Sunday, February 19, 2006
"I was born in 1917, in Poplarville, Mississippi. We came to Louisiana when I was four. We made our home at Camp 19 [near Elmer, Louisiana]. That was in an old logging camp."
"We came by train. When we crossed the Mississippi River, there weren't any bridges at Baton Rouge. Each car was carried across on a barge and hooked up again on the other side. We stayed in the cars, on the barges."
Mrs. Viola T. is Mema to us and her grandchildren.
Today is her 89th birthday. She has one son, Danny, and is the mother of two daughters, Velma and Mrs. Jim. Mema also has seven grandchildren. Her kids and grandkids are scattered from West Texas to Alabama. Of course each is the brightest and smartest and has the best job of any in the country.
More: "I had two husbands and buried them both. They both died of barbecued lungs. That killed them. I won't get married again because I can't afford to bury another man."
Mema now lives in Conroe, Texas, fairly close to Mrs. Jim. She moved here from Louisiana and has been here a couple of years now. She likes her apartment but often muses how nice it had been to live in a 'paid for house.'
Her work was stay at home mother, church nursery worker for 62 years, and a caretaker for elderly or sick ladies. She also worked with the Cub Scouts for a while when her son, now 52, was a Scout.
In her 89 years, her favs:
Vacation--a visit to the Holy Land in 1980
Food--McDonald's Double Cheeseburgers and Dr. Pepper
Dislikes--mushrooms, she knows where they are grown
Also dislikes--crawfish, they were Papa's fish bait
Thing to do--go to Sunday school, she doesn't miss
TV program--the news, then most anything, she doesn't watch ball games
Scripture verse--Ephesians 4:32, "And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you." She taught every child in the nursery that verse. And she showed them how to follow that rule.
An observance made by her son-in-law: When she went to the Holy Land, she needed a passport. When her birth certificate came from Mississippi, her name was listed as 'Baby Girl B____.' It bothered her that her mother hadn't given her a name. An explanation that maybe her mother just didn't have enough time to get a name to the nurses worked a little. I know she still wonders.
Birth certificates lacking names must be a common occurrence in Mississippi, as they were prepared for this situation. Mema just had to tell them she wanted to be called Viola. And Viola, she got a new birth certificate with a real name.
The Holy Land trip was Mema's first time to fly in an airplane. She watched and watched from her window all the luggage that was being loaded. She remarked that "this plane is going to be to heavy to fly."
Then too, the plane was full. She just knew that with the full plane and all that luggage we could not leave the ground. But we did.
Yesterday we celebrated by going to Pancho's Mexican Buffet restaurant. That is her son's favorite place to eat when he comes here. They don't have Pancho's in Tennessee.
singing Happy Birthday to Mema
Plus she had a really nice cake,
made by Karen.
Well Happy Birthday to her. Great post. Nice lady.
See you this afternoon and 'happy birthday, Mema!'
Judy Gottsch, your cuz
Links to this post: