This wasn’t your typical farmers morning. We were outside playing and Dad had left early to feed the cattle. Making sure none of them had fallen in a gopher hole and broke its leg and such.
One of our many chores as children was to gather the eggs. Dad had taught Pam and I just how to swipe them right out from underneath those chicken,.. off I trollied towards the hen house basket in hand. As I passed by the door I picked up ‘The Stick.’ Now for those of you who aren’t familiar with gathering fresh chicken eggs let me walk you through just how this is done.
First you have to have a basket to put the eggs in. Then you have to find a big long stick. You walk into the hen house and you say ‘Good Morning Ladies I hope you slept well.’ You always want to be polite to the ones you’re about to take eggs from.
You walk up to the nest..ever so slowly you take your stix and raise the tail feathers up on that ol hen. Why is that you ask? Well it’s because ol Mr. Bull Snake likes to crawl up under Mrs. Henny Penny at night and eat her eggs. Just think about it….what in the world would you do if ya reached in up under that hens skirt just to grab a big ol handful of scales…makes me shiver! Once you gather all the eggs you take them back to the kitchen. This was my least favorite part. You lay those little critters down on a towel so notten to have them roll off’n the table. Then ya have to wash ’em.. yep..wash’ em.
This take now on a hour or two depending how many eggs you’ve fetched. Once you’ve wash’em all you have to candle’em to make sure there ain’t no babies in there. There’s nothing worse than crack’n an egg just to find out it has company if ya get my meaning. Then it’s back in the basket and into the ice box. After chores we would run a muck my brother and me. We were two peas in a pod. I didn’t much like dolls myself..more of a tomboy I was. Alway poking stuff with a stick to see if it would move. Dead or alive I was gonna look at..dissect it if you will. Bob and I would always run down to the creek chasing frogs..sit in the shade mooing at the cows..skippin rocks. Your typical boy stuff.
Well late that morning Bob and I was down by the creek. It was a good ways from the house but we could still see it. Mom always told us ‘You can only go as far as to still see the house and no farther’ In the far distance we catch a glimpse of our Dad. He was way out there with the tractor but we could see he was a pulling something. All we could tell was it was big..real big!
The closer Dad got the better we could tell he’s drag’n something and he’s drag’n it our way!.This was always a good thing with Dad.. the treasure hunter… I looked at Bob and Bob looked at me..wide eyed both of us just so excited. We yell at each other then off we go!
We ran back to that house as fast as our two little feet could carry us just to meet dad at the side of the barn, Wow….just wow is all we could say! Dad climbed down off that tractor grinning from ear to ear. Just a proud as a pig in slop! Dad had found an old covered wagon!
Dad hollers to Mom …. ‘Donna come and see what I found!’ Pam came a running out first Mother with Benita in tow. As she rounds the corner of the house her eyes widen her.. mouth drops open..’Oh Keith where did you find that!?’ Putting Benita on the ground she begins to walk around it looking it over inside and out. Dad tells her..’Well I was out there just checking on things and ran across it just sitting in the field. Thought the kids might want to play on it.’ Well Dad fiddled with it for a bit getting the wheels all set straight. It was kinda wobbly…best jungle gym we ever had! We had such fun on that thing…..
My Brother and sister still talk about this day….just one of many!
Hope you all have a good weekend…