From a tape recording interview made on Oct 10 1977 with my grandmother, Eva Caroline (Smith) Cox when she recalled various memories and the following story about her own grandmother Fidella (Porter) Sanders. She wanted to spend the night with her grandparents who lived less than a mile from her house.
Grandmother: “Oh, I don’t know how old I was. But I wanted to go over there and stay all night and they let me go. And I don’t know…I just got so homesick…and I wanted to go home. I had stayed one night. And I thought, well, the next day I’ll go home, but I didn’t go.”
When the next night began to come on, oh, I got so homesick. I began to cry. I could hear them all hollering over there at home …and talking and laughing in the yard. And I said I wanted to go home, and grandma said, “No, you can’t go tonight…cause we have no phone, and you might fall. It’s too late, and there’s a big snow on. I would never know if you got over there or not.”
“Well, I just set into squalling. (Laughs.) But I set to crying…and she finally give up…about dark. And there was a big snow that night…up to your knees. And it was nearly night time, and she couldn’t do nothing with me. But I remember enough that she got a pair of grandpa’s wool socks and pulled them up over my shoes and fixed them where they wouldn’t fall down, and she let me go. Laughing) And there I went. In the snow, walking.”
Jerri: “What did your mother say when you got home?”
“And I come in, and Mother was so surprised. All of them. They had the lights on… lamps… and they hadn’t eaten their supper …they always ate late. And grandpa eat early…about 4:30 in the wintertime. So I had already had my supper. And I really wanted to go home, and I was so happy when I got there. There wasn’t any wind blowing.”
Jerri: “Were you as big as Amy?” (My daughter was about six or seven.)
Grandmother: “Probably was. Probably larger. But I was homesick. And I wanted to go home. I just would not stay that night. I could hear their voices…hear them all talking, carrying in the wood, I guess. I imagined everything. And the more I listened, the more homesick I got.
And it wasn’t but a mile. But they didn’t know. I could have fell and froze to death. And nobody wouldn’t have known it. It’s the wonder my grandmother let me go, but I guess she thought she would have to sit up with me all night.” (Laughing)
“Well, I was going. I had made up my mind. I was homesick. Yes, I was.”
Snowy winter scene – Ohio County, Kentucky
– my grandmother walks home.
Submitted by Janice Cox Brown