Guess who’s coming to dinner !

12D0D2D2-7E0E-438E-80C2-60035BD90123I was so happy when mama quit working at the hospital.  We even moved into a new house !  There were lots of new friends to make , big hills to sled on in the winter and skateboard on in the summer.  Creeks running through the yard with crawdads and the biggest goldfish I’d ever seen.  A new world had just opened up for me with lots of room to romp and play..  and it offered that and much more for my mother.

1957-Casa-Manana-2-Bedroom-Travel-Trailer-closer-exterior-699x400                        A Vacation Home too ?!

After what seemed to be a very long drive, mama told us she had a surprise for us.  We were so excited and it took what seemed like forever, we get there..  she turns down a dirt road and pulls up in front  of a trailer.  I guessed it was ok.. I liked our new house much better though . My sister however, didn’t seem to be excited at all. Instead she was just the opposite . She acted like she smelled a rat, and wasn’t happy about it at all.  Just as we walk in to our new ” vacation home “… a car pulls up and  a man gets out.  Someones here mama..  Ok,  y’all go find something to do and you watch your sister.. don’t come in the bedroom, mama’s going to be busy for a while. Well for me, finding something to do wasn’t ever hard. I could always entertain myself.  I started out putting a penny in the electrical outlet..  that didn’t feel too good, so on to something else..  hummm, whats that I wondered , I’d never seen one of these before. all black and shiny, interested enough I picked it up to get a closer look , just as my sister ran up and took it away from me. Don’t mess with that , she said. Its a gun . Leave it alone.  wasn’t too much longer before the bedroom door opened and they walked out. He  gets in his car without saying much and leaves.  Mama is ready to go too, so we all get in the car and make the long trip home.  We were told it was a secret and not to tell daddy.   We would make trips to the trailer quite often, never staying long.  The same man always showed up soon after we did. We were always reminded not to open the bedroom door,  We were never there for very long but went often.  One day we get there, he pulls up, mama says the same thing… don’t come in this door for nothing, understand ?   They had been in there for a while, when we hear a car pull up.  It was a woman and boy was she mad.  Now I know what mama said about not opening that door. and had even said for NOTHING this time. But I knew they’d want to know this … so I opened the door.  There they were laying on the bed.. naked.  They started screaming at me ” What are you doing, didn’t I tell you don’t come in here “‘   I was saying but…but…but ,  there’s a woman here , and… , not any sooner than I got the words out,   that woman came busting in and was fighting mama like a wild cat. I saw her grab a coat hanger and watched her cut mama right down her bare chest with the sharp end.  my sister pulls me out of there and takes me in the bathroom with her and locked us in. We were huddled up in the bathtub together, and could hear them going at it just outside the door.   We didn’t go back to that trailer anymore, but instead, we’d go other places like the beach or the mountains and come to find out, Mama’s special friend was a policeman . And  not only did he have a wife,  he had a son too,  and sometimes he would come along with us on our trips. I wasn’t very old , but I knew all the secret trips , and that mad woman that hurt mama,  what they were doing was wrong. Even so, I’d rather go with them than be left alone with daddy.  I loved mama,  no matter what she did.  Thinking back on it all now,  she took us with her , not because she wanted to expose us to adultery, but in her mind she was protecting us from getting hurt.

Mama gets a new car..

We stopped going on all those trips, and mama worked long hours at her new job. She was gone a lot and I stayed busy with my new friends, playing all day into the night. I  could stay gone as long as I wanted, and no one seemed to care.  I’d come in sometimes to  make a mayonnaise sandwich and run back out the door.  I loved it when it snowed, I don’t know how I kept from getting frost bite. I’d be out in it for hours , nothing could stop me. I loved my freedom.  I did miss mama though. especially at night. I’d  set in her closet and arrange all her high healed shoes so they matched and were  lined up just right.  I left her messages’  using her lipstick , I’d write on her mirror,  I love you , wake me up when you get home..  We shared the same bedroom , and had 2 little beds in there. one for each of us.  We had 3 bedrooms , but daddy slept in one , and my sister in the other . So we shared the big bedroom with the bathroom . I didn’t mind it, as long as she woke me up when she got home.  I guess all those long hours at work payed off bacause it wasn’t long before she was driving a fancy new car !  It was royal blue and had a white convertible top . It was pretty but it gave her a lot of trouble, 1966 chevy impalawe were constantly taking it to the Chevrolet dealership. All the salesmen sure were nice to mama. Especially one of them.  Tommy was his name and he was nice to me too.  He made sure mama’s car was running good and would take us out to lunch too. I liked Tommy he was nice.  Mama appreciated his help so much that she cooked dinner , which was rare, and invited him over to eat. Daddy at one end of the table and Tommy setting by me and mama. I couldn’t  help but notice daddy had that all so familiar look on his face. Like he was deep in thought , glaring out into space. What could be wrong,  I wondered. I thought it was great , mama home to cook, and our friend Tommy there… but that look on daddy’s face worried me. I’d see it so many times before.  It was clear that daddy didn’t like it much, but as always, he never said anything to her about it. So I figured he got over whatever it was ..  but old habits die hard.  And this time he went too far.

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