WHAT HAPPENED IN VIDALIA?

THE FAMILY CIRCA 1958; JUDY, GRACE, DEWITT, MARVIN. TYKE IS SO DARK HE DOESN’T SHOW UP IN THIS PICTURE; THE POMERANIAN IS PUFF, WHO BELONGED TO THE DONALD ESTROFFS, BUT CONSIDERED OURS AS HER SECOND HOME.

ONE MORNING, DURING OUR SECOND YEAR IN VIDALIA, ONE OF THE MEN OF THE CHURCH HAPPENED TO COME BY THE PARSONAGE AND FOUND, TO HIS GREAT SURPRISE, THAT GRACE WAS WASHING DISHES AT THE KITCHEN SINK WITH HER RAINCOAT ON! YES, IT WAS RAINING OUTSIDE AND IT WAS ALSO RAINING INSIDE; THE ROOF WAS INDEED LEAKING! HE GOT RIGHT TO WORK AND ORGANIZED THE NEEDED REPAIRS AND RENOVATIONS; TO OUR DELIGHT THE REPAIRS INCLUDED EXTENDING THE KITCHEN OUT A FEW FEET TO MAKE IT LARGER, ADDING A CARPORT AND A LAUNDRY ROOM!

ALSO DURING THIS SAME TIME AND SHORTLY AFTER, IT WAS DISCOVERED THAT GRACE WAS HAVING SERIOUS HEALTH ISSUES; SHE WAS OFTEN IN GREAT PAIN AND WHEN IT GOT REALLY BAD DR. CONNER’S OFFICE WAS CALLED AND HE SENT HIS OFFICE NURSE TO GIVE HER AN INJECTION TO EASE THE PAIN. GRACE AND JUDY MADE A TRIP TO JACKSONVILLE BY BUS SO THAT GRACE COULD CONSULT A NOTED GYNECOLOGIST AND HE CONCURRED WITH DR. CONNER’S OPINION THAT GRACE NEEDED A HYSTERECTOMY.
THIS WAS SERIOUS SURGERY BUT IT WAS PERFORMED AT THE CONNER-BEDINGFIELD CLINIC THERE IN VIDALIA WITHOUT INCIDENT; GRACE MADE A FULL RECOVERY AND WENT ON EVEN BETTER THAN BEFORE!
AFTER GRACE’S RECOVERY THE YOUNG PEOPLE OF THE CHURCH CAME OVER ONE EVENING AND INTRODUCED THE FAMILY TO A NEW FOOD- PIZZA! THE FAMILY ENJOYED IT GREATLY BUT JUDY’S BEST FRIEND WAS THE BATHROOM FOR TWO DAYS AFTERWARD AND SHE DIDN’T EAT PIZZA AGAIN FOR MANY YEARS!
ON A HAPPIER FOOD NOTE, ONE SUNDAY MR. AND MRS. E.M .AULD WHO LIVED ON THE STREET ACROSS FROM THE CHURCH, INVITED US TO DINNER AND THERE WAS A REAL SURPRISE-A HUGE BAKED FISH! JUDY HAD NEVER EATEN BAKED FISH BEFORE AND FOUND IT TO BE SUCCULENT AND SWEET, POSITIVELY DELICIOUS! THAT EXPERIENCE WAS TO BE IMPORTANT YEARS LATER SO READ ON!
JUDY REALLY ENJOYED SINGING IN THE CHOIR AT THE CHURCH; SHE AND SEVERAL OF HER CLASSMATES WERE INVITED TO JOIN THE CHOIR AT THE SAME TIME AND THEY ALL LOVED IT! BARRON GODBEE WAS THE DIRECTOR AND HE LED THE GROUP IN THRILLING ANTHEMS EACH SUNDAY. SOME OF THE FAVORITES WERE, “COME, YE BLESSED”, “GOD SO LOVED THE WORLD” AND KING ALL GLORIOUS”.
THE CHOIR HELD A FUNDRAISER AT ONE POINT AND SOME OF THE CHURCH MEMBERS WEREN’T TOO SURE ABOUT THE PROPRIETY OF DOING SO. THE PROGRAM WAS HELD IN THE HIGH SCHOOL AUDITORIUM IN THE EVENING AND IT WAS DIVIDED INTO TWO SECTIONS, THE SACRED AND THE SECULAR. FOR THE SACRED PART THE CHOIR WORE THEIR ROBES AND THEN TOOK THEM OFF FOR THE SECULAR SECTION TO WEAR EVENING DRESSES AND TUXEDOS! ALL OF THE YOUNG WOMEN JUDY’S AGE WERE IN THE HABIT OF WEARING CRINOLINE PETTICOATS AND A GREAT DEAL OF DISCUSSION WAS HELD ABOUT NOT WEARING THEM FOR THE PROGRAM; THEIR DRESSES STUCK OUT SO FAR THAT IT MADE THE RISERS ON WHICH THE GROUP WAS STANDING VERY CROWDED! FINALLY, THE COMPROMISE WAS REACHED TO JUST WEAR ONE! THE PROGRAM WAS A HUGE SUCCESS AND THE PROCEEDS WERE USED TO BUY NEW CHOIR ROBES.
JUDY WAS ENDING THE ELEVENTH GRADE WITH THE REPUTATION OF HAVING THE BEST VOCABULARY IN THE HIGH SCHOOL!
IT WAS TIME TO DREAM ABOUT THE JUNIOR-SENIOR PROM AND OH! THE DISCUSSIONS BETWEEN GRACE AND JUDY ABOUT THE DRESS! FINALLY A PATTERN WAS CHOSEN AND FABRIC WAS ORDERED FROM THE SEARS CATALOG! IT WAS MINT GREEN TAFFETA WITH A NET OVERLAY. GRACE WORKED SO HARD ON SEWING IT AND JUDY WAS SO PROUD TO WEAR IT! HER PROM DATE WAS JIMMY BARFIELD, A DOWN THE STREET NEIGHBOR.
THERE WAS MUCH DISCUSSION IN THE PARSONAGE ABOUT A RUMOR THAT THE FAMILY WAS GOING TO MOVE AND NO ONE KNEW WHERE! DEWITT WENT OFF TO ANNUAL CONFERENCE STILL NOT KNOWING WHERE THEY WERE GOING TO MOVE. MONDAY, TUES, WEDNESDAY,PASSED WITH NO DEFINITE WORD!

NEXT TIME: WHERE WILL THEY MOVE?

Author: Judy Shippey

I was an elementary teacher for 36 years with three degrees in education, young children being my speciality. I also enjoy gardening, reading and my main interest is cooking, hence the Adventures.

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