Combining southern warmth with unabashed emotion and side-splitting hilarity, Fannie Flagg takes readers back to Elmwood Springs, Missouri, where the most unlikely and surprising experiences of a high-spirited octogenarian inspire a town to ponder the age-old question: Why are we here Life is the strangest thing. One minute, Mrs. Elner Shimfissle is up in her tree, picking figs, and the next thing she knows, she is off on an adventure she never dreamed of, running into people she never in a million years expected to meet. Meanwhile, back home, Elner's nervous, high-strung niece Norma faints and winds up in bed with a cold rag on her head; Elner's neighbor Verbena rushes immediately to the Bible; her truck driver friend, Luther Griggs, runs his eighteen-wheeler into a ditch-and the entire town is thrown for a loop and left wondering, "What is life all about, anyway " Except for Tot Whooten, who owns Tot's Tell It Like It Is Beauty Shop. Her main concern is that the end of the world might come before she can collect her social security.
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1 . Nice and NEAT
Posted February 25, 2009 by Bobbie , TopekaThis was a wonderfully fun book to read. I loved the picture Flagg painted of HEAVEN. This is a good book to curl up with on a relaxing weekend. I just love her wit! I'm sure you will too.
June 25, 2007
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Excerpt from Can't Wait to Get to Heaven by Fannie Flagg
Elmwood Springs, Missouri.
Monday, April 1
9:28 am, 74 degrees and sunny
After Elner Shimfissle accidentally poked that waspsý nest up in her fig tree, the last thing she remembered was thinking ýUh-oh.ý Then, the next thing she knew, she was lying flat on her back in some hospital emergency room, wondering how in the world she had gotten there. There was no emergency room at the walk-in clinic at home, so she figured she had to be at least as far away as Kansas City. ýGood Lord,ý she thought. ýOf all the crazy things to have happen this morning.ý She had just wanted to pick a few figs and make a jar of fig preserves for that nice woman who had brought her a basket of tomatoes. And now here she was with some boy wearing a green shower cap and a green smock, looking down at her, all excited, talking a mile a minute to five other people running around the room, also in green shower caps, green smocks, and little green paper booties on their feet. Elner suddenly wondered why they werenýt wearing white anymore. When had they changed that rule? The last time she had been to a hospital was thirty-four years ago, when her niece, Norma, had given birth to Linda; they had all worn white then. Her next-door neighbor Ruby Robinson, a bona fide professional registered nurse, still wore white, with white shoes and stockings and her snappy little cap with the wing tips. Elner thought white looked more professional and doctorlike than the wrinkly, baggy green things these people had on, and it wasnýt even a pretty green to boot.
She had always loved a good neat uniform, but the last time her niece and her nieceýs husband had taken her to the picture show, she had been disappointed to see that the movie ushers no longer wore uniforms. In fact, they didnýt even have ushers anymore; you had to find your own seat. ýOh well,ý thought Elner, ýthey must have their reasons.ý
Then she suddenly began to wonder if she had turned off her oven before she had gone out in the yard to pick figs; or if she had fed her cat, Sonny, his breakfast yet. She also wondered what that boy in the ugly green shower cap and those other people leaning over, busy poking at her, were saying. She could see their lips moving all right, but she had not put her hearing aid on this morning, and all she could hear was a faint beeping noise, so she decided to try to take a little nap and wait for her niece Norma to come get her. She needed to get back home to check on Sonny and her stove, but she was not particularly looking forward to seeing her niece, because she knew she was going to get fussed at, but good. Norma was a highly nervous sort of a person and, after Elnerýs last fall, had told her time and time again, not to get up on that ladder and pick figs. Norma had made her promise to wait and let Macky, Normaýs husband, come over and do it for her; and now not only had Elner broken a promise, this trip to the emergency room was sure to cost her a pretty penny.