Creatures of habit, three gossips knitted and rocked on the veranda, sipping sweet iced tea as they did every afternoon. “Where do you suppose Myra Jean goes every day?” mused Hecate.
“Sam Johnson saw her down by the dock last week,” answered Carter-Ann. “Must’ve walked there.”
“Still waters run deep,” said Clementine. “Who knows what strange ideas they have up yonder in Baltimore?”
“I heard she’s been going into the newspaper office,” Hecate said. “Maybe she’s trying to sell some of those gadgets in her room.”
“Bless her heart,” Carter-Ann sighed. “Times are hard for everyone…”
“But she’ll keep her big-city radio and Victrola till the cows come home,” Clementine interjected. “And those books! I declare, she has more than you can shake a stick at.”
“Shhh,” warned Hecate. “Here she comes.”
Clementine added, “And looking like the cat that swallowed the canary.”
Myra Jean practically skipped up the front steps, flourishing a handful of newspapers. “Ladies, permit me to present the fruits of my efforts — a weekly edition without errors in grammar or spelling!”
That evening, as she regaled the other boarders with the tale, Clementine said, “I swan, you could have knocked me over with a feather!”
Learn more about U.S. Southern expressions here.