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God's Nose!
That's what my great grandma Ethel used to come out with when us kids got on her last nerve. At least that's what it sounded like to me. Probably more like "God Knows!" ( how I ever got you kids all up in my blue hair ).

She had this old white car with a faded red roof and ancient transmission that allowed us to travel to the dime store to visit with the birds and sip on a co-cola. She had parakeets in her home on Pate street ( newspaper lined cages and all ) but she always enjoyed seeing different ones. Her husband Ockie was dead and gone before I can even remember. His picture hung in the back bedroom of her house and every time I creeped to the bathroom in the dark, he stared at me. There was a dirt basement leading off of that back room where the Christmas decorations and graveyard arrangements lived in their time off. That plus Ockie's eyes was enough to make me hold it all night.

The playground of my elementary school, Alice Thurmond Primary, sloped down into her yard. My favorite memories of that place are when I got to enjoy lunch with her because of the close proximity. My special menu consisted of chicken and gravy ( iron skillet, in the oven)stewed potatoes and some biscuits. Berries and cream for dessert.

I never knew her aside from the blue hair and dime-store parakeets....so, when I first saw this pic of her, I was shocked. Ethel Inez was probably about 18 and a telephone operator in Halls TN. The thing that struck me was the resemblance between us. Not the waistline, mind you. But the eyes. She had, years ago......been a young girl with hopes and dreams and a job. It was unheard of in those days for a woman to "work" for a living. Most stayed home doing their chores and let the men-folk provide for them and the umpteem children.

Some say the world was a kinder and gentler place then. It was simpler, that's for sure. TV was for watchin' "our stories" and the telephone was on a local exchange with a party line and operator on duty. There were 5 big wars yet to come and the accompanying economic flip flops and paranoia. The good ole' days of prohibition and the Great Depression and rock-your-world social change were not even imagined yet. But they were coming.

Don't confuse me with a gal who's longing for Mayberry. I LIVE in a Mayberry town on a little slice of heaven. My gut tells me that my country doesn't respect what I think or feel as a "working" gal. Nobody listens when I say that I don't want my hard earned tax dollars to go toward a war that is killing many Americans and many many more Iraqis who believe that we're gonna save them from extremists.

Pray and be specific y'all. And keep the faith. ^j^

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