Just Over the Horizon …
March 1, 2011 § 7 Comments
As a young child I had no idea of distance. We lived on McCart Street in Fort Worth, Texas, in the third house from the corner of McCart and Gambrell. To get to the seminary where Daddy taught, we only had to walk four blocks, across the railroad tracks and up Gambrell Street, to arrive on campus, home of the best roller skating sidewalks ever created!
South on McCart, beyond our house, sat two houses and then the City Limits, and beyond this the Gypsy farms—Mother said the King of the Gypsies lived there, but I never met him. Then the road ran on to Crowley … just over the horizon.
On summer evenings after supper, Daddy walked us down the road. Sun flowers, milk weed and purple thistles waved us by.
Bob Whites and Mocking Birds called to us. We searched the ground for tarantulas to avoid.
When we reached the bend in the road, where McCart Street became Crowley Road, we turned back, reaching home just as the sun set. Mother had finished the supper dishes by then and the nightly ritual of storytelling and bedtime could begin.
Often after a walk I’d wonder what lay out there, beyond where I could see. David had been all the way to Houston with Daddy one weekend when he went to preach in a church there. They’d ridden the train and I sooooo wanted to go, too.
“Where is Houston?” I asked when they returned, and David pointed down McCart Street toward the Crowley Road and said, “That way.” Ever after, I looked at the bend in the road and thought, if only I could look over the hill, I’d see Houston!
That curiosity has never left me. That need to see and know what’s out there has taken me to far flung corners—of the US, South America, China and Europe. Yet, there remain places unseen, waiting for me to show up so that they can wow me with their color and music, sights and sounds.
I invite you to take a trip with me now. Go to the Gallery and experience China – just a little corner of it, mind, but a fascinating corner.
Love the image of you stretching to see over the horizon! You have such a gift for remembering how kids think.
What a lovely piece, Mary Lois. Enjoyed your photo gallery, too.
I know this is your adult zone but it’s easy to see why you write so beautifully for children. Either you have a terrific memory or the kid inside you has never left. I suspect both.
As a writer you have so much material to draw on ML. What a gift!
Your blog is lovely, Mary Lois.
My husband’s grandfather was orphaned as a young boy and grew up in an orphanage run by a priest. The gypsies would bring their babies to be baptized (we Catholics called it “christened”). Grandfather must have been fascinated by the gypsies, because whenever the priest looked around for someone to witness the event (and become the child’s godfather), somehow grandfather was always there. That’s how he became know as “the godfather of the gypsies,” a title he held quite proudly (and with tongue firmly in cheek)within my husband’s family.
Do you know how lucky you were to have your parents’ attention, and the experiences they taught you to appreciate? If only all children did. We would have a different world today. Thank you. Lovadell
Ha,you’re comment about stretching to see over the horizon reminded me of my childhood in Berlin, N.H. I could see the White Mtns. from our living room window and while staring out at them I thought If I were to reach the top of those mtns. I’d surely fall off the edge of the earth. Thoughts from a five year old mind.