It was funny that she continued to see herself as that 'little cotton picker from the south', when most of the public only experienced her as the glamorous and sultry, 'femme fatale'.
She never picked cotton again, but she was always the most comfortable with her hands in the dirt, growing her own vegetables and flowers. That's how I was raised, eating our own, organically grown food.
I grew up in Beverly Hills, but to my mother, it didn't make a difference if we lived there or the hills of Tennessee. "They aren't making any more land." She would state. "We need to respect it, nurture it and feed from it, as nature intended." I would spend hours with her in the garden. And while my mother picked the romaine lettuce, collard greens, tomatoes and cabbages, I was catching ladybugs, watching snails crawl and conquering imaginary lands. Anything at all would spark my creativity. A stone became a jewel. A flower, a magic wand. And my mother would watch me out of the corner of her eye, listening to my discussions with all the creatures great and small. If hunger struck, I would simply head over to the carrot patch, search for the perfect specimen, reach down and pull up a ready to eat snack, rub off the dirt and rinse it under the hose. Off I would go, to my next adventure with my portable treat, green tops dangling from my mouth as I crunched away. Bugs Bunny would have been proud.
I know my mother was.
What We Remember. What We Treasure. What We Love. Simply... Eartha.