Miss Rosalie…

Miss Rosalie was in my Nana’s Sunday School class. Which, of course, meant that she knew me. One day, I told Nana that I had somehow come across a pomegranate, and that I liked them. Well, Miss Rosalie mentioned one day in Sunday School that her pomegranate tree was in bloom. So, of course Nana asked if she would bring me a pomegranate when the fruit came in. I knew Miss Rosalie was a hardy soul. She walked to church every week. Granted it was only a few boulevard blocks, but she always walked. She was a cute, little bitty thing who lived in this neat, little brick home on “the boulevard.” In the 70’s, the time of my pomegranate story, the Boulevard had fallen on hard times. Most of the homes had or we’re beginning to wrinkle and sag like their owners. Some no longer housed the most  upstanding. But Miss Rosalie paid no never mind to that and refused many a church lady’s offer of a ride and walked on…”Kept her healthy,” she contended. Well, of course, Miss Rosalie brought me a pomegranate. I had never seen an actual tree, much less the actual tree my pomegranate came from. So Mama and I drove by Miss Rosalie’s after church one day. I was thinking of a bush like tree, so was Mama, based on any pomegranate tree she had ever seen. But it was a giant, surely planted along the new Boulevard in 1910 or so. We so hoped my fruit had dropped down from one of the  high branches that seemed to hold my pomegranate’s brothers and sisters. The next week at church we asked Miss Rosalie about her tree, how long it had been in her yard, etc. “Do you have many more pomegranates falling right now?” we asked. “Falling?” They don’t fall ’til they are near gone bad,” she offered to our ignorance. “Miss Rosalie, how did you reach Kim’s pomegranate?” my Mama pressed. “Don’t you worry about that…I get ’em all the time. Besides, since that good one was sort of high, I made sister hold the ladder for me.” Obviously, her walking was working for her…Miss Rosalie climbed a ladder way up that pomegranate tree for me…People did lots of crazy, kind stuff for me, like it was nothing…right regular. We calculated later that Miss Rosalie had been … she would not let on exactly…ninety-six at the time.

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