Sunday, July 15, 2012

Living in the '50s - Again

This morning the gentle paw tapped my head to say, "time to get up, Mamma."  So, we did.  She and I toddled downstairs, she pottied on her paper, I got the coffee brewing, she went to sleep, and I'm drinking coffee.

Late yesterday afternoon the three of us were getting restless, so we went for a trolley.  The temperature had fallen to 86 degrees, we needed a couple things at the grocery story, so off we went.  We call ourselves the snoopers, cuz our eyes are peeled for all things unusual.  Change is constant, so what we saw yesterday in one place may be entirely different today.

One thing we noticed was the levels of our local rivers.  They're so low, in many places there isn't enough water to go tubing.  Another sign of how badly we need rain.  These are the same rivers we swam in as kids, swung from ropes tied to branches, with enough depth to safely let go of the rope and pile dive into the water.

An icy spring ran through our yard on the farm when I was little, and I remember in the summertime I'd go and stand barefoot in the cold water.  Sometimes I'd splash cold spring water from the cow tank on my face and all over my long hair.  Living on the farm gave us tons of privacy, visitors were few, so it didn't matter how scruffy we looked.  It was common as pie to pee beside a building, or sometimes out in the open.  Who cared.  No one.  Life was as free as a bird for us kids.

Now that I'm in my 60s, I can close my eyes and picture our farm yard.  It was pretty crude by today's farming standards, with lots of rocks and inclines and declines.  There was no such thing as a lawn before we moved out of the old stone house into the new ranch-style house.  A pump sat a short way from our kitchen door, and my mom would take our water pail from the kitchen cupboard, fill it at the pump, and bring it back in the house.  That was our drinking water.  We used a common dipper to drink water.  That is one of the sweetest memories I have.  And, I can still see daddy coming in the house after a day in the field, all sweaty with straw chaff glued to his skin, sun burned, heading straight for the water pail and drinking till water ran down the side of his mouth. He sometimes took a dipper of water out on the porch and poured it over his head.   As the little girl, I must have just stood there freezing every sight of him I could.

We had a pantry in our old stone house, too.  Pantries are so cool, and if we'd have a bigger house I'd be sure to have one.  I like things that remind me of the 1950s.  Back then, I didn't have to harbor any responsibility, was only a curious little newcomer to the world, and roamed around getting to know how things worked.

My Gramma had the neatest thing in her kitchen.  She opened a door in the wall, and out unfolded a wooden  ironing table.  She'd do her ironing and then fold the table back into the wall and close the door.  That was way cool, and to this day I can't understand why homes nowadays don't have that feature.  I know we don't iron clothes like we did in the 50's, but still there are times we need to iron.

So goes the business of remembering how things were when we were kids.  The older we get, the more time we spend in the days when our families were whole.  I suppose that's why Our Creator gave us the ability to we can close our eyes and spend time with those who are no longer here.  How in the world is our brain, or mind's eye, able to relive and remember 60+ years of living and life?  And, some say we simply evolved from a fish?  Nah, I don't think so.  There are too many phenomenon inside ourselves and outside of ourselves that perpetually and rigidly march to an invisible Master, that I'm not yet ready to place my "X" in the Evolution column.

Here I go again, getting philosophical on a quiet Sunday morning in July.  Time to get another cup of coffee, but I hate to wake up the fuzzy one who's sleeping soundly with her head on my feet.


The Heart of the Old Mill