A visit to Aunt Julie’s house was wild times. There were no rules, except one. She needed her afternoon nap, so we had to lie down from one to three till she was done. I thought two hours of enforced bed time would kill me, but we spent the time wisely, playing semi-quietly, tussling with puppies, kittens, turtles, frogs, or lizards, giggling, and building forts. Eventually we’d get around to jumping on the bed and she’d be forced to quiet us with an expletive, a reward in itself since I never got to hear cursing or filthy talk at home.
Aunt Julie’s kids were feral children, with no fashion concerns, styling about in their underwear, or step-ins, as Aunt Julie called them. I embraced this style and would have been a faithful follower, had Mother not shown up and stuck her big nose in my business.
“Don’t you EVER pull that stunt again. (EVER was spoken through clenched teeth for emphasis.). You KNOW better”
i always hated knowing better. “But Aunt Julie….” She cut me off.
“You heard me. Get in the house and get some clothes on right now.” The breeze on my flat chest was just a memory now. Sadly, I went for clothes. Mother was such a downer.
Mother and our friend Dana took a day trip to a local Jonquil Festival Saturday. After so much rain and dreary weather, it was a glorious gift. We spent the day tramping through displays, enjoying the glorious blooms. The sunshine and blooms sent my mood off the Joy Scale.
Later we found a wonderful old abandoned house. Can you imagine how many times this old door must have been slammed by children as they came in calling, “Mama, Mama!’ ? Late-arriving teenagers must have crept in quietly, hoping not to be caught. Drunken husbands may have banged it as they came in late after blowing their whole paycheck, not caring that a furious wife lay waiting. New mothers opened it, bringing their new babies home to meet Grandma and Grandpa. Hopefully, it opened to more good times than bad.
This shady side porch must have seen wonderful times. The family probably sat here to shell peas or eat watermelon. They probably ate out here on hot summer afternoons and evenings, as the babies napped, flies buzzing on the screen. Likely, they’d have pulled their beds out here in summer to catch a breeze. This is the haven to visit with neighbors in rockers and straight back wooden chairs as children shrieked and chased fireflies and young people slipped into the shadows to court.