Tuesday, October 28, 2008

She Whistled

She was willowy and elegant and tanned--exotic. I thought she looked like a Paris model, and unlike the women in my family, she whistled.

I was a little girl and I watched her from a distance, as she moved gracefully around her yard, hanging clothes on the line or gardening. She didn't know I was there.... well, I wasn't actually there next to her; I was playing in my own yard, but I could see and hear her whistling and humming her show tunes.

I picked up one of my old books last week and there in the margin was a note to myself, "Dorothy taught me how to whistle." I hadn't thought of it in years, but the inscription instantly brought back the childhood memory of a mesmerized child and the dream of learning to produce the same magical, musical notes from my own lips.

One day, long ago, she took me aside and patiently taught me to produce those delightful bird-like sounds. From that day forward, I became a whistler just like her. It's brightened many dark days and added music where there may have been none.

The memory reminds me that we may never know who's watching us and the difference we have made, good or bad, in the lives we touch.

***Has someone "special" touched your life and made a difference?



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18 comments:

Joanne said...

Music touches my life often, shining its light like a star. All types of music, and thank you for sharing that whistling is music, too.

Janna Qualman said...

Barbara, I loved reading of this memory of yours. You depicted so well her impression upon the childhood you, and I could picture her on the other side of a fence, working in her garden and the like. Great post.

When I was an early-teen, a favorite aunt ever-so-delicately told me no one likes complainers. I needed to hear it then. And now I think twice (and think of her) if I find myself complaining too much. It really helped shape who I am. :)

Lea and her Mustangs said...

My Grandmother was the most VIP in my life. She taught me the old hymns of the church. She told me I was special. My other Grandma is who instilled in me my love of horses. They are both long stories but bring wonderful memories.

Barbara said...

Joanne- Music is a BIG part of my life, too. It touches all the emotions.

Barbara said...

Janna- Your aunt was very wise to give you that advice. She must have been a nice person.

Barbara said...

Lea- What wonderful legacies they left you!!

Angie Ledbetter said...

What a great reminder. Never know who's watching and learning. I think it's neat you kept notes along the journey too.

Barbara said...

Angie- I've learned that someone could be watching our actions and perhaps imitating and that we are role models to many along the way.

Jeannette said...

It is amazing what we learn from others that they never know about and what others learn from us.

Terri Tiffany said...

This story was beautful. What a sweet memory.
My daughter's babysitter "Aunt Barb" made the biggest difference in my life. She showed me how to witness to others through her day to day life, she encouraged me as a new mother, and she lives her life only for God.

KKJD1 said...

What a wondeful post. You made me feel like I was there in the yard with you. My hubby would love to hear that whistling is music cause he whistles all the time but says he cant carry a tune in a bucket. I will be sure to let him in on the music thing tonight when he gets home. Have a great day. Blessings, Karen

Patty H. said...

I have never been able to whistle. Love to hear it tho.

Pat's Place said...

I loved reading about this special person in your life. I have included in my book the story of a special aunt who added a bit of interest to our lives because she was a bit unusual. Nice memories!

Barbara said...

Pat-We meet so many interesting people throughout life. It's a good idea to keep a written record.

Barbara said...

Jeannette- It sure keeps us on our toes!!

Barbara said...

Terri- "lives her life only for God"...I like that.

Barbara said...

Karen- Encourage your husband. I think whistling means he's happy and has joy.

Barbara said...

Patty- It think it was in the story of Snow White where they said "whistle while you work." Good advice.