Susan Spess Shay

Still playing make believe.

Old Home Week


G-Man cemented the long string yesterday (don’t ask) so I went to church headed to lunch at Sister Debbie’s. (She’s the family hostess. Talk about a gift! Hospitality is her forte!) But after church and before lunch was ready, Dad and I decided to take a drive through the cemetery.

When we got there, Grandmother’s arrangement was dangling by a wire (the wind on top of that hill was only blowing 40 and gusting up to 355 mph.) We drove around, seeing old friends’ graves, pointing out where new ones were.

I showed him Cathy’s dad’s headstone and he pointed out Carolyn’s and Mick’s. I love seeing the saddles of flowers sitting on the headstones. (Looks a lot like sweet little ladies in church with flowery hats on.)

The feeling is bitter-sweet, isn’t it? Sad at our losses (always too soon); glad because someone cared enough to decorate.

Late in the evening, G-Man came home and we took an arrangement to put on his parents’ grave.

This isn’t G-Man’s family, but I love these beautiful memorials in his hometown cemetery.

When we had our arrangement wired down (Memorial Day is notorious for storms and winds that blow MD decorations to Texas) G-Man asked if I’d like to go to B’ville or Punkin Center for dinner.

We decided to hit the former. To get there we drove through The Pioneer Woman’s small town world. In case you’re wondering, no. She didn’t wave as we went by and we didn’t drop in. 🙂

Even though the highway has moved, I remembered a shop I visited there long ago called Grandma’s Back Porch that was filled with antiques and antique-looking things. I loved stopping there. I don’t remember buying much, but I loved it!

A short time later, we got to B’ville. Talk about Old Home Week! We drove on straight into downtown, and oh, boy! The memories came back! (The first town we lived in after we were married.)

Just as we entered town, we saw a Murphy’s Steak House, a restaurant we visited as often as possible. It’s moved from where we remembered it, but the sign looked the same.

Although we didn’t eat there, I’m fairly certain the food is the same. A salad big enough to make Seinfield smile, steaks so huge they hung off the plate and a mountain of fries.

Once when I wasn’t able to finish my dinner (back in the day) the waiter stopped me to ask if something wrong with my food.

I had that pain-in-the-gut feeling. You know the one, where you feel like a little kid being told to stay at the table until you’ve eaten everything on your plate?

My first impulse was to grab G-Man’s hand and run! Instead I said, “I just can’t eat that much.” We were allowed to leave after that.

So back to last night–we drove right past the street to the little house we lived in, the pharmacy G-Man helped open that year and V’s, the department store where I managed the junior department.

I loved working for V’s! We had a juke box in my department (although the songs weren’t what I would have chosen) and really cute clothes. The girls who regularly shopped there were so much fun to work with!

After all these years, V’s is long gone 😦 and there’s a furniture store in its place.

When we’d eaten at Montana Mike’s, we drove home past Woolaroc. (If you’ve never been there, make time to go. It’s fantastic!) This is one of the Pioneer Women on display there, and the one I like best. I get tears in my eyes when I think about those women who lost their husbands on the wild prairie and still pressed on–a baby on one arm, rifle on the other.

And we drove through Barnsdall–

Singer Anita Bryant was born in Barnsdall. Bryant was also Miss America runner-up. Movie Star Clark Gable, famous for his role in “Gone With the Wind”, came to Barnsdall for a short while when the town was in the oil business.

Barnsdall has two properties listed on the National Register of Historic Places; the Bank of Bigheart and the Barnsdall Main Street Well Site, an oil well in the middle of Main Street. (From Wikipedia)

This isn’t from Wikipedia, but Frank Blake–the man who established the Dari Diner (world’s best bbq) in C-Town–is from Barnsdall. (The Shay clan is eternally grateful for DD and him!)

How’d you spend your Sunday? Any plans for Memorial Day itself? I wonder if the majority of people will go to the lake or if they’ll spend time catching up on neglected chores.

I’ll be taking the chores route. How about you?

Author: Susan Shay

For as long as I can remember, I've loved two things--reading and people--and that led me to become a writer. Many of my stories are set in Small Town Worlds. I'm a wife, mother, sibling and an aunt. I have a deep faith in God, and an exciting life in Christ. Maybe I shouldn't be (after all, he's God!) but I'm constantly amazed at the things He's up to. :)

4 thoughts on “Old Home Week

  1. Good ole memories!

  2. Yes, they are. I’m so glad I have them!

  3. Thanks for taking the time to share….I too was in “catch up mode” at home but loved the trip to Barnsdall you provided.

    • It was so much fun! We actually went on to Bartlesville (aka B’ville ) but I think Barnsdall has a lot more interesting factoids. (Is that a real word?)
      Anyway, thanks for coming to visit! You’re an important part of my Small Town World!

I'm so glad you dropped by my Small Town World! Hope you'll leave a comment. I really enjoy hearing from you!

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