I have been trying to remember when the last time I came to Mississippi was. Certainly, over ten years ago. If I had to guess, I would say somewhere between thirteen and fifteen years ago.
It has been great seeing everyone. From my mom, sisters, aunties, cousins, and friends. I have been told more than once to not let that much time pass by again. My family is just a little zany, so I got it honestly. But we have fun. For example, my aunt was in the hospital, and we were up there reminiscing and laughing and the room a few doors down complained.
A few things stand out to me:
- It feels so slow. Not in a bad way, but time certainly seems to move like molasses.
- The stars. The stars are so visible here.
- People sitting on their porches. If I were to buy a house, I would want it to have a big porch where I can have a rocking chair and watch people ride by.
- When people are passing by or you are passing by, you wave and/or honk.
- It’s hot during the day, but so pleasant in the morning and evening.
- Watching lightning bugs dance across the yard is magical.
- There are two, old “plantation style” homes that I have loved since I was little that are side to side. It was great to see them and take pictures.
- There are more of the homes a little further down. I found out that some of my ‘blood kin” bought one of them. I was able to go inside. It was so beautiful and there is a big pond in the back and plenty of land. The home was built by a black man who looked white. When the neighbors found out he was black, he was run off, so it’s fitting that a black family lives there now. It was built in 1920, but it was still equipped with a secret room to hide people who were running away.
- My great-grandparents had property that was 11.5 acres. My cousins bought acreage adjoining, and it is quite amazing to imagine how it looked when my great-grandparents owned it, and it had animals and a farm. It is overgrown in the back, but there is a creek back there.
- I loved seeing the homes of two of my grandmothers (I have three…it’s complicated) and home of my great-great aunt. My great-great aunt’s house has an old portion and a portion that was added on. I have never been able to sleep in the old part. There are way too many shadows, but I can sleep in the new part fine.
- As good of a dominoes player I think I am, older players have a way of schooling me.
- I am confused by who some of my relatives are. All this time the woman I pictured as my Aunt Fanny is my cousin Sylvia…shush…don’t tell anyone. LOL!
- I still have tons of relatives I have never met.
Since I have been here, I have been reminiscing about the summer my sisters and I spent here visiting my mom when I was 14.
- That summer, I spent a lot of time with my girl cousins around my age. We each had a “boyfriend.” One night, we went for a walk (probably to look for the boys), and we ended up walking by (maybe in) the cemetery by my great-great aunt’s house. The boys scared the life out us by jumping out of a tree, and we all went hollering down the street. At some point we started laughing, and we laughed even harder when we discovered one of my cousins (who will remain unnamed – lol) peed on herself.
- I remembered the time I almost received my first “real kiss.” What had happened was we were sitting on the bench at my grandmother’s house. I was sitting with my friend, and he starting to lean in to kiss me. I jumped up so fast, and I ran into my grandmother’s house and jumped into bed with my mom. It was a mess.
- I can point at the spot of where the first “real kiss” happened the night after.
- I can remember my grandmother’s neighbor peaking out at us every night to see what we were up to. She would have her hair bonnet on, and I thought it was the funniest thing ever. She was very nice…just nosy. She would also be out sweeping her porch all day keeping an eye on us during the light hours.
The stars are so visible in my small country town in Mississippi. I was sitting with my sister looking up at the stars. We began reminiscing about summers in Moses Lake watching the stars with some of the neighborhood kids. Then we started remembering other things:
- Going far from home with our pillow cases to go trick or treating.
- Going to pick plums from this tree near a doctor’s clinic.
- Throwing tomato worms off a bridge onto cars going down I-90 with the neighborhood kids. One time a car came off the freeway to come looking for us, and we ran to the Green’s house to hide out.
- We would be gone all day playing during the summer time. There were a lot of kids in the neighborhood to play with.
- We talked about all the neighborhood kids from the Guerrero’s to the Vasquez’s to the Green’s to the Gleed’s.
Overall, I remember that it is good to reminisce sometimes.