Object Lessons: Rantings of a Lone Pamphleteer
Bucolic FuneralLast weekend, we attended my Granny Ivy's funeral in Attalla County, MS. Jon recorded several candid and posed shots from the picnic (some posted below), which was fun.
The reunion/memorial service took place at Edgefield Baptist Church. Don't bother to Google it. In case the 1.5 mile dirt road leading up to the church doesn't speak for itself, note that attendance last week was 29.
Everyone was there. Granny's brother, Noble Jennings, and his wife Inez. A great-cousin (?), Lousie Jennings Jenkins, Noble's (& Granny's) first cousin, whom he had never met. It was quite an experience to watch the 82 and 84-year olds reminisce about the people they both knew, growing up. Noble is the last of nine. Louise, the last of ten. All their siblings have passed through, as they say down South. (I seem to have internalized some southern speech, not to mention a little inflection.)
(Noble, Louise Jenkins, Me)
The Pot Luck Christian Picnic was fun. It Was. All my cousins were there. I hadn't seen Benny Paul in years. He's the guy with the really bad sunburn, which he earned riding his bike from Houston (Jon didn't like the idea of me riding on it. Maybe next year). Pam, Kevin, and all three girls (Lauren, Emma, and little Margot) drove up from New Orleans. Even Eddie came over from Fort Hood (check out the snazzy, beat-up, leather hat) with his son, David, a student at Texas Tech. Aunt Sue is in the middle of her brood.
(Kevin, Benny, Aunt Sue, Emma, Pam, Margot, Eddie, Lauren, David)
Both Granny's daughters, Aunt Sue and Janie (my mom), attended, in formal black dresses and hats. Despite the heat and humidity, southern women dress for a funeral.
(Janie, Noble, Sue)
Granny would have done the same, expected the most somber colors. In deference to a sweltering heat (actually quite mild for the Mississippi Delta, but compared to DC...) I wore a tan linen outfit, black shirt, and a hat to cover my black hair.
I hardly ever wear a hat, but I wasn't the only one.
(The Five Cousins: Benny, me, my sister Mia, CSM Eddie, Pam)
If you have black hair, you know why. It's not the formality, it's the heat.
Jon, lord bless him, wore his dark suit, as did my dad. Neither wore jackets for long. Dad, BTW, is growing a pony tail. It's impressive already. He jokes he's growing his own toupee.
(someone's car, Armando, me, Jon, Mia, Janie)
The potluck was tasty. KFC chicken, New Orleans French Bread, Sue's homemade potato salad, deviled eggs. I find it ironic that deviled eggs are so popular at church picnics in the South. Pam and I foraged through the entire length of the table for different hostess' eggs. We found seven types! Better than Easter.
After lunch, a short service was held to commemorate Granny Ivy's life. It moved very quickly, it seemed, and we were at her graveside, saying a few last words.
Though she's greatly missed, the whole experience was worthwhile. It was nice to reconnect with family, spend some time with my roots, and remember the woman who made us all possible.
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