A place for Quattrones, Betteridges, and Praticos to share our family stories, history, and heritage.
In the 1970s, my mom and Aunt Connie bonded quite a bit outside of the friendly confines of 10th Street. Leaving me with various babysitters named Bepa, MaryBeth, Helen–we had lots of options–mom and Aunt Connie got out of the house together quite a bit. Sometimes it was just the two of them through some classes, and other times it involved others…but always, Aunt Connie and my mom did so much together.
As best as I can remember it…
Belly Dancing classes came first. I remember the investment in Zils (finger cymbals) and a belly dancing album or two. I don’t remember the rest of the outfit or seeing any practice. Maybe those memories have been forever repressed.
Disco Dancing classes were next. The memory that strikes me is Aunt Connie demonstrating the first few steps of The Hustle and then improvising. Because they only learned the first few steps at class, she didn’t have a complete dance to demonstrate. Aunt Connie reached her right arm out as far as she could stretch and then lunged down to touch her toes…and pulled something in her back. Everyone there laughed, including Aunt Connie.
The Philadelphia Flyers seemed to be the activity they enjoyed together the longest. Mom took me to games when she could, but I remember that Aunt Connie and mom took a long weekend trip to Montreal with the Flyers Fan Club. Some may remember Aunt Connie keeping a photograph of Rick MacLeish in her downstairs bathroom.
Together we traveled to Disney World together and even brought my cousin MaryEllen Betteridge along. We rented a motel room across the street from Uncle Carmen and Aunt Theresa in Wildwood which, somehow, turned into Aunt Connie making friends with several French Canadians from Rigaud, Quebec, which she parlayed into a trip where we drove up and visited them one summer. I remember Aunt Connie learning some bits of French from our new friends and would laugh to yell out, “Allay Guy!” as the Montreal fans would do to serenade their star player Guy LaFleur.
It is really neat to sit back and take in just how much Aunt Connie and my mom bonded over the years. I am sure I am missing some adventures in there somewhere.