I'M THANKFUL FOR … by Barbara Biddison
It's time to make a list again. I had a birthday a day ago, and Thanksgiving is coming soon. So, I spent some time thinking about how fortunate I am that I get to be old.
When I was 11 we moved to south Texas where my parents began a new venture and opened Flavor Isle, and I spent time after school and on weekends singing with my mother in this ice cream shop. We harmonized.
I was never part of the "popular" group of girls, but I had a few really good friends. A couple of them lived just down the street from me, and they (sisters) had horses and rode them. They also had a pet bird that flew freely around the house. Another was also my debate partner. Yet another had older brothers which I didn't have, and I loved being part of their family too. So, there were good times even though this Minnesota girl didn't understand 90 degrees on Christmas Day! Wellsboro life began for my family (husband and sons) in 1969. At last, familiar winters!
Fast forward to now. I get to be old enough to have adult sons and their wives and to have grandchildren, and to have them actually want to visit a few times a year. (And to NOT have them live ",right next door," thus being able to admire how they have found their own
lives which they live admirable well.)
Thirty-some years ago I found Hamilton-Gibson as it was just beginning. And I am old enough to have seen its growth and its connection to the community where I live. In 1993 I was present for the beginnings of the HG youth choirs as children performed in "I Never Saw Another Butterfly." I saw "Driving Miss Daisy" in '95. and HG has not so far been able to cast that play since then--we've tried! I saw the first "You Can't Take It With You" and the first "Quilters" in 1998. And in 2000 I was one of 3 sisters in "Goodbye Howard," an hour-long one-act. I think 2001 was the first time for HG and the Red Garter Review. My first year to act in a full-length regular play was 2005 in which Thomas played "The Foreigner" in the play by that name. We were still in the Don Gill all-purpose room then for all "mainstage shows." In 2007 HG toured a children's show, "Once Upon a Shoe," in which I was Mother Goose and my husband was Mr. Smith, and the touring 8 children played children for 30 performances on gym floors and cafeteria rooms in surrounding counties.
I've been cast in lotsa plays, and there are no favorites. Except the “Our Town/Laramie Project” combination. Most of us were cast in both and we alternated shows night after night in a 3/4 round arrangement that has since become something else. That's probably a good place to stop this ramble There are many things that have become something else! It is good that they were what they were when they were that. And I'm thankful for now, and here comes Thanksgiving!