Grandaddy was a professor at TCU, and he and Grandmother lived right behind Brite and the Moudy Building. The days we spent with them were measured by the hourly and quarterly chimes of Robert Carr Chapel, University Christian, and St. Stephen down the hill to the east. It’s a beautiful way to keep time, really. But there was one day when the bells weren’t quite as favorable to us.
It was Sunday morning, and Grandmother had decided it was warm enough to walk to church at University Christian. We set out leisurely on Greene in the overcast weather. Grandmother’s skinny legs peeked from the hem of her Sunday coat, and her signature ivory pumps – from Stanley Eisenman over on Berry – click, clicked clicked along the sidewalk. We made a left on Cantey, commenting on the houses and visiting along the way.
It was about ten ’til eleven when we realized it – we were just a block from church and no one else was out on their way to services. Grandmother stopped in her tracks, pale. “My word, Jack…I think the time changed!”
My first response was to laugh. What a funny situation, and what a pretty day to enjoy a little extra time out on our walk! But Grandmother and Grandaddy were not laughing. And they weren’t the least bit interested in extending our little jaunt. They both knew that in just a short moment, a whole congregation of people they had pastored, worked and worshipped with would be walking out the front doors of the church, and looking, directly, at us.
“How much time have we got?” Grandmother asked. Grandaddy checked his watch. They decided it would be fastest to go back straight down University. Click, CLICK, CLICK….Grandmother’s steps went much faster now; in fact, I was impressed at just how fast my grandparents could move. We rounded the corner at Princeton and checked the clock on Robert Carr. Still Time. But Grandmother didn’t slow down.
We were back at the house, Grandaddy at the dinner table, and Grandmother in the kitchen, when the bells chimed. We made it, image intact.
It’s Daylight Savings Time this weekend; don’t forget to change your clocks!