1947 The Year of the Pig

It was the day of Grandma. It was the year of the pig. Hardly a member of my family alive remembers that infamous day and year. According to the Chinese Calendar, it was the year of the pig. Near the end of Spring, I was nearly four years old. I was old enough to see and remember, yet young enough not to care.
Jackie Robinson made headlines. He was a national hero. Blacks worshiped him, Whites had to like him, in spite of the fact he was colored. He was a hero for all people of all creeds and colors. Jackie Robinson was an American hero. The grandson of a slave was America’s claim to fame for the entire world.
At that time I was visiting my grandmother in Mt. Vernon, Illinois. She lived on a quiet street in the city, yet I can remember her fenced in chickens in her backyard. Each morning it was my duty to feed the chickens. That was a duty I did not take lightly. Before I fed them, I brought them a sermon. The chickens would stop clucking and I imagined they were listening. I had a captivated audience. It’s true! They were a captivated audience. Where could they go?
When the Dodgers were playing, my grandmother made me sit quietly as she listened intently to her radio. I comb my doll’s hair and wondered why baseball was so important to grandma. She would shout, he’s at the bat! Whenever there was a home run, grandma would do a little jig. I thought that was pretty cool. I thought it was time for me to get up and dance too. However, the game was not over. I was told to sit down and be quiet.
1949 was the year of the ox. I started first grade. My grandmother and a woman by the name of Ruth Kelly came to Huntsville, Alabama for a visit. Ruth had taken care of me since birth. She stepped right up and continued her duties because my mother was sick. Granny took care of the other three children. A woman having a great deal of influence in the church said there were too many people in the church’s house. The house belonged to the church so Ruth moved out. Granny stayed the entire summer until mother felt well. Granny continued to favor Jackie Robinson.
Before I entered first grade, Daddy bought a face TV, It was about 17″wide and 17″ tall. It looked nothing like our neighbors (the Lowery’s TV) who had a TV so big it had to sit on the floor. Ours’ sat on a potbelly coal stove on top of a dolly my mother made. In the winter, it sat on a table by the window.
During the year of the ox, Huntley and Brinkley did a wrap up of that day’s daily news, weather, entertainment and sports. Granny would still do her jig when they reported how Jackie Robinson had done. When I started school, during Black History Week, I told the class about Granny’s happy dance whenever Jackie Robinson scored.
Now it is 2015, the year of the goat. Birmingham, Alabama was visited by the Shen Yun 2015 Performing Arts. Granny would have cheered for them as well. They were great!
Granny’s life meant a lot to me. A great man once said:
“A life is not important except in the impact it has on other lives.”
Jackie Robinson
In my book, you may be gone but not forgotten, neither Granny nor Jackie’

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