If there’s a freak, a crazy situation, an emergency, an accident, a pervert, a stalker, or any other type of ordeal going on, I am present & typically somehow involved. It has been this way most of my life. In our family, we like to call it a hereditary condition. Weird people love us, strange circumstances find us. I often wonder how this can be so with me being such an old soul with old-fashion values. Yes, I love a smart phone, but more than that, I love hanging out with the elderly, listening to their stories is so much fun to me, I believe in cooking a meat & two vegetables on most nights (not always possible), drying clothes outside is my passion, recycling is too, talking on a landline is wonderful, oldies music is my jam, respecting my elders is a must, reading Mature Living & Country Woman make me smile, watching the birds is a joy. So how is it that a woman with Little House on the Prairie type standards, gets mixed up in crazy??? I was created to be a freak magnet!
I have personally called 911 more than anyone I know due to my last sentence. During the month of December, Ava & I were doing some Christmas shopping at a local store. For about 30 minutes while we were shopping, we heard a lot of noise from one family throughout the store, fussing & carrying on. As we made our way to checkout, this family is also checking out & physically fighting. It was a mother & her son. The situation reminded me a lot of what I’ve been through with Jack, so I was totally sympathetic. The boy wanted a toy & the mother refused, except, the mother was cussing her son out for everything he was worth & they were both hitting each other. She left him in the store while she went to her car. Mother comes back in a few minutes later & starts accusing an employee of touching her child which she did not & cussed her out. I then called 911 because who knew what this woman was capable of. She tried to turn her ordeal around on the clerk who had nothing to do with it. I had my own child to think of. Ava was purely terrified. By the time police arrived, they were gone. This is just one instance of me calling 911. Most are because of accidents at The Berry Patch, someone having a heart attack at our business, situations with Jack. Once, a man started running towards me while I went out to my car one night & ended up beating on the door after I slammed it in his face. Everyone in the house was either asleep or upstairs. I was screaming, I just knew it was a murderer. Turns out he was a drunken man at the wrong house. It had all the makings of a horror movie. Woman goes outside in dark unaware of man lurking on road, he starts chasing her, everyone was asleep & knew nothing about woman’s whereabouts. But I had to call 911 because this man would not leave our porch!
Speaking of being a freak magnet, there was the time Mama, my sister Jodie, & I were shopping at Marshall’s. We were each shopping in different sections, I noticed a strange looking man. This strange looking man brushed my behind, like it was an accident but it clearly wasn’t. I found Mama & Jodie & told them, turns out he did the same to my sister! This is totally a story you would hear about in morons in the news! We found the manager, turns out he was getting his jolly’s on several women in the store. We started chasing him & he ran out of the store. I never knew in my life of oddities that being caressed by a serial “butt toucher” would be in the cards for me!
If you keep up with my blogs, you know that I was raised in the boondocks as city folks would say, I just say the country & what better way to be raised I might add. Where we lived & my parents still live, we were surrounded by government land & really not that far from Fort Bragg, NC Army Base. It was not unusual to see fellas that had been dropped literally from the sky to navigate the country woods around our home. Several soldiers ended up on our doorsteps looking for directions although illegal for them to do, Daddy always gavw them a nudge in the right direction, because that’s what country people do. Any who, I was “laying out” one sunny summer afternoon, for the younger crowd reading this, “laying out” meant getting tan. These were the days you poured Hawaiian Tropic suntan oil with an SPF of 4 on your body & getting a good blistering was good because it settled into a tan. Now I did not “lay out” easily. I was scared to death as it was to be home alone in the country, listening out for every little noise from the road or murderers passing through. I didn’t have to work that afternoon, I had on my bikini, radio on, I was set. About 30 minutes into my tan, a line of soldiers are literally walking a few feet through our backyard-which is connected to the government land. I’d say about 30 soldiers walked through, each getting an eye-full, how embarrassing! I quickly made a run for it & never once did I “lay out” alone again.
Then there was the time I was home alone as a poor latchkey 7th grader child. A common occurrence around the house were low-flying helicopters or airplanes with the soldiers doing maneuvers. On this particular day, a helicopter kept circling the house. Over & over, getting lower each time. This became very concerning to me when on the 10th pass or so, I knew the helicopter was going to land. I called Mama at her job & told her there was a helicopter getting ready to land in the field beside our house. Of course, I was a delusional child was her thinking! My Grandma who lived down the road was elderly, hard of hearing, & didn’t drive & my aunt Dot wasn’t home yet. Mama called Daddy to tell him to come home & see what was going on. I am home alone people & the helicopter (that could not be landing beside our house per Mama) has landed beside our house! Men start getting out, I am quite certain I am under attack & they are coming to get me, a 13 year old. About that time, Daddy pulls up to save the day. They are investigating what he is growing in the pine trees. Daddy at that time farmed chicken houses for former NASCAR driver Benny Parsons, but he always had side jobs & this particular side job that was under a search & seize investigation was azalea growing. He had 100’s of pots of azaleas that he had rooted in pots of a pine tree field & sold to people. The helicopter team picked up on something & decided to take a look, all they found were tiny azaleas & a scared little girl!
All these stories & the many other strange ones that have occurred to me or the innocent ones that feel the ripple of the freak magnet effects just by being associated with me, are fun to look back on now. I’ve learned that attracting stranger things has helped me cope with the madness at home. I’m proud to be a freak magnet, I love it like a moth to a flame!