Memories bump around in my mind and have little connectors or themes except that they represent family. The back of Nanny’s house, the yard, orchard, and creek provided sweet retreats and a playground that changed seasonally.
I used to stand on the high porch outside the kitchen and I would call the Bobwhite quails who would answer back. From that porch I saw the Dachshund next door grab and “eat” one of Nanny’s many kittens. That was a bad memory which, praise God, has been erased with time. I cannot now visualize it and the pain is gone. I wonder now if the dog did eat the kitten but only mauled it.
Back to the fun and good times: My sister Minnie and I played in the creek (probably off limits), but we waded through it and collected stones. We also helped Nanny harvest from her orchard and garden. She would scoop up produce into her large white apron while we filled buckets with pecans and fruit. That orchard is now a thing of the past as over the years new construction has taken over the area.
Our favorite times involved playing in the ivy around the big oak tree in the front yard. I know today I’d be afraid of snakes in the ivy, but that must not have been a concern then. Rocking chairs lined the front porch where the family gathered. At night we kids would put lightening bugs (fireflies) in jars and hurry to the porch to show off our collection to the adults.
Scenes inside Nanny’s house included the front stairs and the combination hat rack and bench in the entryway. I wonder what happened to that huge antique. In the kitchen I sat on a high stool while Mother rolled my hair with brown paper rollers or she would curl my hair by the stove with the original curling iron. I called my curls ‘ringlets.’