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Thursday, May 10, 2007

1973

Today is a beautiful and sunny day. Almost too perfect. Not too hot, low humidity, white fluffy clouds in the sky. This afternoon rain is forecast, so there's that.

I am having another one of those days. It seems I am having a week of them. You know that feeling as if the weight of the world is on your shoulders? Yeah, that one. I don't know why the feeling strikes as it does sometimes. Maybe it is a form of depression. I suspect the hormonal changes stuff.

Last night as I was trying to get sleepy enough to go to bed, I watched the last of an old Dick Cavett show. Remember him? It was a re-broadcast from 1973. The year of my high school graduation. His guest was Katherine Hepburn. I love her. She is one of my all time favorites. Not too long ago, I read a really good biography of her life written by a young man who was treated like a nephew by her and was quite close to her in her last years. Then, after the show, the station ran "Holiday" with Hepburn and Cary Grant, circa 1938. I enjoyed some of it before I finally nodded off.

I love those old movies. I love old Hollywood.

1973. Quite the year for me. I graduated from high school after only one semester of Senior year. My family moved from Shreveport to Atlanta the summer between my Junior and Senior years so my high school credits exceeded what was needed in Georgia to graduate. I waited for my diploma until May with the rest of the class. I went to work at K-Mart in January and worked part-time until it was time to start college in August.

Pulling up roots and moving just before my Senior year was the perfect opportunity for major drama in our home. I have two sisters, both younger. The next in the sibling line is only 16 months younger than me so we were in this thing together. Our youngest sister is 7 years younger than me so it wasn't such a life alternating for her.

Our move was due to a transfer in the career of our father. He was a vice-president for a distillery with the head offices in Boston. We lived in Shreveport for most of my life, up until then, and he traveled from home to wherever his sales meetings were for the upcoming week. His territory was the southeast but he traveled all over the country and occasionally overseas. He left on Monday mornings, with my mother taking him to the airport after taking us to school, then we would pick him up at the airport on Friday evenings. Usually he traveled 3 out of 4 weeks a month. He had a home office where he could work if he was home.

The company wanted to expand their market's territory and wanted my father to open up an office in Atlanta. They originally wanted him to go to the new offices opening up in Miami but my mother refused to move to Miami. So, Atlanta it was.

Big city. Big opportunities. My parents were always generous with us to include us on as much of their traveling as possible, school calendars and activities dictating our lives. My grandmother lived with us a good part of the time so she was the babysitter. Plus my mother had household help so she was free to travel with our father whenever the opportunity arose. Most of their trips were business related.

Our family trips were mostly during summer vacations, as it was with most families. My father always took 2 weeks in August before school re-started and we would pile in the car and go. Sometimes we drove to Indiana to visit family, sometimes it was to event kind of vacations. We went to HemisFair in San Antonio one summer. We went to some conventions, too, like to St. Simon's Island in Georgia where the business gathering was made into a family friendly event so that the men wouldn't have to leave the family at home.

When we moved to Georgia, we settled in a suburb. Roswell, Georgia. Now it is huge and congested. Then it was woods and dirt roads. Quite literally almost a one stop light kind of place. We joined Peachtree Presbyterian Church, 'in town' in the city and now I see Sunday services are televised here. Weird.

New starts. New beginnings.

9 comments:

c.a. Marks said...

WOW! What prompted that post? Not that I minded, I enjoyed reading a little more about you! I love the old movies too and I've been having some of "those" days too. Just can't seem to get out of the ho-hum blahs.

Jennifer said...

Our move to Raleigh was dictated by my husband's job, too. And it came in my daughter's senior year of high school. He moved down here, lived in an apartment Mon-Fri, and drove back to Richmond every weekend, for seven months. When graduation was behind us, the rest of us moved, and the rest is history.

Either way, it's hard, those life changing/defining moments.

Beverly said...

Oh my, I imagine that was hard to move in your senior year. I had the opportunity to graduate with those with whom I had attended kindergarten.

Those days do come and go. A little sadness, a little melancholy, retrospect. I guess it helps us understand what makes us tick. And it does come at the strangest moments, doesn't it.

Wordnerd said...

Wow, Karen. This post hit pretty darn close to home. My husband's home, anyway. His family moved to Atlanta in 1969 and he and his two sisters grew up there. And they all attended Peachtree Presbyterian! Were you there when Rev. White was pastor? Hubby graduated high school in '76, but sisters graduated in '72 & '74. I know it's a huge church (and city), but wouldn't it be cool...

MissMeliss said...

Hello, Michele sent me. It's interesting, isn't it, how something like a rebroadcast television show or movie can spark mental time travel?

sophie said...

My Sweetheart grew up in Shreveport and I believe he would have graduated HS in '74. I grew up in Atlanta and never moved until I was 40--talk about major change. I'm visiting randomly from Michele's.

AC said...

My dad refused a transfer to St. Louis in the summer between my junior and senior years. I know at the time I would have been or acted miserable, but looking back the move would probably have done wonders for me. As it is now and even back then in '72. when I moved away for college, I never went back and saw none of my high school associates after graduation.

I enjoyed the bio too. Chapter 2?

colleen said...

Yes, the world is more gone mad since then, for sure. I get nostaligic too and wonder where it's all going. Your dad worked in Boston, but you never lived there? Always the south?

srp said...

It is hard to move in high school. We moved from Indiana to Pennsylvania after my freshman year. In Indiana the 9th grade was the first year of high school with all the "lowest on the totem pole" thing going on. In Pennsylvania the 9th grade was still in middle school. Sophomores were the lowest rung on the ladder in high school. That was difficult to take... two years in a row!