Occasionally, I get a compelling urge to express myself openly, and it won't go away until it's satisfied. Hence, this letter, that has two strong feelings. One pro and one con…the pro first.
On our way back home one Sunday afternoon in August of 1944, my husband and I had to stop in Brewton because of a severe rainstorm. It was the first time either of us had ever been here. We parked at a gas station where the downtown wire fence is now.
As we waited for the rain to stop I noticed the sad looking Old Lovelace Hotel across the street near the Bank of Brewton. Water was flowing in all the empty streets and there was not a soul to be seen. Then came my famous last words, "This is the ugliest place in the whole world. I wouldn't live here under any circumstances." Less than two months later we moved to Brewton, and have been here ever since.
I'm happy to say the town has changed and so has my opinion of it. Some of the buildings that weren't here in 1944 are new schoolhouses, J.D. Community College, YMCA, D.W. McMillan Hospital, new courthouse, city jail, nursing home, library, excellent banks, boardwalk shopping facilities, nice funeral homes (one built and operated by my husband for nearly half a century), attractive Brewton Message Center, a lovely and well kept park and now a second one in the making. One of the one hundred best towns in the U.S.A. indeed.
I've enjoyed the hanging baskets, and more recently the beautiful boxes of colorful mixed flowers, placed at vantage points in the downtown area. Much of the beauty of Brewton has come as a result of the planning and hard work of the Brewton Beautification Committee, which is composed of the following members: Joe Gordy (Chairman), Dr. Bob Hayes, Pat Peace, Stella Clark, Catherine Fountain, Sammy Weaver, Randy Cannon, Patsy Althauser and Sherry Martin (who just recently resigned).
I obtained this list from the Chamber of Commerce and I hope no one was omitted. Cheers and thanks to these people who deserve so much credit for giving of their time and talent. Wouldn't it be great if the litterbugs would cooperate?
Now for the con…
I am absolutely appalled and embarrassed over the moral decline and radical change in the dress habits of our present generation, and indeed, the near nudity of the feminine sex. This is so evident not only on television by the so called elite of our society, but also by others closer to home. Whatever happened to modesty and a bit of mystique? Both of these characteristics I found to be drawing cards to the opposite sex in my "hey-day."
To illustrate my point of moral decline, and how far the pendulum has swung to the left, I remember on one occasion. my mother-in-law telling me of how incensed she was when her then fiance whispered to her that her petticoat was showing. She thought him to be completely out of line mentioning ladies apparel before they were married. Speaking of changes and generation gap. Wow.
Our moral standards and dress codes, though lowered too much in my opinion, have not been fully abolished, and perhaps some changes will come before they have reached the state of obsolescence.
P. S. I am fortunate to have a precious friendship with a teenage girl from a prominent family here in Brewton. She has just finished her freshman year in college. I discussed this letter with her and she gave me a "thumbs up," agreeing with everything I said. So maybe I'm not an "old fogey" after all.