Friday, August 15, 2008

Our Neighbor

Mrs. Etta Barkley died night before last. She lived two houses down from us (west) on the same side of the street, and had lived there, I believe one of her daughters said, since 1963. There was one other family who had lived in that house before her and her family. There are eight children, numerous grandchildren, friends. They had moved here from Pennsylvania when Halstead put the plant in across the highway. Paul and I walked down to give our condolences yesterday evening, then I took some things back for them to use, that I got at Wal-Mart. We met one of the daughters whom we had not met before and she is so outgoing, as they all are. She and one of her sisters could be twins, they look so much alike. I think there are three families now, including me and Paul, who live in the Village who were there when we moved there in January, 1974. Amy was six weeks old. Mrs. Barkley's is one of two two-story houses in the Village. Joe lives in the other next to us on the east side.

In recent months Mrs. Barkley couldn't get out and was confined to her home and a wheelchair but she would watch people go by her house. Several times when Paul or I would be walking Oscar, she would peck on the window or front door glass if we didn't look that way - and always wave at us.

We will miss her. I wonder if the family will keep the home. There was always someone there to visit, see about her, gather with other family. They really cared for their mother. We'll also miss seeing all the cars there and how they used to sit outside and visit. There is a stand of some kind of lilies in her front yard that mark the seasons, and they've just stopped blooming. Now they'll die back, absorbing next year's growth from the flags and hopefully be back as pretty as ever next year. When I see them or drive by I'll think of Mrs. Etta and remember a fine lady.

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