Down On The Farm

It’s not often that memories match reality and that’s the case with my granddad’s farm.

Old Ford’s on guard.

As a kid, this was a place where my imagination flourished (fueled by Ski Cola) with images of cowboys, arrow head hunting, fighting WWII, and Huck Finn. On the surface, it was the land and the adventure it offered, but what really made the place come alive for me was the farmer – my granddad.

He was kind, well liked and answered to Sonny. Being Baptist, he was duty bound to share salvation with me and I’m glad he did.  Mornings started early and I’d ride in his lap in the old tricycle Ford tractor to tend to the cows.  I can still picture those big rear tires rolling through and over anything in their path. Afterwards, it was back to the house for a well deserved breakfast. Sometimes we’d go exploring and walk and talk in the pastures for what seemed like hours. His old Chevrolet had manual windows, black interior, no A/C and no radio, so it was not the ideal car for driving in the summer heat. He didn’t seem to mind and neither did I. We’d roll the windows down, talk and then head over to Stewart’s Market for cold drink – problem solved. When I was older, he taught me how to drive and shoot at cans.

His land was (and is) the classic American farm with big fields, hills, trees, cattle, creeks, bridges, tractors, barns and the most delightful interstate running through it (nothing says classic American farm like the never ending drone of interstate traffic which always reminds you it could be quieter their….but I digress).

Today, his home, various out buildings and a few barns still stand. The house is showing it’s age and the ill effects of not having a permanente human dweller. Mice have free reign of the place and the old saying about prepositions – anywhere a mouse can go – has new meaning once I saw where they left their little calling cards. The tractors that once stood ready to plow, pull or play now leak and stand frozen in rust. The tires are flat and the dust is thick.

Time marches on at the old farm. The family that once lived, farmed and thrived their is grown and gone. I still have fond memories of the place, which I cherish, but with each passing year they feel a little more distant.


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