It all starts when we are born, experiences and lessons that shape who we are to become; I began life as a normal sized kid with long black hair that had to be cut by the time I was six weeks old, all the normal stuff happened to me simple things like swallowing nails and cutting myself on everything you can imagine, you all remember doing things like this to your parents, and feeling the need to apologize to them once in a while now for doing some of this stuff, I have heard stories I don’t quite remember and others I just don’t really like to talk about.
“Hickory Tea” is one all the family thinks is funny and I suppose I am old enough now to laugh about it, when I was young it was common to keep what my Mom called a hickory laying around just in case she needed it, a hickory if you were never exposed to one is a switch, hickory switch, or what ever else they may be called, a hickory is a small flexible piece of wood actually a small branch off of a bush or tree, these were just small switches but in our minds as youngsters they were huge and could break a leg with one swing but you know how our minds over exaggerated things back then, hickory switches were used to spank the kids, Mom would give us a taste of the hickory across the back of our legs and we usually got the point with one little taste of the hickory, now before anyone gets carried away I will give you a little disclaimer:
“During the period of time I was growing up, no children including myself were harmed due to tasting a hickory switch even though at the time we thought we were being killed no one actually was and Moms everywhere who properly used this device raised well adjusted kids, my Mom was always proper so I will claim I am adjusted well”
Now back to the story, I was pretty small at the time not in school yet and my brother who is a year younger wasn’t old enough to keep up with me, I was at the neighbors house playing with the kids when Mom came out on the porch and yelled for me to come home, I actually remember telling her No and that I was playing, it probably made me think I looked pretty big in front of the other kids telling her No, well in the very near future I would realize when Mom called I had better come running. Mom had gone back into the house and came back out with my brother on her hip and a hickory in her hand, now I knew what this meant as she just didn’t carry it around just to make her look good, she yelled for me again and my response was just like before No, she came down the steps and called me again, I thought this was pretty funny so it became a game to me, I began going the other direction towards the road and would stop to tell her No when she called my name, I remember laughing and saying No when she called my name, then on one turn she was gone I just knew she had gotten tired of the game and I had won, or so I thought.
Mom comes back out the door but this time she does not have my brother, she asked if I was thirsty, she now had my attention, she asked would you like some Hickory Tea I always did love sweet tea and Mom always had a pitcher made, heck she probably has one made right now, so I told her Yes and she said well meet me in the driveway and I’ll give you some, I probably thought she had some special tea made not knowing that she actually did and just for me, I ran to meet her in the driveway and got a taste of the hickory all the way home, as I said before the next time she called I came running and she didn’t even have to offer Hickory tea.
My youngest sister is eight years younger than me and as the youngest or the baby of the bunch you just know she rarely got spanked, I had flashbacks to my earlier experience when she was in kindergarten and was next door playing with Greg the neighbor boy, Mom had lunch ready and came out on the porch to call her home, I was sitting on the porch swing when Mom called “Melinda come home” and Melinda replied “No I’m playing” Mom goes back into the house and came back holding a hickory behind her back----Now I really don’t have to tell the rest of the story do I? And yes I am grinning right now.