Yesterday, as I put groceries in the trunk of my car, the thought occurred to me…I have turned into my grandmother. In the trunk of my car, besides the groceries, were bags and bags of wonderful yard-sale treasures that haven’t yet found their forever home somewhere in the house.
My grandmother was the yard-sale queen of Belle Meade. She also knew every thrift store in West Nashville and counted the days until the Ladies of Charity sale and the big Ensworth Auction.
Thinking of her brought back more memories of going to her house for summer visits. She made the best pot roast I ever have or ever will put in my mouth. She and my grandfather did not keep a lot of groceries and no junk food, but there was always something delicious in the kitchen like rice pudding or banana pudding.
She took us on little excursions during the day to places like the Life and Casualty Tower (which was the tallest building in Nashville at the time and you could ride the elevator to the top and walk out on the terrace) and the famous Tootsie’s Orchid Lounge. She took us to lunch at Sylvan Park, her favorite restaurant besides the Belle Meade Cafeteria and White Castle.
We rode in the old silver Nova to Centennial Park to hear the Nashville Symphony. I will never forget dipping water from the lake to put into her radiator because the car wouldn’t start.
My grandparents didn’t have a television. They kept the radio tuned to WSM AM 650 – for the news – though my grandmother loved the Grand Ole Opry on Friday and Saturday nights, with Minnie Pearl being her favorite act.
They didn’t have a television, but they did have a little record player that I almost wore out one summer listening to Bobbie Gentry sing “Ode to Billie Joe”.
They also didn’t run the air conditioner in the summer. Each room had an oscillating fan and I don’t remember it being hot, just comfortable.
We went with the church youth group to Opryland, rode the glass elevators in the downtown Marriott and visited Night Court.
My grandmother worked at night as a companion to Mrs. Currey. Yes, that’s the one. My grandmother was the most witty person I have ever met and being a companion was just a natural job for her. She could keep you entertained for hours with her stories and dry jokes. She would sit and watch television with Mrs. Currey and keep her company. Gamma would bring us beautiful ball gowns and pretty clutches that Mrs. Currey no longer wanted. My grandmother had her own room in the Belle Meade Blvd. home and would come home in the morning with the Nashville Banner and the promise of a delicious breakfast of biscuits, country ham and eggs.
I have indulged myself this morning by writing about my memories of Nashville and grandparents. I think it does a heart good to remember and be thankful.