By Vicki Scott
June 14 marked the first day back at George Wallace Senior Center. Pat Hill, who is our director, allowed me to join in the fellowship and play bingo. It might have taken some begging, but I was willing. It was so exciting to see everyone and introduce them to our oldest grandchild, sweet Ava Jaymes.
Pat asked me to run the 12:30 bingo game, and I could not wait. It was announcement time as Ava Jaymes and I walked through center’s door, and I was blessed with the honors. The folks at the center might have been happy to see me, but Ava drew all the attention. She did so well in distributing red, silver and blue beads and helping me call the bingo game. Ava’s parents should be proud at how well she behaved. Some folks wanted to take her home, but we had other plans.
Ava Jaymes asked when she would be able to visit again, and Pat told her that she was welcome back anytime.
Being that it was the first time we had Ava Jaymes in the Glencoe area, we had to show her around. One of the center’s seniors gave Ava some money and told her to buy some ice cream at Chick-fil-A, so that was our next stop. We’ve always enjoyed Chick-fil-A, and this day was even better with Ava.
After eating, we went to Noccalula Falls, where Ava had to ride the train. Ava and my husband Alan then decided to walk the trail under the falls to the suspension bridge while I sat on a bench and waited for them. Ava Jaymes loves to hike and seems to get frustrated when her Nana can’t keep up, but I’m working on it. I praise God that I’m down to one swollen ankle!
A few days before our trip to Glencoe, Alan, Ava and I walked on a trail by our lake house in Dadeville that leads to a place in the woods where one can find golf balls. Ava stepped over a snake on the way. Acting like it was no big deal, she told me to watch out for that snake. Due to my distress at the situation, we turned around and went back. Ava was very mad at me. The snake in question was not poisonous, but in my eyes, there probably were other snakes around that were. When grandchildren are around, my anxiety grows exponentially.
Hunting golf balls is a fond memory for our children. When I told Ava’s dad (our son Joseph) what happened, he let me know that Alan – who said nothing the during the entire time Ava when was mad at me on the walk back – had stepped over a rattlesnake on that same trail. It was colder then, and Joseph thinks the snake was dormant, as it did not move.
I don’t think Ava was too upset, since she “sweated hard” and enjoyed both hikes. I know that was true, because I sweated hard as well. It was so hot.
I enjoyed riding the bench. I wound up giving directions to several people, although I’m not sure if they were correct.
We visited the Anniston Museum of Natural History the next day. I‘m a big fan of the place and have been there many times. I had so much fun explaining everything I knew to Ava Jaymes, who seemed to be soaking everything in. We checked back on the displays from time to time to make sure she did not miss a thing. Ava is at the perfect age for us to do things like this. And the look on her face is priceless when she learns or sees something new.
After the museum, we went traveled back to the lake house and settled in, hoping that our darling grandchild would rest a while before she had to get ready for softball practice.
That was a bust. Ava was still excited, and Papa was as well. They practiced some softball to kill some time before she was picked up by Yai-Yai, her other grandmother.
It came as no surprise that of all the places we visited, the George Wallace Senior Center was the only place Ava Jaymes asked to go back to. She had so much fun, and her Nana and Papa did, too. Until next time!