By Vicki Scott
Well, it finally happened.
I noticed some activity over at my neighbor’s house across the slough from us on Lake Martin in Dadeville. To be honest, my husband Alan and I have an innocent obsession with our neighbor’s house since it belongs to William Lee Golden’s sister, Lanette. When I met her, I did not know who William Lee Golden of the Oakridge Boys was. When I saw him walking down our road, I thought he was a member of ZZ Top.
A few years later, I spotted a long-bearded man in a restaurant and mistakenly thought it was my neighbor’s brother, but it was not. As my luck would have it, it was a neighbor, but he was not related to Lanette.
Following an Oakridge Boys concert or a William Lee Golden concert, we look for the lights on at our house of obsession. During one of those times the look-a-like neighbor came and visited us. Alan said Lanette sold that house and that I needed to give up.
For my birthday earlier this year, Alan bought tickets to see the Goldens, and we noticed the lights on at the neighbors before the concert. Doubtful, I spotted Lanette at the concert and spoke with her. She told me to visit the house when I saw the lights on. Right after the conversation, I called my friend and mentor Pat Hill, the director of the George Wallace Senior Center in Glencoe. She told me to calm down or I would have a heart attack.
A few months passed. While on the phone with one of my shut-in seniors, I shared my “innocent obsession,” and she said she was related to the Goldens. She went on to explain her kinship with this multitalented family, and I became lost in the details. A short time after that conversation, the shut-in senior fell and broke her arm in three places. She then fell again soon after, breaking her hip and ending up with a long stay in the hospital.
A short time later, Alan noticed Lanette sweeping her lakeside porch steps and asked me if I thought it was really her. I told him it had to be her because a renter would not be cleaning like she was. Our son Joseph eventually arrived, and he and Alan started cleaning out a toolbox. I was going to watch them, but our dog Sandy, the border collie that looks like a yellow lab, kept barking at me to take her for a walk. I figured I had some time before our daughter Eva and her crew came by, and I could not take any more of the barking.
As we walked around the circle toward the roadside of Lanette’s house, I told myself that I would stop if I saw a white Cadillac Escalade. I indeed saw one with Lanette inside, so I stopped. I am so honored that Lanette remembers me. We moved to Glencoe 10 years ago and have been back three years. It had been that long since we saw each other. She has an amazing memory. She did not realize that I did not know her famous brother all those times when I stopped and talked to her when I rode by in my car.
When I explained to Lanette how I did not know her brother and how we had members of the Golden family in our church, she told me how she was related to people in Reeltown. She told me that and her family recently visited graves of relatives in Reeltown, which sparked the memory of the conversation I had with my shut-in senior. When I told Lanette about her, she asked me if the lady was still alive, I told her that she was but that she was in the hospital. Lanette told me to call her when the senior shut-in gets out of the hospital, because she wanted to meet her. I was so excited!
Lanette’s granddaughter soon came in after chasing her Chinese Pug back home and apologized for her dog chasing my dog off. Being afraid that my daughter had already arrived and assuming the toolbox was cleaned out by that time, I cut the visit shorter at an hour and a half.
Upon arriving home, I saw Sandy in the driveway and Alan and Joseph still cleaning out the toolbox. There was no sign of Eva and her crew. It was almost like time stood still for the duration of my visit with that precious lady Lanette. Joseph had asked Alan if I should have been home by then, and Alan said I was already in the house because Sandy was in the driveway. Joseph asked if I would not have said something on my way in (which I would have), Alan said “no.” I thought to myself and told them, “y’all didn’t even miss me.” Alan looked over at me and said, “You went to see her, didn’t you?”
He knows me, for sure.