Do you have a Guardian Angel, or do you have a mysterious messenger who taps you on the shoulder every now and then? Have you been visited by a loved one who wants to reassure your troubled heart? Maybe you feel your Angel around you at all times. I’d be willing to bet you haven’t done what these three sisters do. They invite their Angel Mom to go on road trips with them.
These trips have become a tradition for Karen, Kim, and Tammy. They take their Mom, Bonna along when they hit the road together. I know for sure that Bonna would love the idea. It’s so her. I can see and hear her laughing right now. She had a laugh that went all the way to her pigeon toes. You’ve heard of belly laughs. Bonna had an unforgettable whole body cackle. Her sisters Roni and Norma were blessed with the same contagious laugh. I loved it.
Bonna’s sisters Roni and Norma are standing. I believe the lady sitting might be another sister. You can almost hear their laughter in this picture.
Bonna didn’t walk, she leaned forward a little bit and half ran whether she was in the house or outside. When I think of Bonna, I picture her in long shorts rolled up to just above the knee, a white sleeveless blouse and white Keds. I’m remembering her from when I was a kid who loved to spend time with the Lindquists. We called it babysitting, but I was having fun. I was older than Karen, Kim, and Tammy, and totally responsible and trustworthy, but I was still a kid.
Wait!! Who is John? I must have copied the wrong picture. I swear I have one that says Happy Birthday Mary. Roni’s daughter, Glenda is the girl behind the sign.
Top pic: Stephanie Miller, Karen and I dressed up for Easter..Karen visiting me at the Chalet Motel.
Karen, Kim, and Tammy’s Angel…
When Karen sent me some photos of their recent road trip, she told me they always take their mom, Bonna’s tennis shoes with them. She said about ten minutes into the drive, they look at the shoes and they have turned inward exactly like they did when Bonna wore them.
It’s funny. I’m sitting here writing, and I’m saying, “What should I say now Bonna? She’s telling me to put the picture Karen sent me of her shoes in next. She wants to see if they’re really pigeon-toed.
I can hear Bonna laugh.
“I see you upgraded to Nikes. What next Bonna?” I ask.
“Tell me about my girls,” she says. We’re in the car now and she’s in the back, but she’s got her arms on the back of the seat, and her head is next to mine, while she talks into my ear.
“Well Bonna, you would be so proud of all three of them. They’re what you would call..good, hard-working people.. They treated me like a Queen when I was in Murdo last summer. Remember your house down from where Tammy lives now? They arranged for me to stay there.”
“I know all that Meary.” (That’s how Bonna said my name.) Maybe it was more like Mairy.) “I watched the whole time you were there. Did Loretta ever tell you about the time we left Karen home when she was just a couple of weeks old? We got to her house and she said, Where is the baby?”
“Yes she told me that story many times. It was Mom’s kind of story. She said you jumped up and said, “Oh my God, We forgot the baby.” Mom said you just weren’t used to having her around yet.” (She’s cackling again.)
“You really liked my brother Billy didn’t you Bonna?” I said.
“Yes..I loved Billy. He made fun of me when we all went to the Ft. Pierre horse races. I always bet $2.00 to show. He said I was never going to win big money that way. I told him I got to collect more times than he did, and I always won enough money to keep me in peanuts and stuff to drink. We met him in Las Vegas for a few days a long time ago. On the third day, he asked me how some old guy I hardly even knew was doing? I said, Billy..if we’re down to talking about that guy, it’s time for me to go home.” (Bonna is cackling again.)
Bonna and I had a really nice visit today girls. She loved the picture of the three of you peeking through the cardboard cutouts. I love it too. I understand why you take Bonna’s shoes with you on your trips. I’m so glad you told me about that Karen. It gave me a chance to go back in time for a little bit and remember those days that were so special. The days when she was one of the food swap ladies who traded their leftovers with each other. The days Billy had to run from our house to yours, then to Kitty Reynold’s, and on to Aunt Elna’s to exchange the covered dishes.
“Yes,” she said. “Once, he gave us all our own dishes back a week later. We each thought we were the only one to get our own dish back and that no one liked our cooking. I always cooked goulash. We didn’t speak to each other for a week.”
When the Methodist Youth Fellowship auctioned the teenagers off to be slaves for a day, Bonna was always the highest bidder for me. When my friends all had to wash windows and clean houses, I got to hang out with you three and just have fun.
Thanks girls, for letting me borrow your Angel and your story. I love you all..always have, and always will.
By the way, I asked Karen who keeps the shoes between trips. She said, “The baby..Tammy.”