There were kids filling the fields all afternoon, she says. I asked what they playing and she replied not football, something that sort of looked like soccer. She wasn't sure, but they were having fun.
Even better, she says, it was more of a family thing. Parents and kids were watching and cheering.
"I think it is so much better for the parents to be involved with their kids. Watch them play. And get their kids involved in good activities. Keep them out of trouble.
" I like to bring my dog out, but everybody wants to pet her. Little kids will run up and ask if they can pet her. Or their parents will ask. I worry when there are so many people around, I don't want someone to get hurt. She acts funny, all of these people around us."
Like a lot of dog owners, she doesn't want to say the word bite.
The weather was nice and that was her Sunday afternoon entertainment. For lunch and dinner, she walked to Subway and got a meatball sub. She divides it up and says she gets five meals out one sub. "They will put all kinds of things on it, if you want." During the week her main meal of the day is delivered via Meals on Wheels. She wishes on Fridays they delivered fixings for another meal on weekends -- but she isn't complaining. She is grateful for the service.
Again, mom talked about the farm house and how she and dad spent their lives fixing it, building and rebuilding it and making it better. "I think I told you their were gas lights when I went there to live.
It was terrible. When Dick was little, every time he got mad, he would throw his Tommy Tippee cup on the floor and break the glass globes. (Back then there was a kitchen upstairs. When Dick threw his cup on the floor it would break the globes of the ceiling lights in the downstairs kitchen). "I would have to go to Dewey Whites (combination food and dry goods mom and pop store in East Olean) for more globes. They were 15 cents each. That was a lot of money then. We had to pay a contractor to come in and dig a tunnel under the railroad tracks for the electric cable, so we could have electricity. They ran it over the tracks (on poles) anyway. Figure that one out."
She drifted back to the kids and families on the sports fields. "I loved playing sports when I was in school. We were poor and never had a car, so I would walk home when we played games after school. We walked everywhere. My parents would walk to the grocery store in the morning and pay for groceries. At noon hour, I would walk to the store pick up the groceries and carry them home. I've always been walking. Good thing I like to walk."
She got a little confused on something dear to her. The time of year. "The weather is nice right now. This past winter, was OK. We didn't get much snow, but it was icy and cold. Now it is getting warm. Spring is coming, isn't it?" I reply, no fall is just around the corner. "What month is this?" It is September, mom and today is Sunday. "I wish so much I could go back down south for the winter."
Mom is looking forward to a visit from my sister Liz later this week. She doesn't remember exactly when she's coming, how long she's staying or the reason for her trip. Doesn't matter so much. she is happy to see Liz, again. Maybe they can go shopping or something. "Liz will have our visit planned," she says.
It was getting close to 7 p.m. -- the time Jim calls her every Sunday -- so I said my goodbyes and promised to call her on Tuesday. She said she was going to write that down. As she was writing, she said, "Now who are you again? Nancy?" I said yes, your daughter Nancy. She giggled and said, "Hey, I knew that. I was kidding you." That is a breakthrough! "You don't know what your calls mean to me." I told her I think I do and that I am thinking about her, all of the time.
"I love you, mom." "I love you, too, dear."