When we arrived we were greeted with warm hugs and plenty of love. Aunt Ruby always had fresh fried chicken cooking for us with plenty of side dishes. We sat at her table and ate until we were stuffed. While all the adults talked and laughed with one another over the remnants of lunch, my brother and I would sneak out to the yard to investigate the surroundings.
Aunt Ruby always had cats about and I was very interested in catching one or two. She also had the neatest plants growing all around her yard. I would love to look at them all. She had some that grew these little peppers and I thought they were so cute. Once she gave my mother a cutting and also let me choose which plant I wanted a cutting from, I choose the Wandering Jew and so did my sister.
Sometimes after dinner we would go to town and shop in the mall. Since it was a college town there was a large mall and plenty of shops. Then we would come back and sit on the porch and talk some more. Aunt Ruby was all about family and our heritage. She knew the Saucier history and I was always willing to listen. I loved her stories. She is one of the people I credit in gifting me with a passion for genealogy. I would write down all she told me. In later years she gave my father a very large compilation of Saucier history, which I treasure still.
My favorite part of the trip was the night time. That is when the fire flies came out. Aunt Ruby always had a jar for us and we would catch those fireflies and put them in the jar. We would spend hours with our little glow friends. Fireflies were one of the casualties of Hurricane Camille for us on the coast. They never came back. So, it was a glorious treat for us to see them like this.
Whenever I see a firefly today, I am always transported back in time to those carefree Tuscaloosa nights.