The Zeimantz teenagers were a friendly bunch. Regardless of their inherited faith, attending a Protestant church was no sweat. They got to see a cross section of life in an early-day town that never grew.
Eligible bachelors came in various sizes and professions. Among the wife seekers, competition ran high for the attention of the Zeimantz girls. Even their names sounded attractive: Mary, Gertie, Irene, Sophia, Minnie, Lena, Susie, and Margaret.
Before marriage, my dad was stuck on Gertie, but events didn’t jell. After marrying my mother, Dad forgot to take the picture of Gertie off the dresser top. Upon returning from their honeymoon, Mom wanted to know what the picture signed “With Love” was all about.
Mother, coming from a tightly knitted German-Russian background, felt lost in the mixed society village of Mondovi. By the time I got born, the Zeimantzes made Mother feel right at home. So much so that Mom hated to leave Mondovi when migration started us back to Rocklyn.
Years later, who was the first to get to see our brand new, day old 1916 Model T Ford? The Zeimantz tribe. Without any driver’s training, Dad was able to steer the Ford to Mondovi with only two rest stops. A 13 mile nonstop trip got us back home that evening.
The passing of time has not totally wiped out the family of twelve. One of the girls, Sophia Phillips, is very much alive and is still living in Mondovi.