Thursday, April 20, 2006

Winnsboro


Missing someone gets easier every day because even though it's one day further from the last time you saw each other, it's one day closer to the next time you will.
~Author Unknown



The visits we made to Winnsboro, South Carolina, are kept safe in my heart. I reflect on them at times with awe. It is almost impossible to describe because it had so much to do with feelings and emotions. Feelings are difficult to put on paper.

The first thing was the welcome. I have never been anywhere in my life where I felt such an overwhelming feeling of being welcome. It was on their faces, in the brightness of their eyes, smiles, and warm hugs. No one has ever greeted me with such enthusiasm, warmth, and affection. I could feel deep inside my heart how happy they were to see me! This indescribable electricity filled the air around us. My Grandparents were always waiting and watching out the window for our car to arrive. They came out to greet us with this unbelievable joy and happiness. My Grandma in her dramatic manner would go on about how I have grown! Sometimes her hugs were so fierce that they actually hurt. I would never complain it was alright. The greetings lasted a long time. What a wonderful place to be. I was folded into a blanket woven from love. It was a warm and fuzzy place to be.

My Grandpa asked me if I liked chicken. Oh, yes was my reply especially Kentucky Fried Chicken. My Grandpa told me how lucky I was to be in this house tonight because he was going to make it. My Grandpa and Colonel Sanders were great friends! The Colonel himself entrusted my Grandpa with that secret recipe! That was the best fried chicken I ever had! I was sitting at the kitchen table. I had to hide my eyes while the secret ingredients were added. My Grandpa sure was friends with a lot of people. He had a wonderful smile and laugh and I can still picture him in my mind. He told jokes that we were not supposed to hear and they were funny. I can still remember some of them. These jokes were not politically correct , they can’t be repeated , but I can still laugh inside when I think of them. It would be a grand idea to add the word Engelbert Humperdinck to all of the spelling lists to ensure entrance into heaven for all. Grandpa’s lap was a special place. I enjoyed sitting with him as he read me a story.

Behind the couch was the front window. FiFi’s, the poodle, favorite place to be was on the back of that couch looking out the window. She was a yappy little thing but fun to play with. After FiFi passed there was GiGi but they seemed so much alike to me other than their color.

My Grandmother was funny and witty. We played a lot of games together. It was difficult to play with her because I had so much trouble remembering the rules. They seemed to change every other hand in rummy. Every time I finally thought I had it down, by golly, they would change again. I am laughing now. At the time I was very confused. She was a good rummy player. She beat the tar out of me every game! The other game we loved to play together was caroms.

Grandma was sitting on the couch. Many things with Grandma were non verbal she did not need words to communicate. My Dad could do this also, a look, a touch; a head rub said it all. Grandma pats the couch and I go over to sit by her. Her arms enfold me and she tells me how much she loves me. I tell her I love her too. On her right wrist is a large silver bracelet full of charms. The bracelet jingled when she moved her hand. I asked her about the bracelet. I liked the way it sounded. She laid her hand in my lap and began lifting the charms. She told me how special this bracelet was. Each charm was engraved with the names and dates of her Children’s births and those of all her Grandchildren. She told me how lucky she was. I could hear the pride in her voice and tone. I could see the great love she had for us inside her. She came to a charm and put it between my fingers and said this is you. This name and this day mean the world to me. I will always remember you and love you. This was one of my most tender memories of my Grandmother. Most of our time was spent laughing, playing and having fun. Life was not very serious business to my Grandma it was just plain fun! She made a mission or game of almost anything. I raced my brother to see which one of us could collect the most pecans that had fallen from the tree. A simple walk to the Piggly Wiggly or Five and Dime was and adventure if you were with Grandma. My Grandmother did not have an aura of color around her she had an aura of happiness. How wonderful to be in the company of one so thrilled and happy with life! Her happiness infected you with joy and that was a wonderful place to be!

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