From Eagle Mountain Lake, we come back to Copperhead Hill and take a walk around. Back in the 1950s-1970s, the area was pretty much ours. There were
2 other houses around the hill…one of the houses was the one where my aunt (my dad’s sister lived). She was (and still is) very special. She was a professional singer in her day. She had beautiful porcelain skin and platinum blond hair. She would come over in the mornings and have breakfast with us. Her favorite breakfast meal was oatmeal and a Coke! One of my goals as a little girl was to grow my hair long enough to wear it in a pony tail like my Aunt Betsy. It seemed like it took forever, but the day finally came when it got long enough to pull back and fasten into a “little tiny” pony tail, about 2 inches long. Wow, was I ever excited!!! We have home movies of my aunt playing with my pony tail and I looked sooooo proud!
At the other end of the hill, there was another house, which was built in such a way that the roof of the house was the same level as the hill. We had to walk down some steps to get to their front door. The people that lived there were friends of Grand mama’s and Grand papa’s. They were a couple that we called “Mammaw”, “Daddy-O” and their daughter Jo. (Are those some country names, or what!) Mammaw and Daddy-O seemed really old to me at that time in my life. I think Jo was probably in her 40’s or 50’s but I really enjoyed visiting with her because I could tell that she liked me and treated me like she really enjoyed visiting with me. You know how you have that sense of friendship with someone right away? That’s how I felt about Jo. I’m not sure how long they lived…I don’t remember seeing them anymore by the time I became a teenager, but we always enjoyed our visits with them.
One of my favorite events during our visits with the grandparents was Grandmama’s “organ concerts”. She had an organ in the living room that she would play when we went to visit. After one of her incomparable country dinners, we would all gather in the living room and she would sit down at that organ. I don’t remember her having any music books…she played everything by ear. She had a very unique style of playing that was very entertaining. She had very long, hard fingernails which she always had painted with “fire engine red” nail polish. When she would play, her fingernails would click against the organ keys…it was such a cool thing to listen to. After each song, we would all applaud and she would turn to us, take a bow and say, “thank you, thank you”, let out a little chuckle and play some more. We all loved it and I know she did, too…we could have listened to her all night. After a little while, it was time for us to get ready for bed. When it was “lights out” we would all settle in for the night. I don’t remember if they had air conditioning or not. Living in Fort Worth, it didn’t get as hot there as it does in Houston, but they would open up the screened-in windows at night (don’t worry, it was very safe). As we were falling asleep, we could hear the very memorable and relaxing sound of the little crickets and frogs chirping outside. Still, to this day, every time I hear that sound, I go back in my memories to those wonderful days at “the ranch” in Fort Worth.