I absolutely adore this photograph. I think the little black girl is expressing with her look what the rest of us feel. ‘What a joke, honey!’ ‘This is one stupid white man!’ Any who…
Today I attended a glorious celebration of the King Holiday. It was held in my small town. It was produced in way that only a little hamlet like mine can.
First my adorable friend Dianna Berge’-Wrinkle and I bundled up against the unnaturally arctic Georgia weather to attend the sort of service and proclamation that local leaders give on the court house steps. Dianna was a vision in her Russian sable coat and “babushka” type hat. She had to remove it upon entering my Jaguar since as you know there isn’t a lot of head room. I wore my grandfathers wool coat with Astrakhan collar. It literally sweeps the floor…Smashing darlings!
Well we arrived at the historic courthouse built I am told in 1900. It is a beauty it has a gold dome, similar to the Georgia State Capitol. I remember a particularly beautiful but dim acquaintance pointing it out to me upon my arrival here and TELLING me it WAS the state capitol. Ahem er well she mixed a frothy and lethal champagne cocktail(Are there any other kind!?)
Everyone was gathered on the walk leading to the front where the mayor or someone like that had a podium draped with the visage of Dr. King. We had timed our arrival perfectly. As Santos pulled us up to the front of the courthouse we had just enough time to re-adjust Dianna’s chapeau and saunter up to thr front of the crowd. It was a rather eclectic group of people, but we all shared the same frigid conditions and , I don’t know it, well it made me feel as one with the group. I felt we were a bunch of freedom marchers that had traveled up north because as you know the people there were in many instances as prejudiced as those in Mississippi.
As we got to the front of the crowd, some assistant, aide, librarian or something came down from behind the podium and motioned up to two of the seats to the left of it. I needed a seat darling I had attended a cocktail party in Atlanta the night before at 103 West and the little bloody mary pick me ups Dianna and I shared in the car had not gotten me up yet, so to speak. We ascended the steps and sat down. Flattered by the attention but unsure of herself, poor darling, Dianna said we should look like visiting dignitaries. We should act like Princess de Labad does when she comes to America for a visit. The Princess, also known as chou – chou to us, gets real royal when here in the States. So I just squinted haughtily over the crowd as the Prince does(not difficult in my present condition) and Dianna occasionally did a royal wave with the barest half smile.
Not even a second later a gentleman, the mayor we discovered after the incident, came to the podium and began his speech on the Dr. King. I really did try to keep up but with the chill wind blowing all I could really think about was another bloody mary and the delicious luncheon we were going to attend later. I looked over at Dianna and noticed she was looking at the mayor smiling so I looked at him to. Suddenly some jalopy went by and back fired. Well darling people screamed and hit the ground. I had never witnessed a drive by shooting before. Dianna doesn’t like me saying that since it was a back fire and it implies we were in the wrong part of town but I get a giggle out of it.
There was pandemonium and then nervousness in the assemblage, even after the mayor had managed to convince them it was only a malfunctioning automobile. The mood had passed I looked at Dianna and said let’s go.
In the car on our way to the date with our luncheon hostess we had such a laugh. I love holidays!