Girls In The Pits
People ask me where I find my stories. They're everywhere. And we
girls are good at asking questions, right? We also love wearing hats - just
check out my photo page!
I once met a woman by the name of Sue Duncan in the general store of
Rugby, Tennessee. She was knitting with the fur from her angora bunny
rabbits. She was dressed in period costume and wore an attractive
straw hat. I asked lots of questions, some about the plump rabbits she
had with her. Owner of Rock Creek Rabbitry, Sue loved demonstrating
how to spin fur into yarn for knitting and weaving. She had English, satin,
and giant angora rabbits.
What I discovered was that Sue not only wore her straw hat, but she wore
a 1700's plumed feather hat when she rode her white horse sidesaddle.
Hmmmm. We had something in common. I also rode horses sidesaddle.
I asked more questions. Sue also worked for the Big South Fork National River
and Recreation Area Park as a Park Ranger in Oneida, Tennessee. She was
also a firefighter which required another hat. Sue wore many hats! And that's
how the title to the story "Many Hats" came about that was published in the
December/January 2004 Hopscotch magazine issue. Mrs. Duncan was delighted to
model her many hats and costumes for me so I could take pictures for the article.
Another writer I've met who has worn many hats is Ronda Rich. When she
was a young sportswriter, her editor assigned her to cover a stock car race.
She said, "I was appalled. Devastated. I haughtily informed him it was beneath me
(after all, I was enrolled in an aristocratic women's college where steeplechases
were accepted forms of entertainment - stock car races were not)."
Car racing wasn't her idea of a fun time. However, Ronda enjoyed meeting the
drivers and pit crew members and their families while in the race car pits -
the place where they changed tires and refueled. She began to have fun.
Later, she wrote a book called My Life In the Pits and became
an author. She's also a syndicated newspaper columnist, has written several
books, and has become a speaker as well.
You just never know where you might be when you find the next story. You could
be a girl in the pits wearing many hats!
And, while in the pits, you don't always have to have "hat hair." You can still learn
how to manage on bad hair days, learn grooming habits for good hygiene,
and what to eat and drink to help maintain healthy bodies. For instance, did you
know that green, black, and oolong teas have what's known as antioxidants that
help fight toxic chemicals, cancers, and help prevent heart attacks and strokes?
It's an oo-long story, but one you can research and write about for that next science
fair project. You can even throw a tea party while learning how to trim your nails and
hair and deciding on how many hats you would like to wear in life and call it research!