26 March 2013

I think it was back in 1972

It was a Spring day. We were still in school. I was in seventh grade. My friend Donald insisted we ride our bikes over. "You've got to meet Mama Jo." Cindi I knew from school, but I'd not met her mom. Off we rode and I was kind of shy - I mean, why would I go meet Cindi's mom? Cindi and I didn't even get along that well! It was the start of a long, long friendship, though. Donald was right. She was something else.

Unlike so many adults: she actually seemed interested in what we thought. She talked and laughed and before long I was hanging out at the house whether Donald was along or not. The friendship grew and deepened.  I often hitched a ride with Jo and Dave down to T.A.G. (Take and Give - a huge Charismatic prayer meeting in D.C. on Tuesday evenings). We'd squeeze a boatload of kids into a small Volkswagen and off we'd go.

With hormones popping, Jo was nonchalant and funny. "Hand check!" she'd shout out and we'd have to show that our hands were not where they had no business being.  She and Dave did the youth group at their church for a while. Lots of fun times. I remember one winter's day spent at the toboggan run in Potomac with them.

The first real trip away from my parents that I ever recall, they took me with them to Jesus 77 down in Orlando, Florida. Sometime around then we started a Wednesday night study group at their house (or at a friend's - Patty Brown's) and we just studied and prayed and sang. I began playing piano for that gathering and doing some occasional teaching of the Scriptures. I shudder to think what I must have taught back then!

But the Word of God was a great discovery for us all - and many, many was the night that Jo and I would sit up till the wee hours of the morning talking about God, about His Word. She loved her Lord and she loved to teach.

Memories just cluster right now. The trip to Prince Edward Island (and David walloping her upside the head with the rock - "Hey, grandma! Watch me throw this!" - THUD and her dropping Sandy's camcorder into the sound!)... Fun days with Dave's whole crew at the Purple Pad in Ocean City... Times together at Bethany Beech... Visits to North Carolina and later to Illinois... Finally, them moving out here. We were SOOOOOOO excited to have them close by.

Even with the health problems that plagued her, her spirit didn't flag until these last years. And even then FEISTY is an understatement to describe our Jo, especially when she was winning at cards. So obnoxious the way she'd rub it in!  Oh, we're going to miss her at cards so much.

Can't write more now, but just wanted to put up something about this wonderful woman that I was privileged to know as my friend for over 40 years...this crazy woman who would befriend a bunch of teenagers and teach us about the Lord. Thank you, Mama Jo, for everything...

1 comment:

George said...

Beautiful and blessed memories. The peace of Christ be with Cindi, you, & all your family, Will.

"Christ is risen from the dead,
Trampling down death by death,
And upon those in the tombs
Bestowing life!"