Saturday, May 13, 2006

More Mother Memories

It is almost Mother's Day -- so here are some more "Mother Memories"..

1. When my Mom and Dad were first married they were very broke. One week they had only a few cents to last them the two days until payday. Mom bought a philodendron. "It would," she said, "make being poor more bearable."

2. She used to make fantastic Halloween costumes for me -- Japanese kimonos with big obis, gypsy dresses with ruffles and shawls, flapper outfits complete with yards and yards of fringe. Every home we went to I was told that I was not allowed to just take candy. I must leave some too. "Nothing in life is ever just about taking from people," she would say.

3. When I was little she would create impromptu picnics. Even poor folks' food tastes better as a picnic.

4. She never really understood how birds "had babies" because the male's bits were not visible. She believed (or wanted to believe - we were never sure) what our mischievous neighbor told her -- that they "did it" beak to beak.

5. She fired her podiatrist when she was 70 because he made some homophobic remark. "We do not talk that way in this house," she said to him. He continued, defending himself. "I am warning you," said this frail old gal on oxygen, "We owe a lot to the gay people we have known and loved, and I will not stand still for hearing them insulted." He made yet a third remark. She delicately removed her foot from his hands and said to my father, "Peter, please show this bigot out of our home. He is no longer welcomed." And he was never invited back.

6. People would give her things. Just give them to her. You didn't have to know her, but there was something about her that within a few minutes of meeting her you would find yourself planning what to give her. It would just make you so happy to give her something. Friends of mine gave her family heirlooms. She would walk into a hardware store and the owner would be giving her special new cast iron letters and numbers for the front of her house. She walked into a French bakery in NYC and the owner gave her a dozen free pastries to try just because she wanted Mom to try them. She would go to a nursery and we'd see her riding a truck with the owner in the fields as he or she would dig up special plants for her to try - free. The list could go on and on. Mom never asked for these things, and was always just stunned when they were given. After a while my father would say .."It's something in her eyes. One look and that is it." It became a shorthand of sorts. Mom would be gifted with something and Dad would just say, shaking his head, "They looked in her eyes again."


Blogger P.S. (an after-thought) said...

Beautiful woman, beautiful tribute. Thank you!

2:05 PM  
Blogger Maggie Rose said...

that is truly a precious story, Mata..."they looked in her eyes again."

wow. special charisma!


2:52 PM  
Blogger samtzmom said...

What very wonderful shared memories... so much of her remains, in her daughter, you know. ;c)

Love to you dearest!

3:09 PM  
Blogger Rainbow dreams said...

what a wonderful person, lovely memories

12:18 PM  

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