Maternal Kin, Photographs, Virginia

Speaking of Aunt Julia …

Here she is.

ImagePretty much the way I remember her, though this photograph probably dates from the mid to late 1950s, ten to fifteen years before I knew her.  Her hair was always in pincurls behind the ears with a curly fluff of bang bunched up front. She always wore cotton print dresses, often with a bibbed apron. Her skin was a uniform pale, pale yellow, marshmallow soft on cheeks and upper arms, and smelling of … what? Powder? Faint perfume? My memory fails me; my mother will know.

I spent much of a summer with her when I was two, which I don’t at all recall but later Aunt Julia told me this: It is lunch time, and she has placed a biscuit on a plate before me, and as she bustles about to serve Uncle Bobby, I lay my cheek on this tiny warm pillow and fall straight into sleep.

My grandfather died long before I was born, and of his sisters and brother who lived into my childhood, she was the only one I knew. The return home from every visit to my grandmother in Newport News began with a slight jog to the left, a turn down Marshall Avenue to see Aunt Julia before we got on the road.

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2 thoughts on “Speaking of Aunt Julia …

  1. Pingback: Where we worked: barbers and hairdressers. | Scuffalong: Genealogy.

  2. Pingback: The notebook in the shed. | Scuffalong: Genealogy.

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