This is a photo of my Grandma, my Mom and my Aunt. I'm guessing it was taken around 1939.
I don't know much about my maternal grandmother. I've always had the feeling that my mother's family lived in another dimension. My mother was raised with absolutely no street smarts whatsoever. Sometimes, I think she would have lived longer if she had had a little more of an edge to her.
When my mom described her childhood, it was as if she grew-up in an old movie. All the girls were named Patsy and Betsy and they had sewing clubs and the worst swear they ever said, was "road apple". My mom told us that on Saturday nights she and her family would act out plays or play charades. I can't even imagine that world, but I remember being jealous of the stability and security of her former life.
Once when I was nine, my neighbor told one of my friends that I didn't have a dad. I was so pissed-off that I told him, "Yes, I do too have a dad. What do you think my mom did, fucked a tree?"
My middle sister ran home and ratted me out. I was horrified, of course, because I knew my mom didn't swear (okay, when she was really mad, she said, "Damnit to hell!") and hated vulgarity. I felt a little protective of her, but I think in some ways she was glad I was tougher and overly sassy. According to my oldest sister, my mom had to wait a few minutes to stop laughing before she called me in to punish me.