best game was 268.

There is monument on road leaving Richfield Springs with my mothers maiden name on it, with Moyers, and other names that still lived in the area.  The monument was there because my ancestors were starting a new settlement near the Little Lakes during the American Revolution when a party of Iroquois Indian slaughtered most of the settlement.   We were playing a game against Owen Dejong High School on their court and I was guarding a Moyer.  I thought this is cool two decedents from the revolution are playing against each other.

My father built our house near Albany, New York all by himself, except for the basement cement floor and the electrical box.   He could fix any engine he ever faced.  He could make all kinds of things.  He was good with his hands.  No one ever touched one of his car or truck engine but himself.  The town I call my hometown is Springfield Center in the town of Springfield, my high school was in East Springfield.  This where Jesus Christ found me.   Jim Weeks gave me my first Bible it was Green.  Jim and his wife were gentle people very kind and friendly.  They raised Arabian Horses.  Their family lived many years he had two brothers.  His parents lived into their 80s or 90s.  I spent most of my time with the Craft family on their farm.   Mary, Susan, and Nancy Craft went to school with me and we all were members of the First Baptist Church in Springfield Center, NY.

Pastor Peter Picos had just arrived at the First Baptist Church in Springfield Center the same year I started attending.  During the middle of my second year there when I was in 7th or 8th grade Jesus Christ found me.  I remember the Pastor Picospreaching through the Sermon on the Mount that convicted me with a  sword.  Then he envited a speaker to his our Church and he preached God’s sovereign election of the people he would save.  Pastor was an Armenian our speaker was a Calvinist.  They had word with one another every night he was their and convinced Pastor Picos to the Reformed side of Christendom.  When Pastor Picos started preaching from a  Calvinistic manner it shuck up the congregation.  They asked him to leave but other pastor friends of his told him to stay.  A war then  ensued between the congregation and our Pastor with few others he had discipled.   During this time I went with Pastor Pete and Joy to the Sovereign Grace Bible Conference at Sea Side Heights, NJ.   While we were their there was an accident at home.  The Craft family had been my home away from home and dear to me.  Their mother was killed in a farm accident.  We were heading home early and found a different pastor do the funeral service.  The war intensified after that it was so ugly and hurtful.  It broke that Church and it has never really recovered.   I remember that Church being filled to the rafters with standing room only singing hymns withthe windows open.  Now they can hardly get 20 people.  They have been without a pastor for years.   I hate anything that might divide us as a Church and the session will seek it out with diligence.   People who had loved me now called my names because I supported Pastor Picos.    He is the man that introduced me to theology.  He let me borrow and read some of his books.  He introduced me to A. W. Pink, Loraine Boettner, Dr. Martyn Lloyd Jones and the Puritan Thomas Watson.  I read The Sovereignty of God  & The Attributes of God by A. W. Pink in middle school and read The Reformed Doctrine of Predestinationby Laraine Boettner in high school.  In 1975 I read The Plight of Man & The Power of Godby Dr. Martyn Lloyd Jones.During October 1975 Pastor Pete gave me A Body of Divinityby Thomas Watson.  I graduate from high school on June 23, 1979 and Pastor Picos gave me C. H. Spurgeon’s three volume commentary set on the Psalms called The Treasury of David.  When Peter Picos was finally driven out  it broke my heart.  He lived across the street from the church for a couple years and then he went to Columbia Bible College to get his Masters degree in Bible.  And for the next several years no church called him.  Sometime in the mid 80s a Baptist Church called him to be its pastor in Cherry Hill, NJ.   After preaching there for a few years they didn’t like his Calvinistic theology either so the cut his salary in half, but he is still there.  They had no idea how disciplined Peter and Joy were they could live on very little.

There were men in my life that look over me that did not know my parents.  One stands out above the rest he was the brother-in-law of my English teacher Mrs. Walton who was the teacher with the most liberal ideas in the school.   Her brother in law lost his only child died in the Vietnam War in 1963.  After every basketball game he would make it a point to saying something to me about the way I played the game. (My father never came to a game but my mother did and sometimes my sister Cheryl would drive west and watch me play.)  He gave a scholarship the Edward Walton Award named after his son.  I was awarded the Teachers Scholarship, the Good Citizen Award and a Regents Diploma.   That year I was also award The Sportsman of the Year Award at the Grange Hall the spring of my senior year.

When Peter Picos was finally driven out it broke my heart. He went to Columbia Bible College to get his Masters degree in Bible. And for the next several years a church wanted nothing to do with him. Sometime in the mid 80s a Baptist Church called him to be its pastor in Cherry Hill, NJ. After preaching there for a few years they didn’t like his Calvinistic theology either so the cut his salary in half, but he is still there. They had no idea how disciplined Peter and Joy were they could live on very little.
My second pastor was Pastor Fred Huebner who preached like a Reformed Presbyterian and this is where I learned my theology.  My emotionalismstarted to show up here.  We used the Trinity Hymnal filled with great theological songs.  He told me once I understood Reformed Theology better than anyone else in the Church. When I was 15, however, there were other Christian unsaid teachings or norms that my first two Churches subscribe to that caused me great harm.  If you know what Fundamentalism is like you know what I mean.

Entry filed under: Paul Trask's Life.

Living the Christian Life Let me rant

4 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Pat Farnelli  |  August 21, 2009 at 8:02

    Hey, Paul Trask! In the early 90’s, my husband and I and our eldest 6 children moved to farm a 200 acre historical farm in Cherry Valley NY, the next town up the road from Springfield Center! I had no idea this was your hometown. We lived there until 2002, when our house burned down. My best friend lived in Springfield Center, and we did a lot of farming cooperatively, boarding their heifers and pigs and doing a huge vegetable garden together. We had cows and sheep and goats and turkeys, chickens, geese, ducks and emus! When we were living there, there was a good pastor in that Baptist Church, and I taught at the Oneonta Christian School with him. I’ll look up his name for you. That’s where my two youngest kids were born.

    • 2. traskman  |  August 21, 2009 at 8:02


      I thought you live in PA. I had no idea you are living in New York.


  • 3. Pat Farnelli  |  August 25, 2009 at 8:02

    You are right, I live in NE PA, between Binghamton NY and Scranton. But in the late 90s we moved to Cherry Valley, NY, and lived there until 2002, when our house burned down. During that time period, I was teaching at a Christian school in Oneonta. Pastor Rex Fullam was the Bible, history and computer teacher there. I was teaching Spanish and remedial reading. Pastor Fullam was the pastor of the Baptist church in Springfield Center. He has a brother that had ALS, so he knows about it. He would like to talk to you, if you’d like to talk about that church and how it was later on. He has since moved to another part of NY, but is still a pastor and Christian school teacher. I am not sure of his leanings on Calvinism, but I know he was a good pastor. He is listed in my friends on Facebook, if you want to look him up. Pastor Rex Fullam III. I told him about you, so he won’t be surprised if you email him.

    • 4. traskman  |  August 25, 2009 at 8:02

      So who is the Pastor at the first Baptist Church in Springfield now?
      I know of a pastor that came after Pastor Picos who married a former nun and had loads of kids and move to Cherry Valley and was pastoring two Churches in that area. I talked with him when he first showed up when I was up visiting my parents. I have no idea about any others besides the pastor that took the job and within months had to leave due to ill health. Then one of the sons of the a Church memember who graduated from Moody online cousres pastored their and was called by a bigger church and he went their.


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