Sunday, January 04, 2009

MTM - Locals

While working in the Church thrift store, I have come to know Jeanie, an aged black woman, and her sister Hattie. While Hattie is still spry, Jeanie must be an older sibling in a family that had 16 children. She totters in with her walker, misplacing it so often that I jokingly tell her she should tie it to herself with a bungie cord. She looks around a bit, but given that she buys few things, I think she might come more for the company and something to do.

Usually, she is tired by walking to the store, comes in and sits down on a short table that we have for stacking things about to be purchased. With a ready smile in her nearly toothless mouth, she's told Chuck and I about her husband who did a good job of supporting her and her children, though she's had to go on without him after his death. Just when that was, I'm not sure.

Recently, we had a bunch of new-with-tags boys' coats come in, and I asked her if she had any Christmas presents to buy for nephews. Oh, no, she said. She'd lost count of how many nieces and nephews she had, and besides, they were men grown now. She was going to make a big meal, and that was her gift. She couldn't afford to buy presents for everyone, but she could make a meal and they could come or not.

What was she making, I inquired. I got a quick lesson in how to make pig feet. She particularly likes to suck on the toes. How, I asked incredulous, does one cook pigs' feet (as I inwardly squirmed). "You borl (boil) them, with an onion, salt and pepper until they're tender."

Sometimes, she makes a bit pot of chitlin's. I can imagine maybe eating them if they were deep fried, but she said they are made same as the pigs' feet - you borl them with onion (that give it the flavor, see?) and salt and pepper. I confirmed that chitlins were pig intestine, and imagined the texture of the meal. Perhaps it is an aquired taste?

She's lived in My Town all her life, and I wonder at the changes she must have seen in this predominately (93%) Caucasian town. One of the benefits of my work at the thrift store is the enrichment of my life with friends I might not otherwise have met.

Tell us about locals that live in Your Town by writing a My Town Monday post. My Town Monday is the brainchild of Travis Erwin, soon to be famous author. He is taking a break until after the holidays in hosting MTM. Chris at e-Cuneiform Scratchings and I will be hosting MTM in the interim. If you would like a link to your MTM post, please leave me a message in the comments section.

Visit people in:
Kentucky with Chuck, who is also my thrift store partner
Muskoka, Ontario, Canada with Jennifer Jilks
Waikiki, Hawaii with Cloudia
Peninsula, Ohio with Debra
Cincinnati, Ohio with J Winter


Notes:
The opposum was sighted again. I "sicked" Daisy on it, but it wasn't inclined to be chased. It just stood there and hissed at us. Daisy was not sure what to do. It finally lumbered off.

Speaking of sick, gee, am I sick of sickness. First, William then Lauren had stomach flu or virus, and Anna is thinking about it. I washed many sheets (William). I am still doctoring Paris' eyes (dog), and Lazarus, a cat I can barely stand as he is nearly feral, has a sore paw. William has daily earaches now, controlled with Tylenol, and while any surgery is scary, I look forward to his relief from his fluid filled ears when tubes are put in and adenoids removed next Tuesday. Lauren will have wisdom teeth removed on Saturday, and my dad will have a stint put in to repair an aneurysm on the Monday after. And I thought I only had to make it through Christmas!

Jorgen (Gotland pony) took on TJ, a rather large horse in a field fight. Jorgen, it would seem, got the upper hand as TJ came in with two bleeding cuts and some small hair patches missing. Jorgen had only one big bite patch. When it started raining yesterday afternoon, however, Jorgen stood up on the hill while TJ came to the gate to be put in first. So who won?

9 comments:

Leon Basin said...

I enjoyed that! Thank You!!!

Jennifer Jilks said...

Oh my goodness! We are looking at moving to a 5 acre property - I never thought about other critters.

I must rethink!

Great story. We have met some rather intriguing, and heart breaking people doing Meals on Wheels, and Victim Services. This is why my word for the year is Gratitude. There but for [insert your word here] go I.

For many they are one pay check from poverty.
Beautiful portrait, Junosmom.
MTM is a bit more light hearted.
cheers!

Cloudia said...

This portrait of a real person, well chosen words, a compelling "thread" pulls the reader through. You share a rich, rich experince that you were sensitive enought to imbibe (first) you SEE this person. Then you shared your seemingly simple words with us . . .words that SAY more than their litteral meaning. YOU, my friend ARE a writer. Congratulations & Aloha-

debra said...

My post is up----I'll be back to read :-)

Barbara Martin said...

Interesting when you meet people from your area and the stories about their lives.

Jennifer, you have wolves, bears (should be hibernating by now) and bobcats in your neck of the woods, and the other less dangerous critters: deer, moose, rabbits, hares, fox, porcupines, raccoons (hibernating now). You'll just have to get yourself a dog or two of medium size that are protective. But it's fun to live on property, life is never a dull moment which I'm sure Junosmom can attest to.

Barbara Martin said...

Junosmom, I have pulled my MTM post out of respect of Travis Erwin's house burning down today. My MTM post was about the tragic Toronto Fire of 1904.

I'll let you know if I post something else.

Passage of a Woman said...

Cathy, you are a wonderful writer and are truly blessed with a gift for words. I enjoy every story or blog I've read. That book is in there somewhere!

By the way, Grandma Nora used to eat pickled pigs feet all the time, the ones in the jar she got from IGA or the pony keg. But, I don't remember her ever making them. Having grown up and probably lived most of her life quite poor, and having come from a little podunk town in Arkansas, she had quite a few of what some might consider unusual tastes. I remember pigs feet, cold coffee, bread soaked in milk, brains and scrambled eggs, and more soup beans than I ever care to remember.

Junosmom said...

Thank you, Leon, and I enjoyed your blog as well.

Jennifer, eh, the critters aren't so bad, gives one blog material.

Thank you for the encouragement, Cloudia. I'll try to absorb your words and make them part of me.

Debra, link is up.

Barbara is right, having 5 acres (which is what we have) is both a challenge and fun. But then, we don't have bears! And Barbara, I was behind in my reading - thank you for alerting me to Travis' plight.

Cousin, these are things I would love to hear about Gma that I would not otherwise know. I do know she spent a good deal of her life poor. It is interesting how this affects eating habits, and how the lesser meats even become the preferred ones.

Junosmom said...

Thank you, Leon, and I enjoyed your blog as well.

Jennifer, eh, the critters aren't so bad, gives one blog material.

Thank you for the encouragement, Cloudia. I'll try to absorb your words and make them part of me.

Debra, link is up.

Barbara is right, having 5 acres (which is what we have) is both a challenge and fun. But then, we don't have bears! And Barbara, I was behind in my reading - thank you for alerting me to Travis' plight.

Cousin, these are things I would love to hear about Gma that I would not otherwise know. I do know she spent a good deal of her life poor. It is interesting how this affects eating habits, and how the lesser meats even become the preferred ones.

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