Saturday, March 7, 2009

The Farm

Friday afternoon would mark the end of another week. Inevitably; we loaded up that grey, single cab, Ford pickup truck with everything we would need for the weekend. We would pile inside, always sitting in the same order starting from the driver's seat: Popeye, Taylor, Beka, Nannie. Squeezed in as close as we could be on the leather seat, all we could do was just ride in the couple hours it took to get there. To fill the time we had a soundtrack of eighties and nineties country music playing loudly in the background; as we enjoyed homemade peanut butter crackers and Cokes we had packed for the road.

Once we got to town, we would pull over and make the routine stop at the local grocery store. Nannie ran inside to get all the essentials needed for a weekend on the farm, and we would stay in the truck and people watch. Dusk came quickly, and Nannie would emerge with sacks on each arm that would soon be put in the bed of the Ford. Finally, we would drive that last twenty minute stretch down the country road to the big white gate that marked our arrival. This was my favorite part because I would prop my little eight year old self up on Popeye's lap and steer the wheel all the way there.

The weekends were packed full of more adventures than a brother and sister could devour. Our days were full of deer hunting, fishing in the tanks, racing our bikes, planting gardens, swimming, diving off the deck into the old fashioned inter tubes, sitting around the fire, swinging in the hammock, and just about anything else we could pack into those short 48 hours. Cowboy boots and swimming suits were pretty much the extent of my wardrobe during the summer days on the farm; and my warmest jacket and toboggan during the winter ones. When each day would come to an end we would all cozy up in that one room cabin to watch whatever show the rabbit ears would allow; yet in my little girl brain I felt like I was at the finest five star resort in Texas.

Sunday would come in just the blink of an eye. Around noon, we would load back up again and ride back home the same way we came; sometimes with the addition of a few treasures brought back as proof of the weekend's fun. We would head home towards the Dallas skyline with the East Texas woods in our rear view mirror. I always couldn't wait to get home to tell Mama all we had done that trip, but looking back each weekend at the farm was almost the same. It was a place so wonderful for a little girl whose life at home was often unpredictable.

That is how nearly each one of my weekends repeated themselves for years, until adolescence crept in and seemingly more important things took the place of my farm adventures. I sit here now in my grown up body and know that those little girl memories are, quite possibly, some of the sweetest I've got.


Sister-man said...

whenever i eat peanut butter crackers, i think of popeye