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Just a memory



I re-read my entry, bitching about having to climb West Middletown hill. As I drove that way Thursday & Friday I thought about a time when I was 15 and it was slick out and I was riding with my very petite Nana in her station wagon and we were trying to climb that hill.

We were behind this large line of cars. Several cars had already pulled off to the side because they could not make it.

We were inching slowly. We started this inching at the first Hill Street enterance. That's not too bad a grade there to climb. It starts its worst part just past the second enterance to Hill Street. That's where it takes a curve to the right and continues this up the hill. It is also where it starts its upward climb.

So to have a curve and a climb at the same time causes the hill to be difficult to navigate in bad snow / icy weather.

Nana was always a worry wort. She was wringing the steering wheel. If she could have let go and wrung her hands she would have. She was rocking back and forth in the drivers seat and muttering out loud about how she hoped that we could make it home. I sat there and tried to calm her but eventually gave up because I wasn't getting through.

As we pass the second or third car off to the side, and just before the curve and the climb, I looked over to the second enterance to Hill Street. A large car (land yaucht) that could not make it had backed up Hill Street and had parked at the stop sign.

I pointed that out to my Nana. She simply nodded and continued wringing the steering wheel and muttering, never taking her eyes off the road and car in front of us.

I watch as the person gets out of the car and stands there looking around, apparently trying to figure out how the heck they can get a ride.

We continued slowly inching along in this massive line of cars, trucks and semis. It was so slow in fact that I could have jumped out, without fear of getting hurt, and jogged up the hill before the first car even came around the curve.

As I watched this person standing there in the snow that was coming down, I recognized the figure. Inwardly I got excited and bells and whistles were going off in my head. I could have vibrated.

I attempted yelling out the window. 'Hey! Over here!' This was upsetting my Nana and it was not getting the person's attention. I got smacked on the leg and told to roll up the window because we didn't want to pick up strange people and possibly get hurt by them. You know, the whole hitchhiker kills the person who picks them up thing.

What I did then about flipped my Nana out. I opened the door and got out of the moving car. Like I said, it was going so slow anyway...

She yelled at me to get back in and where did I think I was going. I told her that she would see and that her prayers about getting up the hill had been answered. She was very confused.

So I ran up to the person at the bottom of Hill Street and said "Hey Lady. Need a lift?"

My mom was never so happy to see me in her whole life.

We ran for Nana and as I opened the passenger door I told her to quickly put the station wagon in park because someone else would be driving. By this time was Nana thought I had cracked and was very alarmed. I told her to trust me and just do it and to scoot over into the middle.

She did. My mom then climbed in the driver's side.

Nana about screamed. I don't know if she was freaked out because she didn't know what to expect or that she was so very happy to see my mother.

I said "Nana, here's our new driver."

There was much discussion about mom leaving her car where it was at and such on our way home. We made it up the hill just fine with my mom driving and there was no more hand wringing and no more muttering.

We made it to Nana & Papaw's house where the station wagon immediately went into the garage.

Mom and I walked home.

Before you are more confused about how we walked home, let me tell those of you who do not know my family, if you remove the fence at the rear of my mom's garden area, you are on my Papaw's farm.

My mother lives within walking distance of her parents. I have made the walk both on the road and through the fields numerous times in my life.

That's how we walked home.

My mom's a good driver. My Nana got her license out of necessity. Nana's first ever drive home, she ran off the road and into the field, taking out one of Papaw's fences. Mom and Papaw were in the car. My mom swore that day, in front of her parents, that when she was big enough to get her drivers license my Nana would never have to drive anywhere again.

Of course my Nana obviously continued to drive. But when we went out together with mom, mom drove.

And when I got old enough to drive, going out with Nana, Nana never drove me anywhere again.

Papaw only lost his own drivers license within these last 5 years. It was due to him accidently going the wrong way on a one way street. Once he realized this he found the first place he could to turn around. However by that time a sheriff had spotted him and ticketed him.

He went before the Judge and the Judge asked him when he got his drivers license. Papaw said when they made it manditory to have one. The Judge asked him how long he had been driving. Papaw said, probably before your parents were even a twinkle in your grandparets eyes.

The Judge laughed and said "And just when would that be Mr. M?" Papaw told him that he was driving when you had to crank a car to get it started. (I remember him telling me he had cranked it and when it still didn't start he kicked, hard, and it started right up.) Then the Judge fined him court costs only and told him he had to give up his license to which Papaw agreed.

Wow that was longer than I expected it to be. One memory lead to another. But in the end they are interconnected.

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