“Take care of all your memories. For you cannot relive them.” – Bob Dylan
During Memorial Day weekend I headed to Lafe, Arkansas for the yearly family reunion. Driving south on 67 was a real treat. It has been quite a while since I had made that trip. As I traveled down the highway my memory drifted back to when I was a child and we use to make that trip as a family. I could hear my sister saying, “mom Wayne touched me” or “mom Wayne is sitting too close to me”.
After some time I came upon a place in the road that really stirred memories inside of me. My grandpa had got me a pup and helped me get it in the car. I named the pup Penny. We made it about an hour up the road before Penny began to whine. It didn’t sit well with my dad, no siree.
My grandparents lived in this house for as long as I can remember. When I was a yung -un I thought that house was so big. After I became an adult I realized it wasn’t as big as I thought it was. One of the things I remember is that when we had family get togethers my grandma would put the desserts on her bed just outside the kitchen door. We called it the “dessert bed”. We had a well on the porch that we pulled water up in a well bucket. All the kids got together and drilled them a well in 1970. They now had running water. Then in 1973 my uncle and I put an inside bathroom in for them, That summer my grandma refused to use it because in her words it was too pretty to mess up. That winter when the temps dropped and the snow flew grandma decided it wasn’t as pretty as she thought because she began using it.
My grandpa had 3 ponds on the place. I remember one day while fishing with two of my cousins and my cousin Billy Jean hooked my cousin Clois’s eye lid. Man my cousin could scream. My grandma had an old root cellar off the back porch where she kept the food she canned.
As I stood there looking at the front door my mind was drawn back into time remembering all the warm times we enjoyed in their home. The front porch used to be screened in and there was a porch swing on each end. They had a wood stove for heat so we slept in feather beds with so many covers on you, it was almost impossible to turn over. As I stood there I could smell the coffee and bacon like it was real. When I was young these smells woke me up and I would run to the wood stove to try and get warm. Oh the memories. I could go on for ever.
In closing I would like to mention that my ancestors fought on the side of the South. My great grandfather’s name was Robert E Lee White. That should suffice as to which side my family supported. Since the new mayor of St. Louis is removing a confederate statue I will never spend any money in the city. The mayor can believe that the Civil War was about slavery. I remind her that over 200,000 African Americans fought on the side of the Confederates. I would also like to remind her how racist the American flag is to the Native Americans. It is a symbol of lies, murder and of the people who took their land away from them.
Thanks for reading my blog. I hope you enjoyed reading it. Be kind to one another, share the love and don’t squat with your spurs on.