I never told Bayno when Mama was going to make fried chicken. If I didn’t say anything, then all the cracklings in the pan would be mine. When the chicken was brown and crisp, I would take the spatula and press it against the bottom of the skillet and scrape the cracklings out of the grease, and when they were cool enough, I’d pour them into my mouth.
That summer was different from other summers even though the garden was the same. All its blooming and growing meant a good harvest along with back breaking work. Sometimes I’d stand in the middle of a row with both hands pressed into my back, my hands making a V and I would bend backwards and listen to all the bones popping and feel the muscles stretch so much they hurt. But with the sun beating down, I’d set my jaw and finish the row no matter if I was weeding, hoeing, or picking.
This post was submitted by Julie Eger.
We lived on four acres. Not large by country standards but a whole universe to a child and her dog.
My father worked in the city but wanted his children to have the country experience that he had growing up in a small town in east Texas. So, braving the commute, he moved us out into the “boonies” where we would have the opportunity to build forts, create mud pools, maintain an aviary, and know what it feels like to run bare foot through the field that you, a child by others standards, mowed with your John Deere tractor that morning.
My siblings and I loved tramping through the woods claiming forts and tree houses that the other gender was not allowed to cross. The girls made homes with rolls of toilet paper and transplanted cacti. The boys made watch towers with tire swings and snake skins. A paradise of wood and mud – and we loved it.
This post was submitted by Beverley Strong.