Dear Son

This letter has been a long time coming, but I think that it is at the right time.  Since I wrote the “Dear Daughter” letter so long ago, this one has been forming in the back of my mind and in my heart.

I see posts on Facebook that you are sometimes depressed and unhappy, and it breaks my heart.  You deserve to be happy!  You were a good child and you are a good man.   What you have become and done with your life makes us so very proud.

You were the happiest baby, and such an easy child to have around.  You were so content playing in your playpen with your toys and the only time you cried was when you were hungry.  You weren’t real happy when kids buried your cars.  You didn’t need to have a great abundance of toys or attention.  You were always able to entertain yourself.

I really tried to help you understand the genes that unfortunately that you got from me.   I know that you struggled with some of them, like anger management.  You did as good handling it, probably more than me most of the time.

We know now that there were a lot of things that you needed and wanted from us and probably we should have known what they were or tried harder to discover them.  The problem with being a parent, as you now know is that there is no manual to help you do the right thing at the right time.  Hindsight has shown us that we missed the mark, sometimes a little and sometimes by a country mile.  For that we are sorry, but as you know “you can’t go back” and there “aren’t any do-overs”, in life.

There are several things that you need to know.

We are so proud of the man you have become!   You have succeeded in the parenting game so much better than we ever did and we are awed with how wonderfully your daughter managed to grow into a wonderful kind, well rounded woman amidst the heartache of divorce at an age that sets the stage for adulthood.   You put everything that you wanted and needed aside to make sure that your daughter had everything that she needed to have the very best start in life.

She loves you so very much and wants you to be happy.  We also love you so very much and also want you to be happy.  You deserve it!  You have made so many people so happy, now it is your turn.

We know that you have overcome many things and your latest hardship was a big one.  You faced it with honor, humility, dignity, and did everything that was asked of you, no matter the cost to you personally.  At the same time you made your daughter your first priority.

We know that you know that we are here for you, and will always be, you just need to ask.

We Love You More

All the jobs I’ve loved and hated before

All the jobs I’ve loved and hated before

In my long young life I have worked at many places some were nice and some were not so nice.

My first job was picking potatoes.  I was only allowed to pick on Saturday and Sunday as Mom wanted one of her kids to graduate from High School.

The pay was peanuts: $.20 a barrel which holds about 3 bushels.  A “section” was about long enough to fill one bushel basket with potatoes.  By the way, the best way to pick the fastest was to stand and bend over at the waist and pick them up one by one using both hands.  I could pick about 20 or 30 barrel a day.  My mother could pick 100 barrels a day.  Amazing woman!   The funniest thing that happened was when one of the pickers put his arm around my Mother to get a little kiss.  He had obviously drunk his lunch or he never would have tried that with her!  She brought her fist up from her waist and laid him out, cold!  No one ever bothered her again.  We didn’t know we were poor.  I loved canned Franco-American Spaghetti cold from the can for lunch more than sandwiches.

We also picked beans and it was harder than potatoes and no more money and it takes a lot more beans to make a bushel than potatoes.

My first real paying job was waitressing!  I was so green and naive and the owner was a really nice guy, but had a cracked sense of humor.  He told me that the Crullers (long round donuts) were called “Male Donuts”.  I called them that until someone took pity on me and explained it to me.  I got a lot of tips because even though I was not a great waitress, I laughed at myself along with them.

Another job was at a new Shoe Store.  My boss told me all about this new shoe that was called “a pound a pair”.  I was fascinated with it and soaked up all the best-selling points.  One day a guy came in and I started telling him all about them, eve had a pair on his feet before he again took pity on me and introduced himself as the owner of the store.  My boss was laughing so hard she nearly wet her pants.  He was impressed though, unfortunately I didn’t get a raise.

I once worked as a waitress for Howard Johnson in South Carolina.  We were supposed to carry everything on a big tray, even if it was a pat of butter!  One day everyone was all in a twitter because the big guy himself was coming in for lunch.  Nobody wanted the honors of waiting on him.  I volunteered and everyone said empathically NO!  I was told to hide in the back room and not to come out under any circumstances!  That job didn’t last long as I was responsible for more broken dishes than the money I earned.  Oh well!  I hated the job and the uniforms!

Now the uniform of the next job was up my alley!  A t-shirt and a pair of little red shorts (I was a lot smaller then) and a pair of rolling skates!  I was a Car Hop if you didn’t guess that already! Girls my age (18) weren’t supposed to serve alcohol so when someone ordered Beer we served it in the plastic cups that milk-shakes were served in.  I got tons of tips and several invitations to go out on the guy’s boats for an ocean cruise.  Now, I am naïve, but not stupid!  Out on a boat on the ocean miles from land with a couple guys and no way to walk home?  I let them tip me real big, but no cruises.

Hey I dated one guy for a couple of weeks, and he seemed nice until two Men in Black Suits knocked on my door with guns under their jackets and nice gold badges in a wallet asked me a lot of questions about that guy.  I spilled my guts!  And the next week I packed up and left town.  My Mother didn’t raise no fools!  Well, I did have two brothers.

I moved to Hartford Conn and went to work for Hartford Fire Insurance as a Keypunch Operator.  What a fun job, setting all day punching holes in cards that the guys across the file cabinets used in the computers?  I put a question behind computers, as they were the very beginning of computers.  My boss used to tell me “A change is as good as a rest” when she pushed something new on me.  This great piece of advice was from a woman that drank her lunch every day.  I lived with two room-mates and that was so much fun.  One of them was such a ditz that the other girl and I helped and encouraged her to get married as fast we could.  The other girl was nice but evidently Mom took such good care of her that she was incompetent at anything that had to do with cleaning.  While I slaved every Saturday washing all my clothes by hand and hung them out to dry and ironed everything she seemed to always be neat and clean for work.  I made the mistake of borrowing one of her blouses and discovered that she never washed anything, when most of her clothes were dirty, she mailed them to her mother, who washed starched and ironed them and mailed them back.  She also failed to get up and get ready for work so many times and we had to pay a taxi that I started to leave her to pay it by herself.

I once got a job even thought my typing skill was minus 10 words a minute!  I got the job because I knew how to set a tab.

Working in the Shoe Shop was an experience that everyone should have! My job was to zig zag the backs of Ice Skates, Bowling Shoes, and Golf shoes on an industrial sewing machine.  I would do about 30 pairs at a time and cut them apart.  I was and am still very fast with my hands and I am ambidextrous.  I wanted a raise from 1 cent a pair to 2 or 3 cents a pair, so when the boss (not the sharpest tool in the shed) came by with his stop watch to time me (supposedly without me noticing) I did a lot of movements and not much work, until he left.  I never got the raise and as a matter of fact, I was escorted to the door and told that they didn’t need me anymore.  There were three very good reasons.  1. I talked up Unions.  2. One of the Supervisors called me out of the bathroom to tell me to get back to work!  I picked him up by the front of his shirt and put him up against the wall with his feet dangling and told him never to call me out of the bathroom again.  3. Another Supervisor thought that we should date and dogged me everywhere. I dodged him but when he got too friendly at work. I told him NEVER to put his hands on me!  Unfortunately for him he attempted it after I saw him put his arms around the girl next to me and fondle her boobs.  I attempted to give him a vasectomy without the anesthetic. If he was slower with his hand I might have accomplished the deed.

When I explained number 3 to the Unemployment Department I was granted full unemployment benefits.

This brings me up to the time I settled down; got married and raised a family! Stay tuned for the next chapter to follow about 20 years later.

Are General Physician’s becoming obsolete?

Now let’s think about this! When was the last time that you visited your GP and he/she actually examined you? Never! You are untouchable. You are invisible! Medicine is a corporate business; caring personalities do not enter into it, anymore. In and out in 15 minutes or less, (you can’t even get a good burger that fast) they have to churn out patients by the dozen so that the payments on the yachts are made on time.

Let’s go through a typical GP visit. You are not a new patient, they have your history before them, or at least they could if they cared to read it.

“Hi (looks down at your chart, because he/she doesn’t recognize you) John Doe, “Why did you come to see me, today?” Jeez, I had to tell everyone but my pastor, someone should have passed that on to you!

The cute little person in the adorable scrub outfit took all your vital statistics and asked you again “Why do you need to see the Doctor?”, and when you called for your appointment, several weeks ago, you were grilled by that Oh so nice voice on the phone “Why do you need to see the Doctor?”

Just try to get out of telling her/him specifically why you want an appointment! Not going to happen! I have tried several different tactics to keep my personal information to myself until I see the GREAT AND POWERFUL DOCTOR and to no avail. I finally tell them I need 15 minutes and it is none of your business why or what ails me, it is personal. Unless you have got your medical license you do not need to know.

I know I am a mean bitch, but, if I am only going to get 15 minutes anyway, what does it matter.

Also I am old! I remember the days when you could go see the Doctor in a few hours or at the longest the next day. I also remember when they could actually stitch up a minor wound in their office. If you were injured you went to his/her office and if it were major and needed hospitalization you were sent to the hospital. There were very few “Specialists”.  Sometimes your GP was also your surgeon!

Not so today! You tell them what is wrong and they immediately, well not that soon, send you to a “specialist” or the hospital. Hopefully it isn’t your arm or leg that is hurt, because the hospital will charge you the other two!!! BTW the Specialist usually is not so busy that they can see you within a week. Also they don’t really listen either!

Doctors really do not want you to look up anything on the internet to try to understand about your condition or what the ramifications of any medication that they propose to write a prescription for you to fill at your local pharmacy.  Don’t get me started on pharmaceutical Companies!

I recently became acquainted with Urgent Care! You can get in to see a doctor or a PA in usually the same day. They call you by name and seem to really care about you. Recently I received a call from the PA, a couple of days after my visit to inquire if I was feeling better. When was the last time you got a call from your doctor?

What we need now, is an online virtual doctor that you can talk to and they will listen just like their real life counterparts, and can refer you to a hospital or specialist with specifics on how to reach either one. Doctors will have to become good actors like the “Doctors” on TV selling their Snake Cures. It would save much time, money and aggravation for the patients, and in this fast paced environment it will fit most people’s lifestyle.   Imagine sitting in the comfort of your own home and chatting face to face with your smiling friendly “Doctor”! You probably won’t even notice the difference in the care and concern, it may even be better!

What do think about it? Let me know, I am interested really, please talk to my assistant first and I can give you at least 15 minutes and will almost immediately send you to the proper specialist!

Dreams are a wish your heart makes!

So why does an “over the hill” old fart think that she can write?  You ask or didn’t ask; here’s the answer!   Because I want to!  I need to write! 

When I was little, I dreamed of many things that I wanted to become; baseball player for the New York Yankees (I was 12 before I realized that girls couldn’t play baseball), that pretty much ended my dreaming, I only wanted to escape into books and become all the main characters. What adventures I had with no one telling me that I couldn’t be anything I wanted to be.  I lived in those books!  So much so that when I stuck my nose in a book my ears turn off!  Literally!  Everything around me disappeared and I was the main character!   This got me into a lot of trouble when my Mother asked me to do something when I was reading, I only heard her when she slapped me up side of the head.    I also wanted to graduate from High School, because at that time, I thought that it was my ticket to success.   Well, another dream crushed, damn! 

When I was in the 6th grade we moved to a different town and consequently were bussed to a two-room school house, until I was in the last month of the 8th grade.   The teachers were, okay, but were not interested in, nor had the time to teach grammar.  In the last month of the 8th grade, the school district closed the school and shipped us off the school in “town”. 

The first day on English the teacher started talking about diagraming sentences and a whole lot of other things that I was totally in the dark about.   It never made any sense to me, and to this day it still is somewhat of a mystery.  Thanks to spell and grammar check I hope I can sound reasonably intelligent.

One of my English teachers required us to write one full page of anything we wanted to write, be it prose, a story, or even copy something from a book (with acknowledgement).  So I had a little fun with him; I wrote stories that ended in cliff hangers, and when he asked (in fun I am sure) what happens next, I would laugh and tell him he would have to wait till next week.  Near the end of the school year, he took me aside and told me that I should do something about my writing.  The sad thing is I can’t even remember his name. 

No matter!  I am now working on a couple books, but have put them aside to concentrate on a short story that I am doing as a Christmas Gift for some friends that have been very good to me.   It has their whole family as the main characters, on an adventure that takes place on a newly discovered planet in another galaxy.  Oh and there is a Dragon!

Another book is based on my 30 year Real Estate Career.  It is a murder mystery and some people will recognize themselves in it, but with different names.  Some will laugh, be proud, and some will be unhappy at my portrayal of them, even though it is accurate. 

 

 

 

The Ole Swimming Hole and Life on the farm

Life on the farm was hard work, we didn’t know we were poor, we just knew we ate well and had fun. We were kids, after all!  

We had our own beef, chicken, eggs, vegetables, milk, and home churned butter.  We sold some of the hay from our 15 acre field to neighbors, and some was a trade-off, for cutting and baling, and we kept some for our livestock. 

We had a favorite place to go swimming, and launch our row boat for fishing, from a neighbor’s field.  It had a very small shore line and not a real sandy beach, but the water was shallow for quite a distance from the shore.  The thing that always terrified me about the lakes in Maine was the Blood Suckers (leaches) that would occasionally attach to a person’s body.  I still shudder at the thought of having one attached to me.   They usually were about 6 or 8 inches in length and black on the back with a red/orange under belly. 

My Dad always spread a large bag of Rock Salt in the water around the swimming hole in early spring and he assured us that it would keep them away.  Whether this really did keep them away was taken of faith, and I don’t remember getting one on me. 

After a hot day of working on the farm, it was a wonderful cooling, relaxing thing to do.  My dad always had a big bar of soap and washed up, while we splashed and laughed, until we were forced to come out of the water by stern warnings, and the mosquitos were out in force.

My older brother was back from the Army and was trying to impress a girl in a cute bikini.  He decided to dive off the back end on the boat.  He planned a shallow dive, which would have been great, if he had checked how deep or shallow the water really was.  The dive was beautiful!  When he came up with a bloody chest, not so impressive.  Just small cuts, but, lots of blood.

My other brother did his thing, too!  He was told not to stand up in the boat while trying to free his line from a log or something in the shallow part of the lake, but true to form he did just what he wanted to do.   He yanked hard on the line and proceeded to yank himself out of the boat and ended up to his neck in water with this feet firmly planted deep in mud so deep it pulled his sneakers off.  Mom laughed so hard she nearly pee’d herself, but finally helped him back into the boat sans his sneakers and pole. 

Now just to let you know that I am no angel, I was challenged by my two brothers to swim the width of the lake, and so I took up the challenge.  The only thing I didn’t think through was that I was swimming alone across the lake, uh, not a good idea!  When my mother saw me out in the middle of the lake swimming alone, she told the boys to go get me.  She also told them to stay close to me in the boat and make me swim back across the lake, with them following.  She was a tough woman.  The lesson learned!! 

We kept a row boat tied to a tree at the shore, and anyone could use it that also knew about the Ole swimming hole.   When we fished for Bass or Pickerel (Pike) we liked to row so we could put the lure right up close to the shore by the lily pads and weeds.  

Some of my fondest memories are Mom and I fishing on the lake. 

In the winter, we were almost always snowed in for a week at a time.  We were prepared for it and it gave us a wonderland to ski, fish, and sled.  We always were happy when we got a week vacation from school.  We could slide down one hill then go up the opposite hill and slide down again. 

In the spring when the weather started warming up and the Milk trucks would make deep ruts in the road driving out in the car to get groceries was a challenge.  Also when the snow started to melt, and the ice in the lake also started to melt, the lake would rise a little, so that the lowest part of the road would be under water, just the place we needed to walk across to the bus stop. 

We occasionally put a small row boat tied at one end, and we would row across to the other end and walk up the hill to meet the bus, and row it back to the other side at night.

If Mom knew this she would have skun us alive, but one time we carried a plank down to the edge of the lake.  The ice was melted along the shore line, so we put the plank from the shore to the ice, walked the plank to the ice, and then carried it to the shore on the other side, put it again from the ice to the shore and walked the plank again.   Really stupid! But I said we were kids.

The funniest thing that happened was the time that my sister-in-law were playing around in my brothers Red Convertible, driving it around the hay fields while the men took the hay bales to the barn.  We decided that we wanted to find out what time it was, so we tried to drive close to the truck to see the time.  Well, to make a long story short, we scraped the whole side of the Red Convertible on the truck.  This was only funny to us, not my brother!!

We found a Surry with a Fringe on top, (honest)  in the Barn and we used to pull that thing down to the lake in back of the house with all our supplies to go fishing, which consisted our Prince Albert tobacco cans full of worms, poles, lunch which often consisted of jars of Tomatoes, or other vegetables. We knew better than to forget to bring the jars and the covers home.  We also found many Women’s Home Companion magazines in the attic.  I also found a Poor Richard’s Almanac, and a leather bound book of the survey across the United States.  These are all gone now, as the house burned to the ground.

My Mother found several old wood washing machines in the Barn, which she painted and filled them will Geraniums and set them on the lawn.  You could almost see the tears in the eyes of the Antique dealers when they drove by. 

Leaves floating down the stream of life

I met my Husband of nearly 54 years ago, on a sunny day on the main street of Dexter, Maine.  He was leaning on a parking meter waiting for his friend Joe, who was trying to convince me to go out with him; of course, Joe was trying to convince me to go out with him.   Joe and I worked in the Dexter Shoe Shop, not together, but on different floors.  I had been turning him down, but this day, I said yes.  He had been telling his friend Shirl about “this Redhead that he had been trying to date for a year”.

 It could have been because of the great looking guy with him, tall, just under 6 ft., blond wavy hair and the bluest eyes I had ever seen, or because it would be a double date!  So I put him through some paces, just for the fun of it.  I told him, yes, if he came down to the farm and met my parents, first.  I didn’t need their approval, I was 20 years old, but, it seemed like a fun thing to do. 

The great looking guy, Shirley (Shirl) was dating three other girls.  Damn.  So they showed up all dressed up for the Bar-L dance hall, which was just a big converted barn.  These two guys were like long lost brothers, even though they only knew each other for a few months.  We were dancing and they bumped into each other, they paused, looked daggers at each other, they took off their coats, and just passed then to each other and put them on.  This may sound blah, but the fact that Shirl is just shy of 6 ft. and Joe is just shy of 5” 6’ makes it hilarious.  They just turned around started dancing with their respective partners, while everyone surrounding just stood with their mouths open. 

We had a great time all that summer, going to dances, picnicking, swimming, and just enjoying being young.  Shirl and I teased Joe about his use to our language, which was a little unfair, as he did not speak a word of English, when we came across the border from Canada.  He learned to speak from watching TV, which was pretty impressive.  He actually used his brothers ID, and even bought a 57 Pontiac, which was very fast!!

Shirl had just buried his father, and was grieving in his own way, while trying to keep his Father’s Pulp business going. The saddest thing is that I never got to meet him as an adult.  You, see, I knew his Dad when I was a little girl.  Shirl says that he would have loved me.  I know I would have loved him, as I already did. 

My family lived in a big old duplex house on Middlesex Ave, which was behind the stores on Main Street, which was probably the cheapest rent that we could afford.  Shirl’s father, Don, delivered Ice to our Ice Box.  If you don’t know what that is, it is a sort of refrigerator.  It is a box that you put a big chunk of Ice in to keep you food cold.  BTW, not only did Don deliver the ice, his family cut big squares of it out of the Wassokeag Lake in the winter, and stored it in a huge warehouse encased in sawdust for summer delivery. 

Anyway, Don was wonderful to all the kids in the neighborhood, when he delivered ice; he would cut a piece off and give it to all of us kids, never from the floor of the Ice Truck, but from a block of ice he could sell.  One day I was showing him my kitty, all dressed up in doll clothes.  He tried to tell me that the cat didn’t like to be dressed up.  I told him no she loved it, and he told me she would run away if I didn’t stop.  I looked up into his eyes, BTW which were, one green and one blue, as he had lost an eye as a child and had a glass eye, and knew he was wrong.  One day, of course the kitty did run away.  My kitty also had one green eye and one blue eye. 

I trooped up to his house and knocked on the door, and asked if they found my kitty.  I was pretty sure that he had taken my cat.  Can you see my logic?

I tell people that Shirl’s daddy was an Ice man and he is a nice man too!

That summer we double dated with Shirl and one of his many dates.  One day when we met, Shirl had a Bee sting on his upper lip, poor kid it was all swelled up.  So as a joke, I kissed it to make it better.  Joe and Shirl’s dates were furious! 

Later in the day we stopped by a park with a small stream running through it.  While, we were just setting, Shirl’s date, of the day, got all excited and wanted to have each of us throw a Maple leaf in the stream and see what happens.  Well, Joe’s leaf and Shirl’s date’s leaves just floated over to opposite sides and caught on the bank.  Shirl’s and my leaf met in the middle of the stream and locked together and floated down the stream. 

I bought a horse that summer!  I had always wanted a horse when I was little, and it was not something that we could afford.  When I started working at the Shoe Shop, the second thing that I bought was a horse.  The first thing was to have a well drilled on the farm.  Shirl and Joe used a Pulp Truck to bring Chocolate Boy home to me.  A Pulp Truck!  That horse was scared to death!  Good thing that it was back in the “old days”.  Now they would never be allowed to do that.  When we got him home, Joe decided that he would ride Chocolate Boy.  So he proceeded to hop on his back, and Chocolate Boy proceeded to buck him right off again

.  Joe never got on him again. 

We double dated all summer and in the fall, Joe told Shirl that he had to go back to Canada, and for him to take care of me, and for the past nearly 53 years he has done that. 

Shirl was born Dec 26th, so he never really had a birthday party.  On his 60th birthday, I planned a party for him with about 35 people, and flew his daughter who was living in Washington State, down for Christmas and his birthday.  To say he was clueless and surprised is an understatement. I will blog about the party some other time, but couldn’t forget the cake that I commissioned from the local Grocery store.  I told the ladies at the counter the above story, and they exclaimed with tears in their eye, “just leave it to us, you will love it”.  And love it I did.  It was a half sheet, with a stream running through it with two maple leaves in the center.   It was the hit of the party, and brought tears to my eyes, too!  Just thinking about it, now, makes me a little misty.

 

Our Daughter lives in Seattle, WA and, our Son lives in Bentonville, AR with his Daughter.   So the fact that we are Full-Time RV’ers should not come as a great big shock.  On one of our trips to WA to visit our Daughter, our Son and family drove up to join us.  On the way to WA they made a few tourist stops and found a great pair of earrings, Maple leaves dipped in gold.  They are my favorites because of the memories attached to them, and I get many compliments on them.

You can never go back! Memories of my Mother

Her name was Alice and every day I look in the mirror and I see her looking back at me.  She was one of the strongest people that I have ever met.  I am proud to have known her. 

She was also funny, and smart.  If she had been allowed to continue going to school beyond grade school, she would probably have been a Doctor, or Attorney.  She beat me all the time playing Double Solitaire and Double Nine Dominos.  She could walk through a field of clover and reach down and pick up a 4 leaf clover without searching. She had to quit school to help take care of her 2 brothers and 4 sisters. 

I got some of her immunity to all childhood diseases, not so with by two older brothers; they looked like chipmunks or some horribly diseased people with mumps and scarlet fever. 

When she found herself alone in a small cabin in the middle of winter with 3 little kids, she managed to keep us warm, clothed, and fed by doing mens jobs.  She picked beans, peas, and potatoes.  If you know anything about picking potatoes, imagine this; she picked 100 barrels a day.  Each barrel holds, I think, 4 or 5 bushels, and she did this and still watched 3 kids.  The owners of the fields tried to tell her that they would pay her less than the men because she was a woman!  She challenged them!  She said “I will work for one day, and if I don’t beat every man you don’t have to pay me anything, if I beat them I get paid the same as them”.  She beat them all.  And from that day on she was paid the same as the men. 

When I was a teenager,   I could pick 20 barrels a day on my best day.

 I remember one day, she was walking back to the field, when one of the young men, who had obviously drank his lunch, came walking over to her saying “Hey, sweetheart, how about a kiss”? And as he swung his arm around her shoulders, she never lost her momentum, she coldcocked him, and he stumbled over three rows of potatoes and fell on his ass.  None of the guys approached her or us again. 

She loved to fish, fished every chance she could.  I think her favorite was Brook fishing, and I fished with her many time.  One time, when we stopped at a farmhouse, to ask the farmer, sitting on his porch for permission to cross his land to go brook fishing. He smiled and said sure and proceeded to hold the barbed wire fence up so Mom could go under. As she bent to crawl under he patted her on the ass, and I nearly fell over trying to keep from laughing out loud.  I also knew that my turn was next.  I was amazed that he didn’t get his head knocked off. 

The last times that we went brook fishing, I was about 6 months pregnant, and we got kinda got lost in the woods, I fell in the brook, and we had to walk about 5 miles back to the car.  We usually caught a few “pocket fish”, and lucky we never got stopped by a game warden.  When I laughed and told my Doctor about my adventure, he about choked.  I told him how much trouble could I get in, I was with my Mother!!!!

One day I told her that my teacher wanted to know how old she was, she was doing the washing and not in a good mood, so she said “tell her I am 104”.  So that is exactly what I did!  And no amount of talking from the teacher could convince me that she wasn’t.  If my Mother said she was 104, she was 104!!!

She met the love of her live when I was a very young child, and Lloyd was the best!  He took on the responsibility of three little kids and a wife without a hesitation.  He worked on the railroad laying, and repairing tracks.  It was hard physical work and he wasn’t a very tall man but he had a biggest set of shoulders and arms that Popeye would be envious of. 

They bought a 15 acre farm when I was in the 6th grade.  The man that sold it to them had sold it many times and had repossessed it over and over.  Well, they were the last ones to buy it, which I am sure disappointed him a lot.  We lived off that land!  Until that time, I was the smallest kid in class, during the next year I gained so much weight, I got stretch marks.  Mother had an acre garden, and we kept a cow, had chickens, and raised a steer for beef.  He hunted, and we always had Deer meat.  We also sold the Hay from the field.  We stored some of the Hay in the barn, and my job was to stomp the hay in the mow to pack it down to get more in the barn, because I was the only kid that did not have hay fever. 

The Farm house was over 100 years old and after I was married and had a daughter, the farm house burned down.  They put a Single wide Mobile home on the foundation and added a room.  A few year ago when I was in Maine visiting, I drove back by it, and was disappointed, that the owners had let the field grow up to trees.  

You can never go back!

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