Monday Memory #8
The front door opened and out she walked. She was only 7 or 8, head bent to the book in her hand, lips moving silently as she read. She walked slowly to the car in the driveway, not missing a step, the ends of her smooth brown pageboy curling sweetly under her chin. I marvelled at her smart outfit; a light gray spring coat, knee length, with black velvet buttons and a matching velvet band in her hair. Her shoes were black patent leather maryjanes which she wore with lacy white ankle socks. "Ah", I thought, "she must be going to church". It was a glorious Sunday morning - bright sunshine, blue sky, birds singing.
The little girl could have been me about 30 years ago. Seeing her read that book with such concentration - not wanting to stop for a second as she walked to the car - brought back such memories for me. I would always take a book in the car with me to read to and from church (of course I wasn't allowed to read while inside church, darn it). It was only a 10 or 15 minute ride from our house to church, but I just had to have a book and couldn't stop reading until we got there or were home again.
Of course this had serious repercussions later in life. I am the most geographically challenged person I know. When I turned 16 and got my drivers license I didn't know how to get from my house to anywhere! How could I, I'd spent all my time in the car with my nose buried in a book instead of looking out the window to see where we were going. None of the streets in the town I lived in for 15 1/2 years looked familiar!
Now that we move every few years, I have the perfect excuse for my lack of direction, "Oh, we recently moved here", I say and continue to say for oh, about two years.
The benefit of all that early reading was great writing and spelling skills which I hope that little brown-haired girl will have, too.