One Hole or Two

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If you use Facebook I am sure you have seen this before.  If you have used one you are going to know where I am coming from but if you have not I may be hard to follow.

My story begins in Lafe, Arkansas in the 50s.  My grandparents had a farm located here.  They lived in an old farmhouse with out running water and ………NO BATHROOM!  Yep you heard me right, no bathroom.

Now it just so happens that they did have an outhouse.  Because of their glamorous aroma, especially in the hot weather months, the outhouse was located some distance from the house.  Did I mention that it didn’t have electric in it.  Anyway ours wasn’t just any old outhouse.  No siree!  It was a genuine two hole privy.  Not just one hole by two!  Well butter my butt and call me a biscuit, we were styling.

Or were we.  Now if you have never seen a two hole privy let me tell ya, the holes ain’t that far apart and there is no divider or stall like you see in the public bathrooms today.  Nope, just two holes cut in a piece of wood.  However my grandpa had installed a couple of real toilet seats which added some comfort.  Now for the life of me I can not, CAN NOT, imagine two people sitting there, that close together, beside each other having their morning bowel movement.  I read that back and it even sounds sick.  I don’t ever recall seeing two people coming out of the outhouse together.  One hole would have been enough.

 

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Grandparents old house.

Now when I was knee high to a grasshopper I became acquainted with my grandma’s tom turkey.  Now he had somehow figured out that I was terrified of him.  Now in my defense, if you have never seen an old tom all puffed up and strutting his stuff and coming at you don’t pass judgement on me.  I am here to tell ya that will scare the devil out of you especially when you are only 5.

Now every time I had to go to the bathroom that old tom would be between me and the outhouse.  I need to explain something at this point.  When a guy is headed for the outhouse that can only mean one thing because there were plenty of trees to tinkle behind.  Ok now that I explained that, when you have had a big plate of biscuits and sausage gravy for breakfast time is of the essence.  It is dangerous to be playing around at this time.

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Another view of the old farmhouse.

My grandparents got running water in 1970.  All the kids, there were nine, chipped in and had a well drilled for them.  Then five years later my uncle and I put a bathroom in the old farmhouse for them.  I remember one visit in the summer not long after we installed the bathroom, I saw grandma grab the TP and head for the barn (outhouse had finally succumbed to gravity).  I asked her why she didn’t use the bathroom and she said it was too “purty” to mess up.  That winter when I was down visiting and the snow was whirling she used the inside bathroom.  I guess the bathroom wasn’t that “purty after all.

I had a lot of fun on the farm.  I wish my son would have been able to experience some of the things that happened on the farm.  It was a great time in my life that I will always cherish and Grandma White, well she was a saint and the sweetest person you ever met.

Thanks for taking the time to read my post.   I hoe you enjoyed it.  Remember share the love.

 

 

I would Like To Teach………..

“Whenever you feel like criticizing any one…just remember that all the people in this world haven’t had the advantages that you’ve had.” – F. Scott Fitzgerald

 

When you look at the picture above what do you see?  Do you see someone that appears to be a loner or do you see someone that appears to be a person who enjoys nature and sunrises?  It is impossible to form a true opinion without knowing a little more about the person and the situation.

We seem to be living in a society that is quick to criticize and very judgemental.  We don’t seem to need all the facts and, the “truth”, …… well that is purely optional.  We seem to care less whether we destroy someone’s reputation or creditability.  We don’t hesitate to destroy one’s self esteem with a wag of our tongue.  What changed and why have we turned into a heartless society?  It seems that the media doesn’t care if their story is true or factual, they just want to be the first to print or air it.

 

 

“The only measure of judging a human being is through that person’s character, because is not determined by race, religion, gender or social status.  And one who recognizes this simple fact of human life behaves the same with the scientist, the janitor and the sex worker.” – Abhijit Naskar Human Making is Our Mission: A Treatise on Parenting (Humanism Series)

My Grandma Bobbie told me a lot of things through the years but I think the smartest thing she ever told me was , “if you can’t say something nice about someone then just don’s say nothing at all.”  Those I believe are such true words to live by.  Native Americans said, “don’t judge me until you have walked a mile in my moccasins.”

You ever wonder how different things would be if we looked at people through our hearts instead of our eyes?  How many possible friendships have you lost because the person was obese, nerdy, ugly, backwards, etc.?  The reason I labeled them possible is because 99% of the time you probably walked away with out giving them a chance.  It happens and you know it.

So you are at a party and you see this person sitting there all by themselves.  Your first thought is why are they by themselves.  Then the chatter of the grape vine starts around the room and it isn’t giving the person any good reviews.  Do you ignore them or do you try and get to know them.  News Flash!!!!!!  Hearsay isn’t all that reliable and other people’s opinions are nothing more than a manifestation derived from jealousy or egotistical action.   Take the time to strike up a quality conversation and listen to them.  You never know, you might just find your new “bestest” friend in the world.  Take a chance.

So your mission today (should you decide to accept it) is to start learning to put aside the appearance and look into that person’s heart.  That is where you are going to find what truly makes this person who they are.  It may be the last time you ever see them. Then again one of you may inspire the other to do something great!  You had the idea in your head but you needed a nudge and that person might just be the inspiration you needed.  There are so many possibilities that something might come out of it but if you don’t interact with that person you will never know.

 

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Photo provided by Pexel

The sun will rise in the east in the morning and a new day will begin.  Treat people like you like to be treated and for once let us try and get along for a change.  Learn to look at a person through their heart.  Listen to your heart and not other people’s opinions.

Thanks for taking the time to read my blog.  I hope you enjoyed it.  Remember to spread the love.

 

 

 

 

 

Some of My Pics

 

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Bourbeuse River near Union, MO

 

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Bourbeuse River near Union, MO

This shot I took early one morning and temps were around 42 degrees and the fog was rising.

 

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My childhood friend David Tripp

David and I have known each other since the second grade.  Dr. Tripp is a retired educator who claims two passions, painting and fly-fishing.  He is a very talented artist and writer.  You can see some of both at davidtripp.wordpress.com.

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A little dock diving.

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Amazing what one can do with the photo software out there.

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New addition to the farm, EJ our little cow bred filly.

 

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Eros and Kate

I have bored you long enough.  Thanks for looking and I hope you enjoyed.  Spread the love.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Goodbye October- Hello November

 

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A pic I took a couple of years ago.

“What good is the warmth summer, without the cold of winter to give it sweetness.” – John Steinbeck  Travels With Charley: In Search of America

October must have been in a hurry to get out of Dodge as it gets out of the way to let November in.  It flew by.  I don’t know if it is because I am getting older, but time seems to have accelerated the last couple of years.  The new year 2018 will be upon us before we know it.

I have mixed feelings as October moves on.  It always brings back childhood memories of jumping in a pile of fresh leaves, bonfires, apple cider, trick or treating, and the quest to have the perfect “hoodie”.  Chili cook-offs, picking apples, searching for the right pumpkin so I can make the Great Pumpkin proud.

On the other hand I am definitely a “snow bunny”.  I love to walk in the woods as the snow falls around me.  If you stop and listen real hard you can actually hear it snowing.  Making snow angels, drinking hot chocolate watching the snow fall, watching the fire dance in the wood stove, these are some of my favorite things about winter.

 

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Another pic I took.

Growing up in the 50s and 60s found us being quite resourceful when it came to sledding.  I remember one year we used the hood of an old Buick for a sled.  I don’t remember what year car it was but it was one of those hoods that came to a point in the front.  It seemed enormous to us back then.  Heavy it was and took two of us to pull it back up the hill.  We could get 7 of us on it then we would go zipping down the hill at speeds that seemed like 60 mph back then.  Only problem was steering.  It had none and one day it went farther than usual and it ended up under a parked car.  We all got knocked off and thanks to all the winter clothes we walked away with just bruises.

Another favorite of winter was “snow cream”.  My mom made the best “snow cream” you ever ate I tells ya.  She would make chocolate or vanilla.  Someone said one time you weren’t supposed to eat the first snow but it didn’t stop us and we survived.  Snow ball fights, snow forts and making a snowman another few of my favorite things about winter.

“My old grandmother always used to say, Summer friends will melt away like summer snows, but winter friends are friends forever.”  – George R.R. Martin  A Feast For Crows

So as October make its exit and November comes to the forefront I think of all my winter friends and think how lucky I am to have them.  I can smell the hot chocolate.

Thanks for reading my blog.  Spread the love.

 

 

 

 

 

The Joy of Friendship

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Long time friend David Tripp

“The greatest gift of life is friendship, and I have received it.” – Hubert Humphrey

David and I met in the second grade and thanks to FB we reconnected.  David is a retired educator and a profound artist and writer.  He now lives in Texas and when he comes to Missouri to visit family we always try to get together and chew the fat.  We try to plan a fishing trip once a year and this past week we managed to get some fishing in.

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Rock of David

There is a rock formation on the Big River up river from the Leadwood Access that David wanted to see.  I had sent him a picture of it some time ago and he did a plein air water color of it that I was very impressed with so I named it the Rock of David.  He finally got to see it Friday with his own eyes and rumor is there will be another plein air watercolor of it in the future.

Since we went to view the Rock of David we decided to get some fishing time in.  The river was low so we pulled the boat up on a gravel bar in the middle of the river and did some wading.  We caught several fish, panfish, David caught some smallies and I caught a spotted bass.  Some of the perch were the size of our hands.  We both thought the day felt like a fall day.

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It was a good day.   We talked about the town of High Ridge that we grew up in.  remembered classmates and wondered what happened to some of them.  Discussed teachers and sports.  Laughed.  There was also a lot of quiet time so we could take a walk down memory lane alone.  We shared war stories and discussed books. We solved all the world’s problems.

“Friendship is the fruit which the year should bear; it lends its fragrance to the flowers, and its in vain if we get only a large crop of apples without it.” – Henry David Thoreau

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Big River

“Life is like the river, sometimes it sweeps you gently along and sometimes the rapids come out of nowhere.” – Emma Smith

It is always fun to share the beauty of this part of the river.  I don’t think David was disappointed.  This stretch of the river has never failed to mesmerize me every time I pass through it.

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Big River


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Big River

As the sun began to sink into the western horizon I realized that this perfect day was about to come to an end.  I realized how lucky I was to have a friend like David.  As I watched the sun as it light seemed to make its final escape from the river the realization that the day was about to end, I realized just how we sometime overlook the importance of a good friend.  To think a liberal and conservative spent the day together and didn’t kill each other.  Thanks for reading my blog.  I hope you enjoyed the photos of the Big River.  The beauty of it is stunning and it is easy to get lost in it.   Remember to be kind to one another, share the love and don’t squat with your spurs on.

 

 

 

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Oh, The Memories

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My grandparents home in Lafe, Arkansas

“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.

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Grandparents house in Lafe, Arkansas

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.

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Front door to grandparent’s house

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.

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Headstone of Great Grandparents

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.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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