In the years before starting this photoblog, I was a journal-er. This started after my grandmothers death when my aunt, nearing death herself, said to go through the house and see if there was anything we needed to keep. Tucked inside the front pouch of a very old empty suitcase, I found the 1936 diary of my grandmother. It was a simple activity for her, she used a calendar or date organizer and simply recorded a paragraph or two each and every day of the year. I had no idea that they even had organizers back then. Most people write for an audience, however my grandmother seemed to just jot down her every day feelings and activities. There was a lot of complaining, in a soft way. "Wish Daddy would get off these midnights...." and "I feel so bad today, full of aches and pains...." and thing of that nature. Mixed in all of this are brief written portraits that are largely like time travel. Such as the Sunday when they are all sitting down to dinner when they receive word that a relative had been hit and killed by a train on the tracks not far away. Tragedy and joy, that's the nature of life I suppose.
Anyway, after finding and reading that journal, I started keeping one myself. It grew to three volumes and I would make paper printouts to store as a printout at my mother's home. She's been dead a few years and I ran across this backup copy, so randomly opened the the page. Most of our days are repeats of the ones before them but yet we must keep going. You never know what is important. Here is the entry from April 21st, 2003, we were out for a bicycle ride.
Back to work day.
Jonathan and I took a 10 mile ride after school. We rode on the new Industrial Parkway from the top of the hill to the Oldfield's Cemetery. When we took a break, we walked through and I told some stories. The one about Archie Caudill who blew himself up with dynamite when trying to get a tree stump out of his backyard. The one about Matthew Caudill who was “deaf and dumb” (in the lingo of the 1940’s) and was the victim of his boy-relatives peeing on him from the loft of the old barn. The one about the fellow who was driving a fishing trip carload of fellows back from Canada when a big bull moose jumped in front of them. The one about Gracie Patton who lost her young life soon after giving birth to a baby, most likely due to the flu The one about my Aunt Hazel (visiting from Florida) who walked through this cemetery early one summer morning with me and recalled bringing her mother (my grandmother) to walk through this cemetery during her yearly visits. As I said to Jonathan, “What I wouldn’t give to walk through here with her and hear all the old stories”.
We mounted up and road the Cannondale tandem back to the car.