Friday, October 28, 2016

One Is Silver And the Other Gold

It was a beautiful September afternoon “way up in the country” in the backwoods of Smith County. Jay and Claudia Mae McIntosh Arender had opened their beautiful home in Polkville, MS to yet another reunion of the THS Class of 1959. 

I rode up to the reunion with Johnny and Carolyn Mims Barr (and enjoyed the trip almost as much as the reunion). I hadn’t realized how large Smith County really is … square miles. ‘Course, we do live on the bottom end and Polkville is almost to Scott County.

The Arenders own the Music Barn in Polkville, and about four times each year they host a week long Bluegrass Festival. The Class of ’59 reunion (which is held every year) is scheduled to coincide with the Festival. The Music Barn is just that – a barn.  The spacious open-air facility, with a stage and sound equipment for performers, will accommodate several hundred people.  

Where do all these people stay? you ask. In Polkville? No, Polkville hasn’t built any lodging facilities. But the Arenders do have an RV Campground – adjacent to the Music Barn. Quite enterprising, I’d say. There were campers of every type – big elaborate, expensive buses, motor homes, fifth wheels, pop ups, pull behinds, Class C (camper is attached to a pickup truck), and tents.  

Claudia Mae McIntosh was Miss THS back in 1959 and a graduate of that class. Her family owned the old Melroy Theatre which has been purchased by Steve Bruntlett and his wife, Melissa, who have remodeled it and she now has her Accounting firm there.

Back about 1952-53, I attended school at THS …..or maybe it would have been TES. Our family lived in Taylorsville between our years in Columbia, MS and Louise, MS. I developed friendships then, and in the summers during my high school years, when I would spend time with my Granny on Fellowship Road, and my Aunt Mary and Uncle Ray who owned the Philco Store in town.

Then came marriage and family and very few trips back to Taylorsville, so friendships made in those early years weren’t forgotten…..they just fell by the wayside. 

In 1994, my husband Bob and I were in Fellowship Cemetery cleaning up my mother’s fresh grave when Joe Carl Smith approached me and asked “are you Sarah Walker?”  From that year forward, I began to be included in the reunion of the Class of 1959 – it didn’t matter that I hadn’t graduated with them.

This year was no exception once again I was invited to attend the annual get together of this class that has been out of school for 57 years! This time, I attended – and I couldn’t have been happier that I did. There were those faces, from all those years ago – all those people with whom I had been friends. They were still friends. They still remembered me, and I remembered them.

There were so many I hadn’t seen, in all those years. What a wonderful rush of emotion and excitement to see (and hug) someone that you considered a dear friend – all those years ago.

Yep, it was such a wonderful afternoon “way up in the country.” Good food, good friends, and wonderful hosts – our lives were full of so many blessings. Perfect day.

 I was reminded of that old saying…….”Make New Friends, but Keep the old, one is Silver and the Other Gold.”
#Classof1959 #THS #TES #PolkvilleMS #ArenderMusicBarn #TaylorsvilleMS #57Years
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