Friday, February 26, 2010

Pookie's Place, Part IV

This beautiful porch, swing, American flag and hedgerow belong to a lady I visited with last weekend, Miss Pookie.

Mathews Mark probably had no idea that a one-hour visit with his mother could turn into forty days and forty nights such a long series of blog posts. In fact, when he said he wanted to schedule another tour (of his friend's old store) the same day as the meeting with Pookie, I started to stress, because I knew for sure this one visit would generate a year's week's worth of blog posts, and each place deserves the proper time and focus attention.

The bottom line is I can over analyze talk the heck out of something that most people would otherwise skate right through. And when I say talk I mean write because in person I won't say two words. On paper I can't stop. But this is not about me
, it's about Miss Pookie's house, which was built in 1915.

The light fixture pictured above hangs in Miss Pookie's dining room. Her grandfather spied it hanging in a bar an establishment in Norfolk, back in the days when the waterways were the roads and there was practically an interstate freeway seaway between Norfolk, Mathews and Baltimore and various ports in between. He purchased the fixture and carefully cradled it in a blanket for the potentially rough boat ride home to Gwynn's Island. From the dock he carried the fragile fixture on a horse and buggy to its final destination here in the dining room.

One of the first things Pookie said after, "Come on in, there's no such thing as company in this house, everybody come on in and sit wherever you like," was "That fixture in the dining room? It will never, ever leave this house." Then she relayed the details of its magnificent journey from Norfolk to Gwynn's Island. "My sister and I decided a long time ago that if we ever sell this house, that fixture stays. It belongs here."

Pookie also said that Son Mathews Mountain Man once scrambled atop the dining room table and began fervently dusting off the fixture thinking it might be a Tiffany. He didn't find any conclusive evidence, but you never know.

Either way, it's priceless.

A person could spend an entire day with Pookie in her dining room and never get around to talking about the history of each piece on display. This particular picture caught my eye, it's a beach house from her native South Carolina. She mentioned that during one hot, sweltering summer, she put Mathews Mark's playpen underneath this house for shade.

Remember playpens?

That's Mathews Mark there in the background probably wondering why on Earth any human being would take a picture of another picture.

That's because he didn't know it was really a picture of another picture held by a woman telling a story, while the sun bounced off the mirror, which hangs over a mantelpiece, which adorns a gorgeous fireplace, with a firescreen that says RUSKAY across the front, representing a very unique blending of two names. (Deep breath due to lengthy sentence.) The mirror reflects a sunlit window draped in lace curtains, behind the photographer, as Mathews Mark looks in another direction.

See what I mean about over analyzing? See?

Yesterday I promised a post about light fixtures, tractors, strangers in the night and playpens. We can check off light fixtures and playpens; tomorrow we'll cover the tractors, and a hedgerow. The strangers in the night will be covered another day, it's a post in and of itself.

There are many treasures in this house, and they're all wonderful people.

Can you think of a treasure or a sentimental item that is meaningful to you or your family?


Grandma J said...

I don't know what I like the most...the porch swing, lamp or picture! I love Pookie's Place!

Ann Marie said...

Grandma J forgot to mention MM in her list of things she wasn't sure of what she liked more..
So I vote for MM.

I got something new coming by my favorite UPS guy today.. yes I know I work for USPS but this UPS guy is the best.. he is the Doug of UPS guys love him! Hope I love what I got.

I need to see you.. like in one piece at one place..

Happy Friday Friend!

WV ahing... I need to get off of this page cause all I am doing is ahing the photos...

Meg @ Soup Is Not A Finger Food said...

After my grandma died, it was a scream going through her house to dig through all the things and divide them up. That farm and house had been in our family for generations... it was sad selling it, but there's a nice family with young kids who lives there now, so that makes it OK in my mind. That old brick farmhouse is meant to be enjoyed.

One particular treasure of hers that I have is an antique washstand that sits in my foyer. When my grandma had kids at home, this piece was in my dad's bedroom, and for some reason he decided it would be fun to carve his initials into the top of it. (Boys!) He finished the L and got part way through the B before she busted him. She made sure to give me this stand while she was still alive, I think because she wanted to make sure that I was the one who ended up with it - and so she could experience me appreciating it. And I did, and I do.

Country Girl said...

I love the story about the lamp shade, CBW. And what is wrong about taking pictures of pictures? I did it this week and I'll continue to do it. I have an old ring of my father's. He gave it to me before he died. It was his most prized possession when he was a young man, his class ring from high school. It's in my jewelry box.

Mathews Mark said...

CBW once again I am humbled by your great writings and wonderful pictures There is so much I could add, but it is 39 in this house and my ass is froze to the couch.Not to mention it is hard to type with gloves on! what my Mrs. Pookie did not tell you, I was a bit of and escape artist in my younger days and it wasn't a playpen it was a spring line she put around my waist and tied to the pilings of the old beach house. It was a thin rope about 20 feet long. I would get running and when i got to the end of the rope BAM it would pop me right back under the house. Did I mentioned I had to were this a lot anytime she took me with her My leash came along. Playpen Ha I could get out of that in 30 seconds. Did anyone else have a people leash or was it just me. Now a days you would get lock up if you used one! MM

Mathews Mark said...

please excuse the spelling But my hands are froze (and I forgot my glasses) MM

Mental P Mama said...

Wait! I wanna hear more about the playpen under the house! Did the tide come in? Did MM learn to swim that day? Did they forget about him? Okay...back to the story. That house is wonderful, and I hope they never sell it!

Linda said...

A picture of another picture held by a woman telling a story, while the sun bounced off the mirror, which hangs over a mantelpiece, which adorns a gorgeous fireplace, with a firescreen that says RUSKAY across the front, representing a very unique blending of two names.
Just WOW. That photo alone is worth 10,000 words. Wow.

Mathews Mark said...

Oh and by the way no one is getting their hands on that lamp but Me or MMM. TRUST ME!!!goes with the house my ass I will hang it up at hardee's before I let it get out of the family chain!! MM

Daryl said...

Love that lamp .. and the porch, flag and hedges ..

I have a lot of 'treasures' that belonged to my parents, I think I dont have a favorite but there's stil a whole carton that hasnrt been unpacked and I am sure my sister will be reminding me .. again

WV: inmacyb .. well you'll need to come to NY to in macy b

Meg @ Soup Is Not A Finger Food said...

OK, now I am picturing Mark like Mike Myers' SNL character Phillip the Hyper Boy - he wore a helmet and was tethered to the playset by a bouncy cord! I'm sure it wasn't anything like that, though...

Noe Noe Girl...A Queen of all Trades. said...

Love the house and love the swing on the porch. Brings back memories of me and my Granny swinging on her porch while we snapped beans. Gosh I miss her. And that lamp..I love too. Can't wait for you to see the one in my kitchen that Cdubs dad made. It's black and white stained glass. Beautiful!
I miss him too.
Love you CBW.
Do we get plooted if we drink too much wine!

Ann Marie said...

do I have to teach Noe Noe Girl everything...

Plooted as in "PPEEEEEUUUUUU who Plooted??!!??"

betsykk said...

Meg were did. you think they got that skit from.MM

Breezeway said...

Oh YAY!!! Now I know who owns my favorite house on Gwynns Island!!!! I always wanted to buy that house. Love Victorians and LOVE LOVE LOVE that porch! Thanks for sharing!!!!!

big hair envy said...

I'm convinced that Mrs. Pookie needs her own tv show. The heck with Martha, WE WANT POOKIE!!!

That lamp is a jewel in and of itself, but the story just makes it shine brighter!!

mmm said...

Imagine Poppa (98 years old) trimming the hedge around his (and Pookie's) house. He did last summer, but don't know that he will this summer - gettin right feeble, you know.

Nice pictures CBW.

Hey bro.

Meg @ Soup Is Not A Finger Food said...

Betsy - from SNL! Back in the day. Couldn't find a video to link... Nicole Kiddman was the host.

MMM - I had a beer with my 99 year old uncle on his birthday! Unfortunately, he didn't make it to 100, but I figured there's not many people in this world who can say they drank with a 99 year old man on his birthday.

Meg @ Soup Is Not A Finger Food said...

Oh, that's not a betsy, it's Mark! What the...? Anyway - now it makes sense, of COURSE you were Mike Myers' inspiration!

Ann Marie said...

Came back to view life in mathews in mega tron size... WOW.. ALL I CAN SAY IS WOW

WV Cusin... JV i know we ain't really sister so maybe are a cusins??

Mrs F with 4 said...

MM looks as if he has regressed to about 7 years old in that picture..." Ohhh MOOOOOmmmmmmm, do you HAVE to..."

What's precious and sentimental in my house? Well, I do have quite a bit of my Grandmama's antique furniture (which in turn had been her parents etc), and quite a few of Grandpapa's tools, but really? Upset as I would be if something happened to them, nothing, but NOTHING compares to my children.

Despite my two-year old daughter developing little horn buds under her hair....