Thursday, October 13, 2011


My baby brother recently turned sixteen. I was old enough to go ahead with all of the work while Mom had the regular six weeks of rest after he was born.

It was an interesting challenge trying to juggle all the housework on my own and on top of that take care of all the customers that came to our store.  I don't remember most of them since everything was ordinary enough as they wandered through the showroom trying to decide how to order their own unique custom made furniture or quilts.

There is one though that remains burned in my memory. One Saturday afternoon a young college student came to the store. He seemed very ill at ease as he pulled out a half finished quilt top from a garbage bag. His Grandma had passed away before she had completed it and he really wanted the quilt and wondered if we could finish it for him. He was blushing and stammering the whole while and I couldn't help but feel sorry for him as I looked at everything and told him what it would cost to finish sewing the top and then getting it quilted.

He agreed to the price and I was jotting down all the details when he reached out to tuck some of the quilt patches back  was not at all what he had intended to do as he hastily withdrew his handinto the bag. For some reason I thought he wanted to shake hands to seal the agreement or something so I shook his hand.

It was then that I realized it was not at all what he had intended to do as he withdrew his hand as if I had just loaded him with germs and went hurrying out the door with a beet red face. I could have sunk through the floor myself.

Once the quilt was done we called him but he never did come to pick it up. And for the longest time I was sure that it was my fault because I had embarrassed him too badly.


  1. Seems like he was already embarrassed and jittery in the first place, and he may not have come back no matter what...

    What happened to the quilt afterwards?

  2. As I'm sure you know, some men - especially younger ones - are not at all at ease with emotions. He may have been embarrassed about his feelings for his grandmother, or not comfortable with physical contact.

    And then again - I used to work in a doctor's office, and we had one young patient who could have asked a girl out on a first date with more grace than he scheduled a visit for a bad cold.

    People are just odd, sometimes. Everyone but me and thee, of course!

  3. It is strange if his grandmother meant so much to him why he never came back for the quilt. How sad he gave up such a memory.
    Mrs. J.

  4. Perhaps he just wanted somebody to finish the quilt so that his grandmother's last work wouldn't go to waste and couldn't really afford the cost.
    I wonder if he ever thinks of it?

  5. How odd. I have a habit of shaking hands with anyone I do business with. Must have been your beauty knocked him off his game. A pretty girl can foul a mans mind, you know. Especially one that is exotic. If he wasn't Amish you certainly would have fallen into that category.
    What happened to the quilt ?

  6. How odd. What did happen to the quilt? Of course, I'm not over "the regular six weeks of rest" sentence. Wow, that would have been wonderful after my third!! I was so grateful for the four days in the hospital -- and my daughter only spent less than one; had her daughter early Monday morning, was at her son's T-ball game that afternoon. Changing times!!


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