By RICK CURL
Of The Record Staff
Reaching the century mark in age is certainly nothing to be scoffed at, especially for Flonnie Barnes.
She still has the gentle demeanor one would expect of someone with her years as well as a sense of humor anyone could appreciate.
When you ask Miss Barnes, who was born in Coats and now resides in the Senior Citizens Village in Dunn, what it took to get to where she is now, she doesn’t really have an explanation. What she does know is she’s glad to be 100.
“I’m proud to be 100,” she said. “Life has been good to me. And I still have a lot of friends (even though) I’ve outlived my family.”
Her family included her father, Hosea, and mother, Sadie, along with her brother, Hurley, with whom she sold collards off the family farm for 10 years in her youth.
Her chores on the farm weren’t just limited to selling, no indeed. She was also a pretty handy farmhand, admittedly. She says nothing was too unladylike for her to tackle, even the hard labor.
“I helped my daddy saw wood with a cross-cut saw,” she said proudly. “I mostly sewed some, did some embroidery and I cooked. I did most everything.”
One of those things she did not do was get married. In 100 years of life, she’s never had a husband and doesn’t believe it will change.
When you ask her why she never took a groom, the humor comes through.
“I didn’t never see anybody I wanted,” she said.
When you ask her if there’s a secret to reaching 100 years old, she will be the first to admit there’s no simple or even complex way to go about aging properly.
“I really don’t know how I did it,” she said. “I’m just happy I did.”
If you take it a step further and ask her what she’d tell anyone who asks about what it’s like to be 100 years old, she will give you a simple, plain undeniably straightfrom- the-heart answer.
“I can’t tell them,” she said. “They’ll just have to find out for themselves when they get there.”
If you ask what she plans to do for the next 100 years, she admits that’s probably not in the cards. “I won’t be around for the next 100 years,” she said. “But I’ll be out here.”