After our visit to Loon Lake, Wisconsin, with the Plocher family last week, John and I flew to Knoxville, Tennessee, for a reunion of my Creekmore relations. My mother, Eleanor Creekmore Dickinson, was born and raised at 1007 Circle Park in Knoxville, spending summers at our Elkmont family cabin in the Great Smoky Mountains. My brothers and I and our cousins and friends also spent many happy childhood weeks at the cabin and nearby swimming hole. My brother Mark is the oldest of our generation and I am next – we have a first cousin who is twenty years younger. More Elkmont history and photos are in my Elkmont, Tennesee 2011 blog entry.
It was delightful to get together with my mother and brothers, aunts and uncles, cousins and nieces and nephews. My mother, Mark, Jessica and Matthew met us in Knoxville. Unfortunately, Paul could not come because of final exams at Foothill College. My brother Pete was able to bring his whole family.
We went as a group to see “Dear Lodge” – the Creekmore’s Elkmont Cabin #6, now part of the “Elkmont Emergency Stabilization Project” of the US National Park Service’s “Elkmont Historic District: Appalachian Club”. Despite the many “US Property – No Trespassing” signs, the cabin’s back door was flat on the kitchen floor, plus a window and the front door of the cabin were open. However, we were happy that the holes in the floor my daughter saw during her visit in 2008 have been repaired.
We had a big family dinner at Latitude 35 in Knoxville after visiting the mountains. Part of the fun of a reunion is telling funny stories on each other. Here is one I shared:
When my brothers and cousins and I were little, our mothers, aunts, and uncles would sometimes take us to a drive-in at night, usually to see a Godzilla monster movie. There would be two cars: the adults would put us kids in one and lock themselves in the other so that they could watch the movie and eat their popcorn in peace. They rolled the windows down just enough to let in the movie speaker and some air. Of course, we kids would quietly get out of our car to sit on the hood or catch frogs in the grass. One evening, we had an idea. We snuck up on the grown-ups’ car and pushed some of our frogs into the window opening. Unfortunately, one of the frogs dropped into my Aunt Mary’s soda and then immediately jumped down the front of her blouse. The resulting commotion in the adult car was spectacularly noisy. We got in big trouble (but it was worth it!).
Yesterday, John and my mother and I went to service at St. John’s Episcopal Cathedral where my parents were married in 1952. Then, we visited the family graves at Highland Memorial Cemetery on the way to the airport.
Images Copyright 2013 by Katy Dickinson