While I was visiting Ocean Springs, Mississippi, last July, my morning routine underwent some very interesting adjustments. Every morning, Uncle C would call Mom, telling her something designed to check that she was okay and to get her day off to a good start. Frequently, these sallies began with some bit of wisdom dropped from the frozen lips of Murtle, the Turtle, a stone door stop found in Uncle C's house.
Although I was born in Biloxi, right across the bridge on I-10 from Ocean Springs, I always get teased about living up north, as I went north at the tender age of nine months, and have never moved closer than southern Iowa. Cold weather jokes are a running gag in our family.
Sometimes when the phone would ring, if Mom was in the middle of something, she'd tell me to get it.
UC: Murtle the Turtle says, "It's going to be 50 degrees, so bundle up -- break out the long undies.
Not to be outdone, I replied, "Samantha the Snow Goose says, "50 degrees? Bikini weather, everyone!"
Mom, walking into the room with a cup of coffee in her hand, shook her head. "That's crazy -- getting the weather from a stone statue." She walked off, laughing.