My great-grandmother, Granny P, lived with my grandparents nearly their entire married life. She lived to be almost 102 years old; and, her mind was good until the end! She sure was fiesty! Many family and friends would come to visit her and she would talk about just about anything and everything.
Imagine, during her life, she saw the inventions of the car, telephone, television, and, a man land and walk on the moon. I think one of her favorite pastimes as she aged was that television. When she was talking to you, she would start gossiping about somebody. More than once, I heard my grandmother say from the kitchen, “Ms Emmer, that didn’t happen, that was on your stories!”. How scandalous for that small town to live the cosmopolitan lives of the risque soap operas,aka, her “stories”!
Toward the end of Granny P’s charmed life, my great aunt, Lillie Mae, came in from California to help out with Granny’s care for a bit. One morning my grandparents had each gone somewhere. Lillie Mae decided she would take her bath. She went in to check on Granny, and asked if she needed anything. She asked if she needed the bedpan. She asked if she needed a drink. To each question, Granny replied no. Lillie Mae went about her bathing ritual. You should know that MawMaw used to say that Lillie Mae liked her bath and it took a while! Imagine this, Granny was 100 years old. So Lillie Mae was no spring chicken. I’m guessing she was in her 80′s, so she wasn’t moving too fast either! Lillie Mae told the story that Granny waited until she was undressed and in the tub and started hollering for Lillie Mae to come check on her. Lillie Mae was yelling back through the closed bathroom door that she would come in a minute. Granny kept it up calling for her, Lillie Mae kept saying she would be there in a minute. Granny started shaking the bedrails of her hospital bed that had been brought in for her.
Finally, Granny started yelling, “Fire!” There’s a fire in here! So, Lillie Mae pulled her old naked , wet self out of the tub, went running through the house, I imagine dripping wet. I’m hoping she grabbed a towel! Anyway, she got to Granny’s room and no fire was to be found! Lillie Mae told Granny that she was going to “blister her behind”! That is quite a visual, huh? It is one of my favorite stories, and there are plenty more. I named my daughter for this incredible woman. I imagine Granny P would have gotten a kick out her great-great-grandchildren, too! Granny P and my other family members who have passed live on through our stories that we tell our kids. I hope to honor their memory and their legacy with my words.