When I was in my early twenties, I left the States for southern Africa. For the next three years I didn’t see any of my family.
The only manner of communicating with “old” friends was the old-fashioned-way — by letter. And I wasn’t much of a letter writer.
My mother was a faithful letter writer. She gave me news from “home”, but this news was of a historical type. No idle gossip, such as Betty is a little too friendly with the Catholic boys, or the new pastor’s sermons are too long. These are things that the locals learned by observation, and through conversations.
When I finally returned from southern Africa, my parents showed up to greet me at the airport. I anxiously looked for my parents. Dad was easy to spot, but where was my Mother? For just an instant, I wondered who was the lady with my Dad. Of course, she was my Mother. Even before I left for southern Africa, she had used Lady Clairol to cover her gray locks.
This is not a tid-bit that a mother would be likely to share with a son.