Hi, I'm Elizabeth Scanlon Thomas (everyone knew me as 'Tizzy' when I lived in Natchez). Thank you, Casey Ann, for asking me to contribute to this blog. I grew up in Natchez but moved away when I was 12 and still miss the place so much. I married an Englishman and live outside London now, but still pine for Southern food, friends and the azaleas in bloom in the springtime in Natchez.
Here's one of my memories of growing up in Natchez:
One of my mother's favourite things was teaching Sunday school to first graders at Trinity Episcopal Church in Natchez. She would let me re-arrange the felt figures on the board after she had taught a lesson so I could make Job sit in the sky, for example, or whatever I wanted the Biblical characters to do.
When I was old enough to be in her class, I felt so grown up. I had perfect attendance, but so did another girl. That was a problem for Mom because she got to select the cast for the Nativity play at Christmas, and every girl wanted to be Mary.
My mother thought and thought about it, and finally she decided that she would give the role to her daughter, even if everyone thought it was complete nepotism. I was thrilled with her choice. I wore her light blue silk bathrobe and used my cherished Thumbelina doll as the baby Jesus.
It was one of those perfect childhood moments I had the day I was Mary in the Nativity. But do you know that my mother felt a bit guilty about that, even after all those years? She would say, as if to re-assure herself, "but you were my daughter, after all, and you had been to every lesson...."