Jolly Funeral Policy

Connie and Marilyn's Toddler PicturesAgents selling funeral policies were a fixture in the rural South.  Our budget was too tight for such luxuries, so Mother tried hard to keep us alive.  Myrtle Harper sold policies for Jolly Funeral Home and Watkins products.  She was a nosy do-gooder who carried sunshine from house to house, dispensing information about people’s financial situations Continue reading

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Five Photos, Five Stories – Day Two: Snowcovered Gum Trees

Challenge from  Author S B Mazing
I am taking you up on this. Thanks.

Author S B Mazing

FPFSChal5I took this picture when we first went skiing here in Australia. Up until today it amazes me when I see a gum trees in the snow. For me growing up in the Swiss Mountains The trees lose their leaves or then it is the trees with the needles. But skiing amongst snow covered gum trees was something special…

Skiing in Australia is pretty good, you know. Many Australians and non-Australians asked us how we can deal with the poor skiing down here, coming from Switzerland. And I usually tell them that it is not poor at all. The slopes are great and the way they look after them and groom them is outstanding. Cut yourself some slack, Aussies, your ski resorts are actually pretty good.

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A couple of days ago I received the following invitation:

Hi SB

I’m about to invite you to join in a challenge I…

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Jolly Funeral Policy

Agents selling funeral policies were a fixture in the rural South.  Our budget was too tight for such luxuries as funeral policies, so Mother tried hard to make sure we didn’t die.  Myrtle Harper sold policies for Jolly Funeral Home and Watkins products for the home.  She was a nosy do-gooder who carried sunshine from house to house, dispensing information about people’s financial situations (Betty Jones was three months behind on her six policies but thought she might be able to get the money from her Mama, now that her daddy had drunk himself to death and Mama wasn’t stretched quite so tight), their health(It’s a good thing, Bonnie Mercer bought that nice policy on her new baby.  She might need it if the baby didn’t start looking better.) and social issues.(Bertha Willis had another black eye and “No wonder Phil Parker ran around with everything in a skirt.  Lucy kept a filthy house and her cooking wasn’t fit for the hogs.”)

Even though Mother had repeatedly refused to purchase funeral policies,  Mother  occasionally bought Watkins Vanilla or Anti Pain Oil for her headaches, so Myrtle kept optimistically coming by every time she was in the neighborhood.  She inspected each new baby hopefully to see if it might look puny enough to tempt Mother into buying a new policy.  When Connie and Marilyn were toddlers, they sat playing in the shade of a huge oak tree as Mother and Myrtle drank tea and Myrtle planned her latest insurance campaign.  “Just look at those two little girls playing there.  If you bought a policy for them right now, I could get them both a four hundred policy for just a dollar a month.  If you wait till they’re thirteen, it would cost you at least a thousand dollars to bury them.”

Mother studied her babies thoughtfully.  “Well, I guess we’d better bury them now.  I wouldn’t want to miss out on a good deal.” Myrtle never even knew she was being strung along.