Easter Finery

Getting "all dressed up" has become something of a lost art (at least it is lost on me). Pantyhose being a fate worse than death, I would much rather be kicked back in jeans and a T-shirt. But back in the 1950's, the annual ritual of being "gussied up" for Easter Sunday was a sacred rite not to be violated. My grandmother Clara had a fierce competition running with the other "church ladies" over who had the best dressed grandchildren at the Easter services - she would start planning our outfits for the next year as soon as the current services were over. Sometimes the dresses were purchased, but more often she spent hours making them herself. You really got the full treatment, too...hat, gloves, purse, multiple petticoats and a corsage. I don't think I have ever been decked out quite like that again, even for proms and weddings! It is even more amazing to see otherwise messy little kids dressed to the nines when those outfits were NOT wrinkle-free or wash-n-wear (and boy did they love to use starch!). From the look on my face it is apparent that I was MUCH happier crawling in the muddy sandbox full of cat poo from the previous blog.....


Looking back, I can see that my taste for down-in-the-dirt adventure started early. Apparently even as a small child I was a girl who wasn't afraid to get her hands dirty (or feet, or face, or clothes or hai......oh wait.....NOT the hair!). Our backyard in Oklahoma made ideal practice grounds for the belly crawling cave explorations in my later years. For this particular training session, I had arrived on my sleek, foot-powered three-wheeler, dressed for action in, well, a dress (I had yet to discovered REI) to hone my mud-mucking skills. It was a mere 55 years later that I was able to put those skills to the test spelunking in Costa Rica with my "Dirty Girls". Although this time around I passed on the tricycle transportation and traded in the plaid dress for expendable work-out clothes, it was otherwise the same crawling face-down on your belly in the mud that I had prepared for so many years before. Unfortunately the open-air backyard training did NOT adequately prepare for the minor differences such as squeezing through pitch black underground crevices the size of say....a coffin; discovering a good part of the "mud" you were slithering through was actually bat guano; that the said bats were actually covering the cave ceiling right over your head; and that the cave walls were also home to spiders the size of your hand.

But other than that it was exactly the same.