The speaker is a 65-year-old White woman with a college education from Council Bluffs, Iowa; she was recorded in 1968.
|Inf: I have a very interesting hobby that's given me so much pleasure. We've enjoyed many experiences that I wouldn't have had otherwise. About ten years ago, or maybe more, I attended a demonstration of a Joseph Conrad, on flowers, and it was a whole new world to me. I thought you just picked, and I think up until then you did, just go in the garden and pick flowers an' put 'em in a vase. Because uh, the Japanese have done it for many years, but I don't think, particularly in the middle-west, we had done too much of it until recently.
I'm not a professional and um, I shall never forget hearing the grandchildren once when I had been doing an arrangement or something in the house. I heard them talking, and one of them said, "You know, I think this grandmother's kinda silly, don't you?" And the others said, "Yeah, but gee, isn't she fun?"
And I, I almost wept on that.But um, also I do Christmas decorations and once in a while to a club or a group, give a demonstration. I did one that was a great thrill. We have an Iowa School for the Deaf in Council Bluffs, and the Home Ec teacher asked me if I would come out and do a Christmas talk display. So uh, we went out quite early. My husband helped me, eh, there's, you have to transport quite a bit of junk to do these things, and she asked me if I would uh, they were sewing, and she asked me if I would do the uh, help the girls, or watch them, and pretty soon I felt a pull on my shoulder and one of the girls wanted me to come help her sew, thread the machine. Well, my machine is much older. I didn't have much luck on that. But it was a thrill to do for these girls, and until you caught on to what was wrong, it was kinda nerve-wracking. I would say something that I thought was really quite clever, and usually brought a laugh, I mean a ground-breaker, perfect silence. And you think, well, what have I done? What's wrong? And uh, then in just a minute or two, they would burst out laughing, or at least respond to my funny remark. And uh, it was being interpreted as I did, by one of the teachers in sign language. And you see it took them a minute after I had said it, then she had to interpret it. So, once I learned to give 'em a little time to go on, but that was such fun.