My cousin, Connie, and I were talking about her Mamma who was my Aunt Nora. We were discussing her house in Macon Georgia. I had Googled the address but the satellite view showed little except for trees which are forty years older than the last time I was there. Mamma lived on the corner but there was a small house behind it her house where her son and his family lived. Behind that house was a fenced in area with a horse.
During the summer my parents sent my brother and me to the “country” away from Queens, New York. This was an opportunity to visit and know our family and have a change of scenery. On some days we would pile into her car and go to the Farmers’ Market. She would buy butter beans, black-eyed peas, beans, and corn. She would plunk us kids (four or five of us) into the living room each with a bowl of a vegetable and we would shell the beans and peas and snap the beans. The hulls would end up in grocery bags. While we were shelling and snapping, Mamma would be scraping corn for creamed corn. By the end of the day, there were plenty of bags of vegetables in the freezer.
Mamma had a fig tree outside of her bedroom window. She made great fig preserves. She would buy pears and make pear preserves too. My cousin mentioned a brand name of fig and pear preserves that she says taste almost like Mamma’s. There was a huge magnolia tree in front of her house at the end of the porch. There was a swing on the porch and it was frequently in use. From the swing, we could enjoy the flowers that were growing. On the side of the house, was a weeping willow. It provided a lot of shade when we were outside playing.
We often played card games too, war, old maid, and at least once, 52 pick-up. Roller skating was always a treat. In New York we skated on the paved sidewalks but in Macon, we went to the indoor rink. Round and round we would go to the pop music of the day. Often couples would skate together in a dance. We would take the bus into town once or twice and take in a movie.
My cousin and I weren’t on the phone long as her son was there and he and his wife were getting ready to leave. After a while she returned my call and told me that she and her son were talking about Mamma’s house. He remembered the house and going to our cousin’s wedding and even recalled what he wore. She laughed because she made his outfit on Mamma’s pedal sewing machine. I remembered it vividly although I had never seen it used.
Thanksgiving memories passed from one generation to the other.