Saturday, June 23, 2007

You'd Have to Understand My Parents.

To try and explain my parents to you in a blog would be really hard to do. You'd just have to know them, know the type of person, the country souls that they are - in order to fully grasp the reasoning behind SO MANY things they say and do. Sometimes I stand back, shake my head, and just walk away. Other times I laugh boldly, and throw out a suggestion, something bringing them both back to the 21st century, because clearly, like you're precious parents probably, these people are from WAY OUT THERE.

This morning I drove the nearly thirty miles to the "farm", which isn't a farm, but an overgrown patch of grass out in the sticks that is literally surrounded by acres and acres of other people's patches of grass that is overgrown, thicketed, bordered by trails and endless winding gravely roads that lead to absolutely nowhere. If I told you the name of the township that they lived in you couldn't find it - except that it does actually have a strong connection to the historical Route 66 with its round red barn, and the borders which were ever important on the day of the land run for the unassigned lands, what most people believe to be the ONLY land run in Oklahoma, dated April 22, 1889. There were two subsequent land runs, no one really knows that fact. Nevertheless, this is the place, the spot that my parents decided was perfect to settle into about 22 years ago, and like the mud they live on top of, they are not going anywhere soon. They are stuck in their ruts, and the word "impasse" just won't scratch the surface to their stubborn nature when the topic of moving comes up.

Having explained that, I can now tell you that I found my dear mother at the kitchen table, which is never ever used as a table, but as a storage for food that could be easily stored in the cupboard dad made for her about a month ago. The cupboard, more or less an overtly ornate armour, suitable for display, as dad does happen to be a top-notch cabinet man, actually sits inside the closet where the washer and dryer would be, if they weren't out in the barn. Are you getting this? Do you understand? OK - there she is, at the table, and she's sewing - - wait for it, a new dust collection bag, one that fits a Rockwell drill that must be at least 30 years old. Why is my mother sewing a new canvas bag for my dad, and why is she using his old jeans to do it? Because the cat (Pretty Kitty, a 16 year old delicate feline) has killed yet another 1-pound pack rat out in the "shop" where dad stores his tools, and the rat's family has eaten through the canvas (rather than using the handy zipper at the base of the bag) to get to the sawdust that is inside the bag, rather than using the sawdust that is so readily already spilled out onto the floor of the shop under the table saws. Why must rats be so inconvenient?

Mom's making a dust collection bag out of jeans. Dad is de-ticking the 16 year old cat, but not sure if what he's pulling off of her is an actual tick, or if it is part of her body, a tumor or something, he's not a vet, but he's examining it - and muttering something. The house REEEEEEKS of a strange bacon fat odor, something that I'm not used to because I don't eat that stuff - and since their bacon comes from the real farmer down the road - it smells differently than the bacon that I would buy if I bought it - if I ate it, I don't. It sticks in the air, hangs there and won't let you go when you walk through the aroma like a paste over the stove.

Don't get me wrong. I love my parents, but if I were to call them and say "Hey, what's going on, what are you guys doing today?" I wouldn't hear a pair of happy, chirpy voices from folks in their 70's looking to have a little Saturday adventure in town - they're not the opera type, the concert type, the shopping type, they're not even the going to town type - except on those rare occasions that something they bought in bulk runs out. What I got was an old man muttering about a pack rat in the shop. It had more than 5 pounds of cat food stored away in a hidey-hole, and looks like the dang thing took a screwdriver, a watch band, a few nuts and bolts, and what appears to be a sock, but my dad didn't get the flashlight to work, so he couldn't tell. Didn't matter the cat killed another one. This one makes 4 now, in a week. She's old, but she's good.
Mom, on the other hand told me she was sewing - me, I assumed it was a dress.

I just went by to check up on them, skinny man - maybe 120 pounds at over six foot, and mom sometimes forgets to wear her knee brace when she gardens. I just never know what I'm going to get, see, hear, or find out when I get to their place - except one things always certain, they're still in love.

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