There's rosemary, that's for remembrance.
William Shakespeare: Hamlet, Prince of Denmark



Monday, June 18, 2007

Smile for the camera




I do know who these two women are.....the one on the left was my mother's best childhood friend and lived next door to my mom in a row house in Portsmouth, Virginia. The woman on the right is the friend's mother. If ever there was a picture that captured my memory of an older Italian woman this is it. When I was a kid and attended Italian gatherings this is what I saw; a heavy-set older woman in a house dress usually with an apron over it and a tissue stuck in the pocket.....if it was a formal get together...a wedding, a baptism, St. Joseph's Table....they would be dressed in black. Their shoes? In this picture I would bet on slippers...dressed up...black tie up shoes. Notice the roll garters.....I can remember watching my mother put on nylons using them...the nylons had seams and she would lick her fingers as she pulled them up so they didn't snag.

14 comments:

Rhea said...

In the Italian section of Boston, you always see women in black dresses leaning out the windows.

gina said...

I guess being California Italians made Grandma different. She did wear an apron, but almost never a housedress. And she was busty, but not fat in the belly at all. She had a very hourglass figure. But Grandpa - you know that scene in The Godfather where Marlon Brando is out putzing in his garden in his white shirt and brown pants, playing with his grandson when he has the heart attack? THAT was Grandpa. White shirt over white t-shirt, buttoned all the way up, brown trousers with a belt, brown leather shoes, like men's dress shoes. Every day of his life that I can recall. When it was really, really hot, he'd wear a short sleeved shirt. I only remember once ever seeing him in a tank top type undershirt, and that was at the beach. I do remember Grandma wearing the roll up garters.

Auld Hat said...

Momma mia but I do love that couch! Is that fringe on the bottom? Oh I hope it's fringe.

kenju said...

Ha! My mom and grandma always wore housedresses and often aprons - and they aren't Italian!

Tracey said...

LOL...I remember scenes that looked just like that, only mine were German ladies in aprons! I think they were always afrid the camera was going to capture their soul, as no one ever looked very happy to have their picture taken!

Lorraine said...

These photos are classic, Rosie, especially accompanied by your remembrances. Better than Proust.

Mom said...

What a great picture! It reminds me of my cousin Cleta Mae and her mom Ophelia - both good Texas women.

jan said...

I remember dresses like that on my grandmother and she was German.

Sling said...

I enjoy these photo walks down memory lane that you do!
lol @ Tracey..from my experience,that's how German ladies look when they're happy..

Lilli & Nevada said...

Yup, i remember my grandmother that way as well, and if you look real close on that photo, you can see part of the nylons, which usually were knee highs, Or am i imagining that?Yes my family is all from Germany and still live there. Oh i should share photos of old days, what a great idea

jp said...

Reminds me of my grandma on mom's side, roll-ups and all. I can almost smell her house again.

Too bad they're not wearing hats, though.

Violet said...

great picture. as all great pictures should, it tells a story... i wonder what they were talking about?

utenzi said...

Ummm. Interesting picture, Rosemary. I'm not sure it's safe to say anything more.

Chandler said...

I love when you post pictures, this is wonderful. And does that trick really keep you from snagging nylons?