03 October 2011

Home Sweet Home

Granny, Grandmother Pool, Emily and Mom; around June 1989
Sometimes, you just need to go home.

Now that I don't live there (and am not in high school), the town my parents live in is a lovely place. All of my Mom's family lives there too, so visiting people is really easy. I was having a hard time with school a little while ago- I just didn't want to do it anymore. Mom said to come home for the weekend. Yes ma'am! So, I packed some clothes, my 35mm film camera, and a small portion of my schoolwork with me, because I wanted to visit my high school art teacher while I was home. The ride home was a little erie.

My drive home brings me through the Central Texas Hill Country and into the East Texas Piney Woods. In case you haven't seen it all over the news, Texas is experiencing the worst drought it has seen in 50 years. The Hill Country is usually green, as is East Texas, but my drive looked like Northern Arizona. The scrub oak was all dead and nothing was green. The trees are changing colors, not because it's autumn, but because they're releasing the leaves that they can't support. I guess it was just weird to see East Texas look barren like that. West Texas is always flat and barren, but East Texas is hilly and barren right now.

When I was almost home, I rolled my windows down and let the good East Texas air into my car. It was so refreshing! It smells like pine and dirt. It felt good to be home. The next day, I went to visit my high school art teacher. The classroom looked exactly the same and she was so excited to see me. I was excited that she actually wanted to see my work! She even had some of her AP Studio Art students look at my work to see what they would be doing in college. One of her students asked me if I was a good artist. I wasn't sure what to say to that, so I said yes.

After that, I went to my Granny and Grandad's house. I was just seeing was they were up to, but Granny wanted to see my schoolwork that I had with me. Ok, Granny! This was exactly what I didn't know I needed. Granny and Grandad looked at everything I had with me- even the nudes! Granny rarely gives compliments or reassurance, but she said, "This looks like good work to me." Thank you, Granny. Then, Grandad wanted to show me photos of some relatives. I love looking at these photos.

My Great Grandma Effie was the most beautiful person I have ever seen. I wish I could have met her. In all of the pictures of her, she has this calm confidence about her. She had dark brown hair, porcelain skin and the trademark Jones family blue eyes. She died after my Grandad's younger sister was born. Gdad says it was a complication from childbirth or a brain tumor. So who really knows.

There's something about being with people who know you, being in places that know you and seeing people you're related to. I'm very lucky that most of my family gets along with each other. I find spending time with most of them to be very calming. Even if it's time spent talking about relatives who have long passed.

And when your Granny tells you "good job" it makes you want to go back to school and keep it up.

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