The second waterwheel--an exact copy of the first
by Oscar Roloff
About 25 years ago, Tom Paulsen, a new member of our Kirkland Congregational Church Men's Toastmaster's Club, saw an article I'd written in the Northlake News pertaining to a large waterwheel I'd featured with a photo. The "wheel" was located near Duvall.
He said, "Someday I'm going to make an exact duplicate of that. Can I have this copy?" I gave it to him.
Today, Tom called and said, "I have just made an exact duplicate of the Duvall waterwheel." When I looked at his creation, I agreed.
Tom is a very successful builder, has a nice wife, Nadine, and four children. A daughter manages his office, and a son is the building superintendent. His place is beautiful.
Uphill a bit from his home, a small spring emerges from the hill and cascades past his house. Here's where he installed his waterwheel. Soon he'll connect a generator to the wheel and develop his own power.
Before I left, Tom stopped me and said, "Oscar, I want to thank you for your helping me get onto my 'speaking' feet. I'd belonged to many local organizations and knew I'd soon be expected to speak before the groups. Being shy, I joined your Toastmaster's group. All of my success in life I credit to you and the group you started. I've been very pleased with what I have accomplished in life." How nice.
Earlier, I'd gotten a phone call from a Duvallite who said, "Because of your organization helping me, I'm now one of the higher-ups with a Seattle television station."
As for Tom, he has a very interesting background as a former resident of Denmark. During WWII, he was a secret agent for our allies, was once captured by the Germans who had occupied his land, was released, and worked with the underground on plans for our possible landing in Denmark if our landing on Normandy Beach failed.
(At the Normandy invasion I had a ringside view of the landing, and in my own War Diary at noon of the invasion, I'd written these words: "We have failed." Good thing I was wrong. "Wrong" is my middle name.)
Someday, I might do a special war article on Tom. What he's told me in brief was astonishing.
Today, at 73, Tom has a hearing problem, but not as bad as mine. Boy! Mine's poor.
I've found that since writing these articles, I try to write the best parts of a person's life, and it is at this interlude of life that I write my best. Strange!