Tuesday, May 31, 2016
My family was on vacation. At that time there were six of us children. Add my parents and my grandmother to the car and our station wagon was full. We were to spend one week with my mother;s oldest sister and her family in West Virginia and another with my father's youngest brother and his family in Tennessee.
My aunt had nine children. Add our six and there were fifteen children in the house. Three were babies. Chaos reigned.
These are the only cousins I have who are my age so we had a great time doing the things pre-teen girls do. It was bliss.
My uncle was a coal miner. Their house was halfway up a bare hill owned by the mines. Which meant the house was also owned by the mines. I have no idea what type of rental agreement there was.
Most of us slept upstairs. The upstairs was one large room. The boys slept on one side and the girls slept on the other. It was all open so the boys teased us all night and the girls picked back at them.
Grocery shopping was necessary. Feeding all of us required a gargantuan effort. So all the adults went shopping taking the babies with them for safe keeping.
Rather than leave us on our own Aunt Goldie came to oversee our behavior. Aunt Goldie was my uncle's sister. She was a little strange to be nice about it.
For those who do not know Lawrence Welk was a Big Band leader. He was known for his "Champagne Music" and bubbles floating across his stage for some songs. He also had dancers and singers on his weekly show.
The night that Aunt Goldie was with us she kicked us all out of the living room so she could watch Lawrence Welk. We satisfied ourselves with some toast and cocoa. And sneaking peaks at Aunt Goldie.
She really became engrossed with that program. when she grabbed a broom and started to dance around the room and up onto the furniture we lost it. We were all laughing so hard. Naturally Aunt Goldie was not happy with us and let us know.
For some reason Aunt Goldie went outside. We locked the door. While she banged on the door we sent someone upstairs to lock the door which was the other door leading outside.
In the meantime Aunt Goldie saw that the kitchen window was open. To get in would require great athletic ability because it was high from the ground but she went there anyway. When we saw what she had in mind we ran over and closed it. My oldest cousin was holding it down so she could not open it. He was stronger than she was.
Aunt Goldie was pushing, pulling, and banging on the window. Some of the glass broke.
Being children we could only think of the trouble we would be in when our parents came home. We unlocked the door and let Aunt Goldie in.
Looking back I think she was worried about being in trouble too. She quickly cleaned up anything she could find to clean.
When our parents came home Aunt Goldie immediately told them what bad children they had. She told them how terribly we had treated her. And SHE TOLD THEM WE BROKE THAT WINDOW!
Of course we tried to plead our case but it was a weak one. We had behaved abominably. But we did not break that window.
At least it is good to know that not all of the strange relatives of the family are directly related to me. Only most of them.