Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Uncles/Aunts (04/17/08)
TITLE: Back home in the Holler
By Betty Overstreet
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Leaning her head out through the opening, she began to smile just a little and then couldn’t control her joy! “Bobby Jo! Gal ya’l better get outa that there bed right now. Yonder comes yore Aunt Lil an Uncle Bob. Reckon them re-lation jes couldn’t wait to see how grow’d up little ol Bobby Jo done got since last time ya was here.”
Bobby Jo stretched lazily as she raised up off the pallet on the floor. “Grandma, it hasn’t been that long since we came to visit. I haven’t changed much since Christmas.”
“Land sakes gal, you done bustin’ out of that t shirt you was a wearin’ last night and you don’t think you been changin’? Folk in these here parts gona be feared of their young men getting’ a look at you. Yes ma’am, them boys gona want to run right off home with ya when ya leave.”
“ Grandma, you just always think I’m prettier than I really am, but that’s alright. You make me feel real special.”
Way back here in the country it’s always a celebration when relatives from the ‘big city” come to visit. All the folks from miles around show up as soon as they get the word. It’s one long round of “ya’ll come by anytime, the beans are always on the stove”.
“Bobby Jo, hey Bobby Jo…where are you gal? We been hardly able to keep our ‘citement down ever since Grandma told us you were comin’ fer a visit. Lord…a ..mercy, jest look at you, all growed up and ready to jump the broomstick. Well, gal, come on over here and give your ol uncle and aunt some lovein’. Seems like a ‘coons age’ since we done saw ya.”
Walking over to hug her favorite aunt and uncle, she felt tear drops begin falling down her cheeks. She broke into a run and stretched out her arms hugging them both at the same time. As she stepped back a bit, she grinned and said, “Uncle Bob, I’m not about to be jumpin’ the broomstick for a mighty long time. I have to at least finish High School and Mama & Daddy are expecting me to go to college where I can find me a rich boy to marry. Now, you don’t want me to disappoint them do you?”
The joking continued between Bobby Jo and her Uncle Bob as Grandma and Aunt Molly moved on into the kitchen to start peeling potatoes and cleaning the chicken for the dinner meal. Grandma knew before the grandfather clock struck 12:00 noon the house would be full of relatives from all up and down the holler. As she continued peeling she began mentally counting how many might show up for this first meal, “Bobby Jo has at least three more aunts and two uncles who will be coming with all the little ones in tow. So sad that Uncle Ralph is no longer around. He was so young to go and leave a wife with three little ones to raise. Oh Lord, help me to except all the sorrow ya’l done brought me. My baby boy Ralph was just too young for ya’l to take on home so soon. Please give me the strength to jest accept yor will as my life goes on.”
Bobby Jo glanced slowly around her grandma’s living room. She saw her uncle stirring the ashes in the fireplace as he whistled a familiar tune. Then her eyes wondered in the direction of the kitchen door, taking in the love flowing between aunt Molly and Grandma as they shared the cooking chores.
Bobby Jo began silently praying as she moved toward the kitchen door to help the women folk, “Lord, I really miss my aunts, uncles and grandma since we moved to the city. Please help me to always remember how much they mean to me and Lord I pray I will never become so busy in my new life that I forget how wonderful it is to come back to the holler to spend time with my wonderful family. I ask this in your Son’s name, Amen.”
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