Friday, February 8, 2008

Sick Day

Sick Day
The Land of Counterpane
8.5" x 11"
watercolors
Sick days, when I could stay at home from school, were good days, for the most part, when I was growing up.
Oh sure, the sore throat, runny eyes, sneezing, and fever were not all that fun, but it sure was better than risking going to school and being fussed at or teased, and also bored and wishing that I was at home.
My mother read to me, or I had plenty of comic books, movie magazines, paper dolls, my baby dolls, cats, and my imagination to fill the day. I could look outside my windows to the south and west, from my Jenny Lind bed, through the sheer, ruffled curtains, blowing in a gentle breeze, at the sunny day outside. I could see the swing that Daddy built from railroad ties, and the shed that he built in the back yard to house the pickup truck that he built from wrecked cars, and Poochie, our dog, wandering around. Not to mention time to sleep, listen to the radio, with Mama and neigbors trying to tempt me to eat with special treats they fixed. I wasn't too interested in eating, even when I was well, though.
Toot would bring cold milkshakes, tinted with food coloring, made in her special metal shaker, from across the street. And Pappy would make homemade chicken noodle soup to bring me. I didn't like it too much. I thought it was watery and greasey. I preferred Mama's homemade "poor man's" soup, with just a soup bone, diced onion, can of tomatoes, diced potatoes, and water, or Jello, or even the glasses of tomato juice with crumbled up crackers, salt and pepper, in it.
Mama had read me "The Land of Counterpane" by Robert Louis Stevenson, and told me to imagine places on my covers to play, if I was tired of reading, and getting fussy. (Of course, there was no tv with stories to watch and entertain us back then. And, not a lot to entertain children during the day on the radio.)
Outside, at the edge of town, there were small hills, where the trains would come and go. We could see their lights in the dark of night. The hills seemed to be just beyond the trees outside, but, actually, it was a little further. The trains would rumble through downtown, along Railroad Street, and enter or exit, depending on whether they were going north or south, around a curve and out of town on the north side. That was a bit out of range of our new house.
But, when I was very small, we lived in great-grandpa's house on Railroad Street, I ran to the windows (as soon as I was able to walk) to see every train that passed. My uncle once told me that trains went by every 15 minutes, night and day, as he was very interested in trains too. They didn't come that often when I was older. And, now, they come, but not as often and you can't keep a schedule by them anymore, either.
As I lay in bed, with my Kleenex and things beside me, I could imagine my own little town on the covers. There were corn fields and cotton fields on the hills that were supported by my legs. There were pastures in the flat lands, with little tanks of water, and farm houses with barns. Beyond my feet, there was the Brazos River, with a boat floating down it. (Although that river is not a place for boats!) The train tracks ran over my knees, through the small downtown. Workers lived behind the stores, toward my ankles. My neighborhood, with the school and football field, lay between my legs. I added a couple of stores nearby, which I thought would be nice to have closer to the house and the school. A good place to stop in for a Coke or some ice cream or candy, or new comic books or movie magazines.
Someday, I would change the little town-maybe even turn it into a city with lots of things to do and places to go. But, I would have to think about that after a story or a nap.
I hope you enjoyed my memories of being sick when I was younger. Sometimes, I sure wish that my mama would bring me some of her homemade soup or tomato juice and crackers, or Toot would bring me a cold milk shake in a pretty color, or even that Pappy would bring me some of her homemade chicken noodle soup. They are long gone, and my own food, with their recipes, is just not the same. And, with the flu or some other ailments, it's impossible to cook anyway. Canned tomato soup or a Pop Tart, are all I can manage, at the most.
Sign my Guest Book at the bottom of my page, if you haven't already. And let me know if you see something of interest to you.
Hope that you miss the flu and those ailments this year!

4 comments:

Enzie Shahmiri said...

Hi Cecelia!

You have visited my blog in the past and I wanted to invite you to my One World One Heart free Giveaway.

I am giving away a pen and ink drawing of "Mascarade". Feel free to pass this info on to your friends and good luck!

Trine said...

First I want to thank you for your kind comments on my blog today when my son has pneumonia. He is 19 so it is a bit different from when they are small. It was easier somehow then because a mum knew what to do - and was allowed to do so too. hehehe. It is the care we gave or received in our memories that makes sick days kind of special too in a positive way. I like that you too like me tell a bit about yourself in the blog.

I like to see watercolours among the daily painters because for some reason most work in oils. I vary a lot myself. And that might be something I will have to do also because oils are the least healthy medium to work with.

KarenHarveyCox said...

I was sitting with my list of people who commented on my giveaway for the world-wide giveaway and linking back to the appropriate blog. I wanted to have the names and blogs for the basket, which I will pick a name from. I stopped by, saw the words, and stayed awhile to read. Oh I love your writing and your painting. I remember those sick days and I quite agree with your memories. I believe the best part of this world-wide even is not in the gifts we are all giving away, but in the opportunity to travel into wonderful blogs like yours, which is the real gift.. Karen

CeeCee said...

Hi Cecelia,

I had to stop by and look at your blog, following your comment on mine my nickname. Funny story about how I got my nickname: A few years back, I got to know a bunch of people I had met through the internet. They couldn't pronounce my last name properly since it is French. So they decided to call me by my initials -- C.C. Someone came up with the name CeeCee and it stuck! Even my husband calls me like that.

Your artwork is amazing! I love pencil drawings and yours are beautiful. I will definitely come back more often.

Take care,
CeeCee