I had heard the story many times and recognized the faded scene. Captured during the Great Depression, this moment was fixed but lived on in my Mother’s memories. The family needed to move on in order to find work. Mom remembered loading a truck with “everything we owned”.
It is a dramatic picture and it is personal. Faith, my mother and the oldest of the six children, is leaning against the side of the truck while Grandma Hazel, holding her youngest, gazes toward the camera.
Hazel had Moxie. Moxie is an old New England tonic and Grandma always kept a bottle around. Bitter and bold, it was meant to be more restorative than refreshing. She was not the most demonstrative in her affection, but her love showed up in the practical ways her family needed.
The day of Grandma’s funeral was a perfect New England Autumn day. The sky was deep blue, a backdrop for the brilliant red and bold yellow leaves. They fell like confetti on the grass and graves. I looked around the family gathered together from all walks of life. I made Grandma a promise that day to just make the best use of what I had-like she had done. Grandma left me with a saying that clings to me as if she had handed me her favorite sweater. “There’s more than one way to skin a cat” and that was the beginning of my entrepreneurial vision.
Just call me Moxie.
Kristen “Moxie” Johnson