Wednesday, June 27, 2007

"Little Switzerland"

 
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West Virginia is a beautiful state...it is called "little Switzerland" as it has the Appalachian Mountains running through the state. The roads and interstates curve...they are NOT straight...it is one of the few places you can get car sick on the interstate because of the curves!

This picture was taken by my aunt. It is across from the graveyard where her parents are buried(my grandparents). She took this out the car window when she was there with my mom. Tallmansville is a very small town in northeast West Virginia.....it is the site of the terrible mine disaster cave-in that killed 12 last year....
When I was a little girl, mom would take us out to visit her grandmother(my great grandmother :o))in the "country". It truly was the country..no indoor plumbing...I have used the outhouse with the Sears and Roebuck catalog as the toilet paper...and with the words ringing in my ears "watch out for copperheads" gag.....snakes I don't do ...especially poisonous ones...so my sister and I would yell all the way to the outhouse hoping to scare any and all snakes, animals and other things away....trust me when I tell you that we REALLY had to go to the bathroom when we did this....at night..if you were unlucky enough to get to spend the night..you had chamber pots under the bed to use....sounds good...until you realize that you are responsible for emptying it in the outhouse the next morning....when it is cool and the snakes are more likely to be resting near the warmth.....for 2 girls who were born in the '50s this was like stepping back into the previous century....we never did figure out why the 2 of us were so lucky and our oldest sister never had the pleasure of an overnight visit ....we think is was she had a louder voice and a cousin closer to her age that she would go and stay with!!
My younger sister and I have a lot of memories of this little town... it was fun to go but more fun to come back to civilization....TV, running water, bikes, telephones not on a party line, cars, town...you get my drift! But when we tell these stories it is hard for people to believe that we experienced what we did.....as even in the '60s, it seemed unusual not to have some of the amenities one gets used to...Looking back now, it was comparable to abject poverty but no one felt that way...we were always welcomed with food and love and as much as we dreaded sleeping over.....we loved to go and visit.

6 comments:

Joshua said...

It's so nice for me to have found this blog of yours, it's so interesting. I sure hope and wish that you take courage enough to pay me a visit in my PALAVROSSAVRVS REX!, and plus get some surprise. My blog is also so cool! Don't think for a minute that my invitation is spam and I'm a spammer. I'm only searching for a public that may like or love what I write.

Feel free off course to comment as you wish and remember: don't take it wrong, don't think that this visitation I make is a matter of more audiences for my own blogg. No. It's a matter of making universal, realy universal, all this question of bloggs, all the essential causes that bring us all together.

I think it's to UNITE MANKIND that we became bloggers! Don't see language as an obstacle but as a challenge and think for a minute if I and the rest of the world are not expecting something like a broad cumplicity. Remenber that pictures talk also. Open your heart and come along!!!!!

GR8UMPS3 said...

So don't forget to tell a few stories about the other half of that part of the country. The life style. sitting in the grand room watchin movies that are on at the drive in theater.

Drive-In chili hot dogs yum!

Wish I had some now.

Liz said...

Neva, I remember what you wrote about in WV. I was 10 years old when we moved there and really saw the hill people (we knew even back then not to use the politcially incorrect term for those folks)who, literally, had no shoes. It was third world, but your grandma's house sounds like my great-aunt Bobbie's house in rural Wisconsin who used to baby-sit for me. I rmemeber the out house, too, but I don't think there were the poisonous snakes in rural Wisonsin.
Here in Arizona that description would be the way people lived on the reservations before legalized gambling, which only very recent. You still people living in shacks on some parts of the reservation not far away from the mansions-that-gamling-built. I don't look back on any of that with nostaglia. It was brutal.

Lori said...

I've never been to West Virginia but I hear it is lovely. I like your story about visiting there. Thank goodness we have indoor plumbing now!

WDM Mommy said...

LOVE IT! I hope you have documented your visits and memories in far more detail for future generations :)
LOVE IT!

tanidia said...

Nah it wasn't the louder voice it was they were worried what I would do if they left me there. I'm pretty sure I would hsve been beyond pissed considering I wouldn't go to the outhouse except under duress and the chamber pot was totally out of the question. Too nasty for me to even think about. Loved my great grandmother hated the conditions