Aunt Mary Was A MeanieAunt Many was a blt of a religious fanatic...always with the roasary beads and novenas. She never married and was really my Mother's aunt...my Grandmother's sister. When Aunt Mary came to visit, we all suffered. It was a small apartment with my folks and 2 young kids...not really enough room for visitors. I never saw her smile. Twice she tried to burn the house down...everyone said it was an accident...or that she was losing it... to my young eyes she did it on purpose.
Yep Aunt Mary had a mean streak. It dominated her personality. From the age of 3 and my earliest memories of her, I sure didin't like her, Aunt Mary always came visiting with money...$10 for my brother and $1 for me.....as much as she didn't like me, she loved my brother. And being a kid he rose to the occasion. The more my brother acted up the more Aunt Mary praised him and the more she blamed me...Aunt Mary was quite a liar..." I saw Frito hit him!" "Frito started it." My exasperated Mother didn't care who started it...she just wanted it to stop cause Mom already had her hands full dealing with Aunt Mary....taking her to visit with the prients, taking her to religious shrines, getting the family up early to pray the roasary...all this piety and then taking whacks at me when my folks weren't looking.
Aunt Mary lived with us for a few miserable years. She floated through the tiny apartment in a black nighty, often declaring she was dying and needed the priest. My father would be dispatched to get one and invariabally she would make a miraculous recovery . After the 2nd fire she went into a religious home she picked out. Every Sunday for 6 years we would ride 2 buses over 50 minutes to visit her. Aunt Mary was never happy to see us. It was my job to find her...and I knew just where to go...I'd find her on her knees in church, probably praying for the sinners in her family.
When I was 9 I refused to visit her ever again. It was the emancipation of Frito. The home had called and said she might not live through Christmas. My Dad was working on Christmas Day, my Mom was sick and in bed so my brother and I were given her wrapped present and sent by bus to deliver it. .My brother, being older and much wiser sent me in alone to face her...The nuns grimly led me to her room, and there she pulled herself up and screamed...."get out ...get out...I don't want you...where's your Mother...wheres's your brother? get out of here now" Quite a performance for an old lady on her deathbed.
I won't lie. At first I was traumatized...cried all the way home on the bus. And no one made me visit her for a long timne.
Aunt Mary lived several more years and I spent my time at that home talking with much kinder souls. There were some wonderful elderly folks there and we actually like each other.