"Lazy Winter Days" by Rolly A. Chabot
Well you picked a good time to come and settle into the Fireside it seems. Winter is special in many ways. Complain as much as we like here about them but there are those like today that call and say "Come along now I have a special treat for you."
Welcome all who have dropped in to say hello. Glad you are here and sorry for the lack of writing on my part but I have been busy. Four novels in the past four months and now the editing and dealing with publishers seemed to take up a considerable amount of time. I turned out my latest called "Wolf Run" and it has been a success on Amazon so far. I have a sequel in the works for it and it should be up in a few months.
Gather around and get settled in and lets see where the keyboard wonders to today...
I just love to explore through old abandoned places such as this and see what is hidden within. Have you ever wondered what places like this could tell you if they could talk. You cannot help but wonder about the voices of the past and what they may tell you of what really took place here.
I always like to think they were once filled with laughter and joy. I like to think they kept the occupants warm and dry and the sound of happy children can still be heard. What would our homes say to people in the years to come when they end up in this state.
Hopefully such was the case here, it is one of those places that just had a good feel about it. I did not enter because first it was posted with large signs speaking of private property. The other reason, well shall I say the roof looked like the least noise would bring it down. As inviting as it was to check it out I thought better for both reasons.
They Still Stand
The part of the country I live in is primarily farming and cattle country. Within driving distance is the mountains, big city and urban sprawl. Yet here stands a history that people still hold sacred. You see they leave their old building up like family flags. They let them age gracefully and allow us a glimpse into their backgrounds.
This old barn was built in 1901 according to the great, great grandson who now owns the land. He tells me it was homesteaded back then and that it has been in the family for four generations. I asked him why it still stood. He kicked the tires on his truck and said "Why not, every time I look at it I am reminded of why I still farm."
Apparently generations before were dairy farmers and he is proud of his heritage. Good for him is all I can say. Very good for him, he could bulldoze it all down and grow crops but his heritage is important. It is a legacy that has been left and all the sons after have shown respect to the previous generations and the hard work.
Fresh Clear Water
After we chatted for a long while he told me I was more than welcome to just roam around and take as many photos as I wanted. I watched as he drove away with the honk of a horn. "Just be sure and close the gate on the way out." It was all he said.
Roam around I did. Sadly the old house had burned to the ground in 1977. He told me that it had been built from the trees the land once had. Each piece cut dried and run through a sawmill. The only remnants were a few large timbers charred black which had been salvaged. His plans were to use one as a mantel on the fireplace in the new home he was building.
Funny the way people keep coming back into our lives. I ran into him the other day in the Post Office and he asked if I would be willing to hand carve the dates and the family name into the timber when he has it in place. What a gift he has given by asking. I guess he must have asked around and learned I was a carver. It would be a privilege to do this for him.
To some this picture would say junk. To me it speaks history, a family once lived here. Children actually lived and played here before the advent of video games and such. A time when children could make their own worlds come alive with imaginations. There was no limits, their world was endless at what could be done with what was at hand. A bed sheet would take you to flying. It was easy all you had to do was imagine.
It was a time when things were simple. A time when boys would be boys and mean no harm to anyone. You see we never walked into schools and movie theaters to do the unthinkable. We just did what we did. It was a time when you played till supper time and came home when it was dark. It did not take long to hear our parents were looking for us. It was the way. Right was right and wrong was wrong. There was no in between, the results of disobeying could mean getting a strapping and we respected it.
We did not need a GPS to show where we were. We just were, we were just kids who acted out being kids. We could spend our days playing with a tin can and a stick. We could sleep at night knowing our parents would be there when we woke up.
We ate meals together, we played together, we spoke to each other without texting. We just were and best of all we respected those in authority above us. In the small town where I lived I was hauled a few times by the ear back to my parents. That was respect in motion and it worked.
I know there are times when I have been accused of living in the past to much. I have been told to get with the times and forget about what happened yesterday. Are you right, well I guess I am just some old guy spouting off.
I know we are in a new generation, tell me all about it. I happened to live in a house filled with the latest and greatest. Yet I watch some young guy texting his girlfriend who sits at the other end of the couch and all I can think of is buddy you are missing something here. If we still had Drive in Movies what would happen? Well I take that one back as well...
Now that truly carbon dates me... lol. Raise your hands guys if you ever drove away with a speaker still mounted on your vehicle window.
Smelling The Roses
I may be a dreamer, a romantic at heart but I do think the best way to a lady's heart through good old fashioned reality and conversation. Should we happen to take the downside of life and choose to be angry and unforgiving well you reap the rewards... Me I choose to say hello and may our passing be one filled with joy and blessing. What say we all get with the program....
Our worlds no matter where we call home we see the great need around us. I love to sit and talk to the seniors and hear their stories. We have a few lodges here for seniors and I make it a point when ever I can to stop and visit. Just say hello and it is amazing the stories people can tell you of their hardships. They had it very hard in comparison to what we have today.
One old widower I chatted with the other day shared with me the importance of love. He said, "Son I was married to the same girl for 63 years. She worked with me side by side all those years. We raised a family of six children and never once did she complain."
I asked him why and he smiled and said, "Son you learn to appreciate what you have when you have nothing else. Keep life simple, what ever you do son, do it well. Me and my girl we kept it simple." I asked if he would have done anything different and he sat back and smiled. "I would have married her all over again and again if I could. I have lost the most valued treasure I had." He wiped a tear from his eye and smiled. "You see son she lasted many a year and we just sort of fit. I will join her soon. When I do I will be so blessed."
These old building do eventually fall down on their own. They are like the trees in the forest that no one hears. They just do but while they are standing they make a statement, an impact on those who stop long enough to find the beauty hidden within. I have found they are like people. Once a relationship and trust has been formed they love to tell stories.
Take the time tomorrow and the next day and the next to stop and listen. Invite people into your world and they will do the same for you. It is amazing just how much a little love can given will bring blessings back to you many times over. This old fellow has a son in Eastern Canada that only makes it this way every two years. Old Ben said yup, a big wheel in some company out that way. I wish I could see him more often."
One thing led to another and he gave me his son's phone number. I called and the result was I brought my computer over to Ben's place and he and his Dad chatted for about an hour on Skype. Ben smiled and said maybe I should get me one of those riggings and do that every week."
© Rolly A. Chabot
Yes Ben and his son were blessed but I was as well. A simple act of love to a lonely older man made the difference. His words were few as he wiped away his tears. "I need to get me one of these fancy camera things son, what say you and I take a drive and buy one."
If it can bring that sort of joy into a normally mundane day, well I need to tell you I will be all over the task. Can Ben run a computer? Well that is a whole other story but all I can tell you is I was blessed to see the look on this mans face that day. "Thank you Ben for teaching me the value of life. It is not how much we have as it is the way we look at it. No matter how old we or things get there is still a meaning to be shared.
No that you are loved and thank you for visting the Fireside.
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