"Nancy did not like to be told that she was pretty. She preferred to be called interesting." ~ The Secret of Red Gate Farm, 1941.
High on a bookcase in the study, resides one of my most prized possessions ~ my Nancy Drew books. My mother gave me her volumes and over the years I spent my allowance and baby sitting money adding to my collection. When Heidi came along, she and I added more and among the three of us, countless hours of our childhoods were spent reading about Nancy’s exploits.
Capable, level-headed, poised, independent, gentle, well-mannered, tough yet feminine, socially active, athletic and interested in the arts, Nancy - a tall, blonde - spent her life looking for trouble wherever trouble might be. Though her mother died when she was a small child, Nancy had the backing and respect of her father, Carson Drew, a famous Mid-West lawyer, and with his help and the help of her ‘chums’ George, Bess and Ned, Nancy solved over 350 mysteries during her seventy five year career. Remarkably, Miss Drew never worked for a living, but the job skills she acquired and the wisdom she obtained would come in handy for any woman trying to make her way in this world.
Everything I ever really needed to know I learned from Nancy Drew.
Be independent. However, when you can’t do it by yourself, at least be in charge.
Keep fresh batteries in the torch (flashlight) and a magnifying glass in the glove compartment. Since no one wears gloves anymore, there should be plenty of room.
Traveling at high speeds on gravel roads, breaking and entering, trespassing into abandoned bungalows and musty attics, sneaking around ivy-covered mansions and castle dungeons, opening locked doors, chests and drawers ~ all are acceptable when trying to solve a mystery.
When helping the underprivileged (or friends for that matter), be undaunted by the money or time spent.
Take a date to prom capable of moving fallen trees.
Fulfill social obligations and attend scheduled community functions before heading out to do your sleuthing.
Good relations with the house keeper are very important, though they are often laid up with an injury or out of town when you really need them.
Keep the phone number for the orthopedist close to the phone, or if you have a cell phone, put him/her on speed dial.
A flower garden keeps you busy between cases.
At all times be prepared to ride a horse, drive a boat, pilot a plane, fix your own car (or find someone capable enough to do it), break out of a closet, scuba dive or tap dance in Morse code.
Beware of shady characters.
Even though you might have perhaps had a volatile relationship with law enforcement in your early years, the police can come in handy should you ever be threatened by villains later in life.
An attractive swim suit and a change of eye-catching clothing should be kept close at hand for emergencies.
Being a ‘daddy’s girl’ has its perks.
Should you find your friend in a predicament, move heaven and earth to get her out.
Having an attorney in the family may come in handy should you need assistance with titles, stocks, bonds, wills and securities fraud.
Store the family jewels in a safety deposit box.
Roadside tearooms and quaint inns are better than Burger King and a La Quinta.
There may come at least one time in your life where you will be forced to obstruct justice by harboring ‘wanted’ but seemingly innocent fugitives in your home.
Never accept land won in a contest.
Even the most mundane of towns can be home to burglars, jewel thieves, smugglers, kidnappers and organized crime syndicates.
Grateful friends give lovely gifts as thank yous.
Being proficient with a gun/revolver is important during times you need to threaten or kill dangerous wildlife.
Always have at least one friend who is forever on a diet and one friend who is a tomboy. You will be able to compliment them both and keep them grounded.
Spend time with a man who understands what your priorities are, yet remains patient. He should allow you to control the relationship even if it means last minute changes in plans. He should be a college graduate and play a sport, preferable football.
Having a convertible is never frivolous as long as it is a Mustang. Trade it in often for newer models making sure to get a variety of colors.
Eavesdropping is appropriate and often necessary.
Fashionable frocks, pearls and high heels are a staple in any woman’s wardrobe. Tasteful suits should be accompanied by a matching hat and shoes should always coordinate with your handbag.
"If worry were an effective weight-loss program, women would be invisible." Nancy Drew