Just Walking

Billy and I decided to go walking one day. So! We left home and walked through the woods and down to the river. Living eleven miles out of town, you could call us Country Boys. The name of the river is “Little River.” It’s a Beautiful river that turns and twist all along the country side. It has the most beautiful sand bars you have ever seen. After walking through the woods for about and hour looking at all the wild life, running around (you know like rabbits, deer, possums, and coons). But we did not see a single bear.

What we did see was a big, I mean a BIG Red Headed Woodpecker the largest we had ever seen! “No!” it was not the Woody Woodpecker you see in the movies. If that is what you were thinking of. Watching the woodpecker hammer away at the tree you could almost feel the vibration of the hammering he was creating. We watched as he flew from one tree to the other as we walked on down to the river.

We could see the water was very low in the river, but that was good as we could walk the sand bars. You had to wade the water from one sand bar to the next. That was the best part of walking down the river! Walking that river was always a lot of fun. You could see the fish swimming around and once in awhile you would see a Soft Shell Turtle.

As we were walking Billy said he was thirsty and we didn’t bring any water with us. The water in the river was clear and we were talking about how water purifies itself “every twenty feet!”, as the old saying goes.

We found a nice little shallow place and we got our selves a “big” drink of water, it tasted good like it always did. Billy had walked on up the river ahead of me. I was watching some fish in a little shallow hole off to the side of the main river. Suddenly Billy called me in a loud voice. “WENDELL COME ON UP HERE I WANT TO SHOW YOU SOMETHING”! So I hurried on up the river. By the time I got there he was gagging. I just knew something had happened. I asked Billy “you ok?” he was shaking his head from side to side and pointing down at the river. He said “Wendell look down in the edge of the river”. When I looked down, there was this big…… black “Dead Cow” lying in the water. I knew then why he felt uneasy. We had just drank some water “down stream”………………. We must have talked about water purifying itself every twenty feet for a long, long time.

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Shotgun Fishing!

I just have to tell this story!

I was over at J.W.’s house one evening, and we were talking. I here you and your son went fishing down on the Saint Johns River a few days ago to our favorite spot. He replied “we did!” and with a little smile on his face he chuckled. I was looking over in his boat and I saw a hole in the bottom of the boat I knew then something was up. I had to ask him, “what happened to the bottom of your boat”? “It’s a short story.” he replied. I laughed and told him “I have a minute”. He told me to have a seat and to refresh my coffee.
I knew this “story” was going to be a good one. As he settled down in his old rocking chair he took a sip of his coffee and he started telling the story.

Well….. my Son and I were down on the Saint Johns River fishing. We anchored under a nice shaded tree on the edge of the river. It was quiet and we were talking about ever day things, and catching a few fish. Suddenly a snake fell out of the tree and in the boat close to my son, why you should have been there! That boy was scratching to get away from the snake and of course I was doing the same. “What did you do then?” I asked. We grabbed our fishing poles trying to get the snake out of the boat but it wasn’t happening!

We were to far from the bank to jump out. My son was standing on the back seat of the boat and he grabbed his shotgun and pointed it at the snake. I hollered “NO!…NO!……NO”! But it was too late, he pulled the trigger.

The snake was dead and we had a hole in the bottom of the boat. Water was gushing up in the boat very quickly. When it got to about two feet I hollered “plug the hole!”, “plug the hole! son before we sink”! My son stuck his big foot over the hole (like that was going to keep the water out). I grabbed a rag and handed it to him and he plugged the hole.
I was laughing so hard. I told J.W. “sorry to hear that!”.  J.W. was laughing also, He said “that’s ok Wendell, some things are always funnier after the fact”!

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Quality Control

I was walking a job site one day. In one building I had to check the drywall. I opened the door to the apartment. A drywall installer was hanging drywall with no ladder or scaffold board. The man was about five foot tall. At the time he was screwing drywall to the ceiling. I had to “laugh” at what I saw. I was laughing so hard I had to step outside of the apartment. After regaining my composure I stepped back inside to see if this man was ok. He was and he was still standing on “two five gallon buckets” turned upside down with the soles of his shoes screwed to the top of the five gallon buckets. My last thought was I hope OSHA is not on this job.

On a separate note (unrelated to Quality Control) I want to share these quick thoughts!

Being cool in the fifties and sixties meant:

White tee shirt.

Starched and ironed Levis with white belt.

Black Loafers “SPIT SHINED” with white socks.

Nice trimmed hair. Or the all impressive Elvis Presley hair cut.

Driving a nice car with fender skirts and white wall tires. Glass pipes with duel exhaust and chrome extensions.

Walking down the side walk with your thumbs stuck in your front pockets!

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The Grand Ole Opry on Saturday night back in the good old days. You work all week, but on Saturday night all work came to a halt! After dinner we all gathered up the chairs and sat them around the radio. My Uncle would say “Boys and Girls its time to go get the “R. C. Cola’s” and Moon Pies”!  We slid out of the chairs and went lickitty split to the ice box and grabbed them!

Back in the living room my Uncle would turn on the radio and tune it to the Grand Ole Opry. Sometimes he would have to check the ground wire on that old radio to be sure every thing was ok. You talk about some of the best foot stomping, and hand clapping music you have ever heard! It would be coming out of the radio like it was live from Nashville Tennessee. Some one at the Grand Ole Opry would step up to the microphone and say “Ladies and Gentleman this is the “Grand Ole Opry” in Nashville Tennessee!”, and if Minnie Pearl was there she would say “Howdy glad you all could come!”

The music would excite you so much that it was hard to keep still in the chair with all the hand clapping, and foot stomping we were doing! Why sometimes it felt like the whole house was rocking! Ha. Good thing it had a good foundation.

Remember the next time you tune into the Grand Ole Opry, take a minute and be sure to have a R.C. Cola and Moon Pie!


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