Monday, March 30, 2009

I Want to take as many with me as I can

One of the incredible people I inherited in my marriage to my Dear Professor is his 85 year old Aunt Mellie.  Aunt Mellie is a role model for more people than you can shake a stick at.  (Something about being in Texas brings out my background in southern colloquialisms).  She was born in Mexia, a little town between Houston and Dallas, a tad west of the interstate.


There's an old groaner of a joke about Mexia (pronounced Mu-hay-uh).  A salesman comes to town and, wanting to check his facts, inquires as to how to pronounce the town's name.  One person tells him Mex-ee-uh, another Mu-hay-uh.  Just a little confused, he goes to the local ice cream store and asks the clerk, "would you please pronounce the name of this place very slowly for me?"  The clerk responds, speaking slowly and enunciating clearly,  "Da-ree Queen".  (I warned you it was a groaner!)

Perhaps I should get back to Aunt Mellie.  Despite her 85 years, she is vibrant, active, and has much less grey hair than I do.  MUCH less.  She attributes her stubborn hair color to her Cherokee lineage.  All I know is I want to be like her when I grow up.

Last summer she went swinging on ropes through the jungle canopy of Costa Rica, then caught a huge swordfish in the Gulf.  Should you doubt, she has pictures to prove it.


But her  most outstanding characteristic is her love for family and her love for Jesus.  Principessa and I stopped by to visit her a couple of days ago on our way from iPodite's home in one major Texas city to Principessa's in another.  Although Texas is pretty big, our family members have somehow managed to settle along one of the major highways, which makes it convenient to visit them.

Aunt Mellie, who moved from her home of 55 years to her current home only 7 years ago, brought us up to speed on her family, including grandkids, and spoke of heaven.  She loves parties and family reunions, and I think that's how she envisions eternity.  Her words are still ringing in my ears.

"I want to take as many with me as I can."


I can say from personal experience these thirtysomething years,  anything Aunt Mellie sets her mind on is pretty much a done deal.

Where it's always 9 o'clock

My dear sister iPodite loves clocks.  Her guest bedroom is the clock repository.  Sleeping in a room with 21 clocks is not as difficult as it might appear because not all of them are functional-- 18 of  them exist in a world where it is always 9 o'clock.  It is, however, just a tad unsettling to have that many faces watch you as you sleep.


I asked her about the setting.  Was it aesthetic?  iPodite is an enormously creative person with an artistic eye.  Actually she has two of them.  Is it possible for one eye to be artistic and the other not?  If so, would they be constantly arguing over aesthetics?  Sorry, I digress.


iPodite's response was that she just became wearied of resetting 21 clocks every time Daylight Savings sprang forward or fell back, and so 18 of the clocks were frozen in time.  My sister and I grew up in a land BEFORE Daylight Savings time was initiated, so I can understand the weariness.  I remember being VERY disconcerted about having to go to bed while there was still daylight to burn in play.  When my Dear Professor, ALL his books, our three children and I moved to the Frozen North, where in the fall and winter the sun hides after 3PM, I became grateful for the sacrifice of thousands of boys and girls in later time zones going to bed with daylight to burn so that our three didn't have to walk home from school in the dark!

I also discovered that I have been living on slow Amish time for most of my life.  But I have discussed that before.

iPodite has several wonderful clocks.  My favorite two are the cat with the wagging tail and what iPodite calls "jazz hands Mickey."


I believe the novelist Thomas Wolfe is responsible for the phrase, "you can't go home again".  I know that is indeed true because things change within you and within the familiar surroundings you left behind.

Yet, for a few days every summer, I can visit my sister, and while I sleep in that room where 18 clocks are frozen in time,  my dreams  transport me back to the simpler days of our shared childhood. I  "go  home again" in the room where it's always 9 o'clock.

marjorie & judy

The Grandkitties

Since I have bored you senseless with talk of our fabulous grandkids (the Sprittles), I thought it time to introduce you to my grandkitties (Chester and CC).

Here is Chester, the thoughful one.


And this is CC, the shy one.


Chester and CC belong to Principessa.  Principessa loves kitties.  She loves them so much she talked my Dear Professor into getting one and letting it live in the house.  Our first cat, the legendary Mittens, proved much smarter than our Springer Spaniel, Bandit.  Mittens went out of his way to endear himself to DP.  Bandit bit him.

When Principessa found Chester and CC (who are brother and sister) as kittens, she just could not bear the thought of breaking up their kitty family, and so she took home both of them.  I blame all of this on the Hello Kitty phenomena that continues to take young females by storm just like Godzilla took Tokyo.

Chester is the model of what big brothers should be (protective and caring of their female siblings), much like Son 1 has become.  Only I cannot imagine Son 1 flushing the toilet for Principessa with the same attention to detail as Chester who lovingly covers his sister's, ahem, litter box deposits.  CC appears to be a tad litter box challenged.  She tries to cover her, ahem, deposits by pawing the floor after making the afore mentioned, ahem, deposit in the litter box.

The importance of all this is that Chester and CC are my grandkitties and the loving and pretty much well behaved companions of our Principessa.

And worthy of a grandmother's love, even if they have four legs and long tails.