LESSONS IN JUSTICE
Remember, the other day I told you about the spanking I got when I was not much more than a toddler? Well, that one I deserved, because I had disobeyed my mother and had run off to see my Dad at his machine shop. Mom didn't know if I was hurt somewhere and couldn't get home or if something worse had happened to me.
The second and last spanking was when I was twelve, and we were living in Perry. That one I did not deserve! I still, to this day, resent it. Not that the slaps on the derriere I got were all than painful, but my feelings were really hurt.
Grandpa was sick and someone needed to go to the Ardoin's Pharmacy in Abbeville to get some needed medicine. Dad was away, and only Mom and little Jerry and I were at home with Grandpa. Mom asked Mrs. "Ping" Baudoin to bring me into town when she brought her husband to work after noon lunch. I was told that I should get the medicine first, and then I could walk around town and window shop for a while, but I had to be sitting on the cement bench in front of the courthouse across the street from the pharmacy at four o'clock, because Mr. and Mrs. Baudoin were going to pick me up and bring me home when he got off work at five.
I got the medicine and carried it around with me while I looked into various show windows for a couple of hours. I found an old newspaper to read, so by four o'clock I was sitting on that old cement bench in front of the courthouse, reading and waiting for my ride home.
The clock in the church steeple struck five, and and then five-thirty. I realized that the Baudoin's were not going to pick me up, so I started walking home. By the time I got there, it was almost dusk.
Mom met me at the door, took Grandpa's medicine from me and set it down on a table. Then she whacked me a few times on the butt and said, "Don't you ever do that again!" Do what? I did not know that Mrs. Baudoin, when she realized that she had forgotten to pick me up, told Mom that I wasn't waiting in the designated place at the time I was supposed to be, so they had come on home, checking all along the way for any sign of me.
Knowing that my mother thought I was lying hurt more than the punishment. If she ever came to believe that I had told the truth, she never admitted it to me. I surely wish she had.
Copyright © 2001 Aline T. Meaux, Abbeville, LA
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