Wednesday, February 11, 2015

This is Home, Part 45 - Getting help

This is part 45 of my mother's book about her life, written in 2004.

Getting help

When I was in the first year of high school, Jean and I stayed in Huntsville.

I had a teacher that threatened us with a lot of consequences if we didn't know the divisions of land, such as the SW quarter of the north section, the NW quarter of the southeast section, and so forth.

I was worried about it. Not a single student in that class knew how to do it. I tried to figure out what to do and finally got up the nerve to call Walter Wright, the County Assessor, and ask if he would explain it to me. He was one of Uncle Doc's students.

He told me he had to work late that night and that he would have his secretary explain it to me if I wanted to come over at that time.

It was night already. Aunt Edith had made Katie go to bed and had gone to take care of some old lady. I don't know how I convinced Jean to stay by herself. The house creaked at night and the old lady Aunt Edith was taking care of in her house whispered her prayers for hours. Jean and I sneaked out a lot of times and went to the movies.

Anyway, when I got to the office, the secretary Frances Werntz was waiting for me. She was all dressed up, heels, hose, pretty dress, hair curled and makeup on. Including jewelry, if I remember right. She was slightly chubby but she looked fantastic.

She was very nice. She got out a county map and spent quite a bit of time explaining it to me. I understood it perfectly.

Next morning when we had the class the teacher asked if anyone knew how to do it. No one raised their hands, so I didn't have the nerve to either. Then with an expectant look on her face, she said, "Maudie?" I shook my head. She went ahead and explained it.

I have wondered, whenever I think of it, why she looked at me like that. I think I now have the answer. Small town women spend a lot of their time gossiping. Some of what they say is true, but most of it is not. They can take a grain of truth and enlarge it until it is unrecognizable.

Anyway, apparently someone had told her. This time it was true.

The next time I saw her was when I was working for James L. Stone, Real Estate. She was Mrs. James L. Stone. They had twins and she was expecting again.

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