Friday, October 2, 2009

In the air

There is such a feeling of fall in the air, with even a hint of winter in the wind that seems to continuously blow. I think the day's high was 65ยบ .
Seeing all the pumpkins on display everywhere emphasizes that fall is here. I love seeing them, but there is such a feeling of nostalgia that there is just a bit of sadness mixed in with the elation of the beauty that is emerging. I just want to be outside ALL the time and SEE all that I can see.

And at times I wish I go back and visit with friends that have passed on....or visit with my mom and dad and sister. I'd like to see the home place as it once was...full of activity--with things kind of slowing down for the winter. We would be feeling thankful for the fruits of our labor. There would be a freezer full of food, along with jars and jars of stuff in the basement as well as a bin full of potatoes.

Grading tobacco and hog killing time would be yet to come. Along with killing hogs, came rendering lard. I helped with grading tobacco, but most to do with hog killing was done by Neal, George and Robert...and mom, of course. I did help with cutting up the fat for making lard. And sometimes stood and stirred it while it rendered down. Other than that, I don't remember helping much with it...I just enjoyed the fruit of their labor.

And as the weather cooled, us kids played more inside at the end of the day. I do not know how mom and dad stood all the noise. We had a homemade ping pong table in the basement...and believe me our basement was not a finished basement. But we had a blast down there. There was one dim, bare light bulb above the ping pong table, and one of my brothers came up with the idea of using a jar to cover it till we didn't break the bulb in our play.

I am not sure just how they did it...but they attached a jar lid to the light bulb socket. It was the kind shown here. Then they just screwed the jar to the lid over the light bulb and it was protected. This was later carried on the the light bulb in our hallway. I guess that hallway was where the most noise erupted.

I don't know how long that hallway is, but it was the scene of many good times for us. Our bedrooms and the bathroom were off that hallway, and to go in the bathroom, the door was inset a little....I don't know how else to say it. Instead of just an opening off the wall, it was inset about a foot and a half.

Two of us would play...each would take an end. (if there were more than two of us, the others would wait in the entryway to the bathroom.) We set down in the floor and set empty shotgun shells in front. I don't know if there was a set number or if we just divided however many we had...and we would take either ping pong balls or those little bitty super balls and our ping pong paddles and try to knock each others shells down. We tried to hit the ball back before it hit our shells.

I hope you remember what super balls are...they bounced every which way. It got really wild when we used them. And noisy! My goodness, I can still hear the paddles hitting the floor when we tried to 'kill' a ball. I can hear the balls bouncing off the wall. I can remember laughing and laughing with one of my nieces when we were in there playing.

And I wonder why it is that I look to the past so much, and others seem to look forward with hardly a thought to what happened before. And a few people don't even want to talk about the past...maybe it is because I see it through rose-colored glasses.