Greetings from the southernmost part of the county. Dick asked me last week if I would consider writing the Adairville column and since I have nothing else to do, I jumped at the chance. All kidding aside, I told him I would think about it and maybe try it for a while and see how it goes. Not even sure if I can write an interesting article. So, here goes.
Plans are underway for the upcoming Easter in Adairville festivities. It will be April 12th from 1-4 p.m. with the children’s games beginning at 1 p.m., the parade at 2:30 and the Easter Egg Hunt following the parade. We are asking all children to decorate their bikes, wagons, skateboards, whatever and plan on being in our parade. Also, all who make an Easter bonnet will be in the parade. Should be a fun time in April.
The 68th annual Strawberry Festival is also being planned. This year’s theme is “Growing Sweet Memories” We will be honoring some very special people and want to make it an enjoyable event for young and old alike. The ever popular Jimmy Church Band will return this year for dancing on the square on Friday night. We are hoping to get the Gospeltones to do another reunion concert during the festival. Exciting things coming down for May.
Stepping out of my role as reporter and into Mayor role, I would like to encourage, maybe even beg everyone to begin immediately to clean up your properties. We have such a beautiful little town with a few unsightly properties. Now before you go asking if I’m talking about you, if you are questioning that, it probably is you. Look around people. You know if your yard and property looks trashy and if so, clean it up. We will have a dumpster here from April 21st to May 2 for disposal of all you have gotten together.
Now back to reporter, I lost my dear aunt this past week, Jean Steenbergen. She was a long time resident of Adairville, worked a lot with the Chamber, helped found the Adairville Band Boosters and worked for the Betts Funeral home, which later sold to Austin Bell, here in Adairville. Our prayers also go out to the Mimms family in the loss of Kevin Mimms. Keep his mother and children as well as the rest of the family in your prayers. It seems we have lost a lot of our people in the last 6 months to a year.
Now everyone knows I have not traveled the globe like Dick so I will be writing about stuff I know or having guests to write. This week will begin a series of short stories about my early life called “The Coffee Bottom Gal”. I hope you will enjoy hearing the ramblings of a poor little country girl growing up in the 50’s.
This story starts even before I was born. You see, the stork dropped me smack dab in the middle of Coffee Bottom. Now, before you ask, I’m going to tell you where Coffee Bottom is. It is in South Central Kentucky right on the Tennessee line, right on the eastern edge of Logan County, connecting to Simpson County. There is no official Coffee Bottom, but the loop as we call it has been Coffee Bottom for longer than I have been alive and that is almost 63years.
I was actually born in Tennessee on my great grandparent’s farm, but we moved to my uncle and aunts house, about a mile away, to be a share cropper for them, which put us right in downtown Coffee Bottom. This happened in the first few years of my life. We thought we had died and gone to heaven when we moved into this house. It had a kitchen, a living room, 2 bedrooms, a screened in porch, an upstairs and a two-seater outhouse. Talk about uptown. We were sure no one was richer than us.
Because my sister had started to school in Tennessee, we continued to go to school there because neither the Kentucky bus nor the Tennessee bus came by our house. Our life consisted of going to school, doing our chores, going to church every Sunday and after church congregating at one of our cousins’ house or ours for dinner and an afternoon of visiting, playing and having a friendly game of baseball. Now how do you go about cooking for 8-10 families on a Coffee Bottom budget? I guess it helped that you had a garden, killed hogs every year, had a beef slaughtered, had a yard full of chickens and was used to cooking for field hands. Anyway, I never remember going home hungry. Of course, food wasn’t near as important to us young’uns as playing with our many cousins.
This extended family of mine was my maternal family. My maternal Great Grandparents had 8 children, 2 of which died very young. The other 6 were Mary Bernice, Sanford Grant (Jack), Elsie Louise, Lena Regina, Cora Bell, and Pearl Lucille. My mother was the oldest of two daughters of Mary Bernice and she fell in love with one of the Russell boys, much to my grandparent’s dismay. Now they liked the Russell family alright but my paternal Granddaddy was known for his drinking in excess and they were sure my daddy was a chip off the old block. Besides, he was one of 13 children and they were way poorer than the Davis clan. They say love is blind and anyway this love seemed destined to end in marriage so my granddaddy told my daddy that if he would just wait until he returned from service, he would give them his blessing. What a lie!!! Daddy served 18 months in the South Pacific during World War II and when he returned my Granny and Granddaddy did everything they could to keep them from getting married. Granddaddy went to the County Judge in Logan County and Simpson County, but they outsmarted him and went to Scottsville, Kentucky and tied the knot. Whew, am I glad they did or I wouldn’t be here to tell this story. I can just imagine a scene out of the Dukes of Hazard that April day in 1946. A young couple in love determined to get married and her parents chasing them all over the country with a resolve to stop them. Can’t you just hear the music playing?
Two girls were born to this union, my sister in 1947 and then me in 1951. That was the year of the big snow that fell in January and was still on the ground when I came into the world. There was also a hurricane that was a big one named after me early on. This could key you in on the kind of person I am. A little stormy perhaps, with a lot going on resulting in a change after they have come and gone. In other words, not quite your normal run of the mill kid. I was born in March which makes me an Aries and it really fits me most of the time. I am a take charge kind of person but could care less for the detail part of the puzzles. This drives my mother insane. She is almost OCD as far as organization is concerned, take that back, she is OCD. Now imagine for one moment being OCD and living with a not your ordinary kid, who likes to live on the edge. Nuff said? So, growing up was really tougher on my mother than me. She never knew just what was coming next. One of my earliest memories was going to revival the night she had been stung on the foot by a bumble bee that day. I was so excited to be going somewhere, I jumped right out of the car and right onto her bandaged swollen foot. She almost passed out. Boy, did I get in trouble for that. Actually, my mother always blamed my mischief and most all my faults on the Russell side of the family. That was okay, because I thought they were pretty neat. So, as you can see there were not too many dull moments in the Coffee Bottom gal’s life.
Next time “Suckering Tobacco”
May the road rise to meet you,
May the wind be always at your back,
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
The rains fall soft upon your fields and,
Until we meet again,
May God hold you in the palm of His hand.
Call me with your news or if you want to do a guest short story. 270-772-2175.