Bobby and I were packing to go to Grannies 80th birthday party. Bobby had never been on an airplane and had only been outside of New Mexico on our RV trips. Needless to say he was extremely excited. We were leaving early the next morning so that we would have a day to rest before the party on Sunday. Grannies birthday wasn't until Monday but in order to get as many Fringe's and Thomas's to attend the surprise party Mother planned it for Sunday. Granny wasn't even aware that we were flying in for the party. This was the biggest secret I had ever kept from Granny. We talked all the time on the phone and we told each other everything. Granny never judged but she always had her opinion. I remember Granny saying to me "you should have charged him fifty darrlin"---"you can't buy nothin with twenty these days". And then the laughter. This was Grannies reply when I told her I had been a prostitute for one night only. Granny was a gift.
Bobby was like a kid in a candy store. But of course traveling was a lot more fun in 1995. We boarded the plane and waited for take off. After traveling so much over the years it was fabulous being with someone who never had. Feeling the power of the jet engines building up speed on the runway. Suddenly the plane takes flight and heads towards the clouds. I could feel the joy and excitement coming thru Bobby's body and his feelings entered me and once again this was my first time. Bobby brought the joy back. A gift of a lost memory.
We landed in Baltimore. Picked up the rental-a convertible and headed to Delaware. Bobby drove. I can't remember how many times Bobby said "I can't believe how green and beautiful everything is" and "I've never seen so much corn growing in my life. I do remember this being another gift that Bobby had just given me.
We arrived at Mothers around dusk and as always Mother had plenty of everything. Plenty of food for us, plenty of drinks for us, and most important plenty of love for us. This was Mothers gift. A gift of love. And she loved to give it. Both Mother & Granny had vacationed in Albuquerque the summer before and both had fallen in love with Bobby. And being the wise woman that they were they loved what Bobby could give them. Not just his love, they knew they had that. Beauty treatments. Hair & Make-Up. A Gift.
As soon as we had enjoyed a few drinks and a wonderful meal she was ready. Mother wanted a new cut & color for the party. And once again Bobby was giving another gift. A gift of beauty.
Saturday was a very long day. I so wanted to go visit Granny but Mother had already planned out everything. Mother had told Granny that she was lunching with friends and then going to a Bridge Party that evening. Around noon Mother called Granny just to remind her not to bother driving into town and told her that she would stop by on her way to Bridge. Mother dressed as if going out and drove over to Grannies around three.
Bobby and I spent the time walking thru Mothers grove and picking the fruits from the trees. Then into the forest to look at the log cabin Jerry and I had built when we were so very young. We walked down by the river where the lights had gone underground that hot summer night so many years ago. As we walked thru Mothers garden Bobby was amazed at all the beautiful vegetables with colors of greens and yellows and reds. He called them a gift from the earth.
Mother arrived home just in time for drinks served on the screened porch. She said Granny didn't have a clue about the party or that we had flown in for it. I couldn't wait until the next day.
It arrived. As did many Fringe's and Thomas's. After the first few introductions I told Bobby to just mix and mingle and get to know the family. I still had some last minute party preparations. I was giving Grannies Birthday Cake the time it needed to cool. Instead of putting 80 candles I decided to write "HAPPY BIRTHDAY KATIE EIGHTY SURPRISE" It was fabulous.
Granny was always early and we all knew that as soon as she drove up to the top of the hill she would see all the cars. Just as soon as Grannies car made it to the top we all came running out of the barn, the house, the grove, the forest, the garden. And yelled SURPRISE!!!! Granny got out of her car, dressed in her Sunday best and yelled back "aaaaaaahhhhhh HORSESHIT" and the Granny Kisses began.
After the kisses, Granny, Bobby & I were sitting on the screened in porch enjoying a Mint Julep when Granny said "who'd your Mother think she was a foolin'?" -- "her hair ain't looked that good since last summer when Bobby did it up for er"--"now get what ever ya need Bobby and get to work on mine". Another gift. Another memory. Katie Eighty.