Susan Spess Shay

Still playing make believe.


Wonder World

I think I mentioned I walk as often as possible with one of my friends at work. (We invite the others but they never take us up on it.)

We used to walk at the cemetery but now we’ve taken to the streets. Carollea says she enjoys hearing my who-lived-where stories as we amble around our Small Town World. (But since I’m the boss’s daughter, she might feel weird screaming, “Shut up! I’m tired of hearing about Wonder World!” LOL. She’s very nice.)

Remembering what my Small Town World was like when I was a kid, sometimes I think of it as Wonder World. It was a storybook kind of childhood.

Monday evening I took her through my old neighborhood. Past the house where I grew up, the Lunsford’s house and Mary Lou and Eugene Williams’ house.

Ours were the first three homes I remember being built in Hillside Gardens. (Aka “the new addition” a long time ago.) All three houses had two parents (none of them ever divorced. Amazing!) and kids to play with. 

This afternoon we’ll be celebrating one of those parent’s life–Eugene Williams. He went Home to be with the Lord (and Mom and Tom and Jane Lunsford) early Sunday morning. Gene and Mary Lou had three children. Marsha–my age. Mark–Deb’s age. And Janet–Cindy’s age. Mom (Mary Sue) and Mary Lou played Bridge together and were great friends.

So many of my memories have Williams as part of them. 

Such as one of my sisters (Cindy–#3, I think) calling him Blue-Gene from the time she started talking. Our family still calls him that, while most of the world calls him Gene-Dad.

And the time the three ring circus came to town, so Dad and Gene took us kids while Mom and Mary Lou stayed home with the babies. It started raining HARD, we looked up and there was Mary Lou, coming right down the middle of the three rings to make us go home. (Both moms got nervous in bad weather as did the person who blew the tornado siren in C-Town! Mary Lou didn’t drive, so Mom stayed in the car with the babies.)

Christmas at the Williams was amazing with only three kids and two sets of grandparents who had only those grandkids, so most the floor was covered with gifts. And they didn’t chop down a cedar tree; they usually bought a beautiful flocked tree.

This is a picture his youngest daughter posted on Facebook of her last fishing trip with her dad.

He had a great smile! He love to fish and hunt and was a wonderful Christian man. I look forward to seeing him again one of these days. 😉

It’s times like these that I realize the true meaning of the sweet by and by.