Monday, September 3, 2012

The rest of the year 2009…

was fairly normal.  I was getting used to being alone.  I had my normal run of doctor appointments which wasn’t anything out of the ordinary.  Visits to my kidney/BP specialist, cardiologist etc.

Once a month I went out to lunch with some of my old friends from the days I worked at the telephone company.  These are gals I worked with until the telephone office had gone dial.  Yep, I was one of those operators who plugged a cord in and said “number please.” 

Those years spent working at General Telephone Company were filled with memories.

I was working the night that a severe lightning storm happened.  A huge bolt of lightning struck the only hotel in downtown Paxton just one block from the telephone company.  The hotel burned to the ground.

I was working on November 22, 1963, the day that President Kennedy was shot.  It was around 12:30 PM that every light on the switchboard lit up.  There was no way that we could answer the calls.  People were hysterical, crying.  My son was only 3 years old at the time but to this day he can tell you how he felt at the time this happened.  beth


  1. I remembered my uncle Michael's girlfriend worked for "MA BELL" as an operator and I thought it was so cool her stories of working the switch boards :) History holds so many emotions with its memories <3

  2. I remember chatting on line with the local telephone operator in 1959 in a small town in Iowa, when lightening struck somewhere between us and we both went flying. We picked ourselves up and came back to the phone to express our surprise and shock and make sure we were both okay.
    Ah, memories. Good post. BGB

  3. I remember that day, too, and I was 8. My mom cried for weeks, it seemed. She cried about it so long, it made my dad mad at her. That day changed a lot of people.

    My mom used to go to lunch once a month with the women she used to work with, but then they dropped out one by one....either because of sick husbands or their own failing health. Sad.

  4. Hi Beth,

    I said number please for some years too, along with emergency which service are you calling? both went through the local exchange where I worked for the GPO as it was then. Probably round about the same time as you.

    Hugs Nita

  5. My years as a cord board operator have special memories too but they were in the 80's. I cannot imagine what you thought when ALL the lights lit up at once. I think I would have fainted and or thought it was a power mishap somehow. That day we all remember as tragic..I just wondered HOW on Earth that bullet could strike from so far away at a moving target and hit it. Learned a lot since then about guns and evil people. XXOO

  6. There are several days in history that I'll never forget. They seemed engraved in our minds, mostly from television.

  7. I remember that day to well.. What a sad time.. Thank you for sharing your memories with us..

  8. I think that the only reason people hold onto memories so tight is because memories are the only things that don't change. I am having a great time and am learning so much more about you as I continue to read about your adventures... your quests... etc. You are quite the remarkable woman. There's a saying that goes "When life gives you a hundred reasons to cry, show life that you have a thousand reasons to smile." When you need a reason, I'll give you a few!


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