Wednesday, February 16, 2011
Well, today is my birthday. People tell me I don't look my age. One co-worker said I don't act my age. I don't feel my age. I think someone lied. But I must have been born when my mother claimed, because I remember all the fun stuff we did way back in the fifties. In Brownfield, TX, my sister and I joined friends for a walk down a dirt road to a wood-framed shop to buy a sno-cone or a "dime cherry-lime." We watched TV programs, "Gunsmoke," "The Rifleman," and all the episodes of the Cartright boys on the Ponderosa. We went to church on Sundays and Wednesdays. Dad sang in the choir and Mother taught Sunday school. And you didn't have to be embarrassed to say you were a Christian back then. We played outdoors in the summer, picked cotton on friends' farms, rode our bicycles all over the countryside without fear of predators. We had dogs: A Collie named Tonie and a Boxer named Babe. We had cats: A Siamese named Ichibon, followed by Dinghow 1 & Dinghow 2. Then came Genai, who outlived our mother. We had a parakeet named Cutie. She/he never talked, despite the little record we bought to train her/him in English language skills. My brother Jimmy horned toads and snakes as pets. I don't know if he ever named them. Then we grew up, got married, got heavier (well, some of us did), got gray hair, and few laugh lines crease our faces. But I don't feel my age. Maybe that's a good thing. Now, when I look in the mirror, I can say, "Not bad for an old lady!" Another benefit is an added excuse for shortcomings. "Oh, did I forget to do that?" A smile creeps across my face. "Well, I'm blonde AND old!"