Hat Lady

#hats #beauty #stylish

Visions of swimming in the pond, tadpoles, and trail rides filled my daydreams as I rode the bus home from school. One more week, and it was time for summer vacation.

The bus hit a pothole and my head knocked against the window. “Ow!” I leaned away from it and bumped into one girl sharing my seat. “Sorry. It’s so crowded with three of us smashed in here.”

“It’s not MY fault.” The older girl, Brandy, flipped her shiny hair and stuck up her chin. “The bus driver told us to grab a seat.”

I turned my back to her and swung my legs back and forth. Maybe if I lean against the window, I won’t bonk into it. Moving hills held scattered pine and oak trees. The movement mesmerized me, and the dirt and gravel shoulder of the road blurred. The bus down shifted when the figure of a woman dressed in white with a white hat flashed past. Mama! I straightened for a better look. The bus pulled to a stop for the first of only two stoplights in our town.

Carolyn, my friend sitting behind me, exclaimed, “Hey, isn’t that your mama walking out there?” Everyone raised up and looked out the windows.

“Yea, that’s Mama.” I pushed my face against the glass, the better to see her with. “She always walks, she doesn’t drive.”

Murmurs increased, with lots of oohs. Someone asked, “Your mama is the hat lady?”

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Somebody else said, “I always see her. I wondered who she was.”

For the first time, I realized how my mother looked to others. I heard, “She’s beautiful,” and “She’s always dressed so pretty.”

Our bus moved on and picked up speed. Mama went out of sight.

The girl next to me had admiration in her eyes, “That’s your mama? I wish my mama looked like that.”

Our town’s “hat lady” was MY mama. But what they didn’t know, was my Mama’s inside beauty exceeded her outside beauty.

(*This new hat was made by my new granddaughter. She was so excited to give it to Mom).

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