I am from Ho-Ho’s, Ding Dong’s and sliced cheese, from Chris Craft’s, Corvettes, 66 VW Buses and sleepy dog Ford trucks.
I am from orange and gold shag carpet, grapes made from resin and the smell of rum soaked homemade fruitcake.
I am from the smell of gun oil, 45’s in the desert shooting cans, grey pants with blue stripes, the creak of leather and the smell of simichrome polish on a shiny gold badge. I am from drawers full of fabric, polyester pantsuits, velour evening dresses with deep v’d fronts and whipped cream hair piled high.
I am from the sticky pine tree sap stuck to the bottoms of my feet, mock wars on the water with handfuls of slimy lake weed, the feel of well worn wooden oars in my hands, the blooming daffodils bent over under fresh snow and great fields of lupine with crackling, curling seed pods.
I am from tinsel on the Christmas tree in the living room with a plywood floor and four girl cousins, each more talented than me, from Dorothy and Hattie and DeWitt and Shirlee. From the babies who are grown up and wandering their own roads.
I am from the stern Scots and the pour the booze down the sink Methodists. From never shave above your knees and matching dresses with white shoes on Easter day. I am from sporadic church visits and Daddy holding up three fingers during a hymn so I knew how many hallelujahs to sing.
I'm from orange groves and high mountain passes, from men and women who traveled across the water to fertile farmland and over the mountains to California’s sunny orchards, from nettles stinging, juice sticky on hands and pickles bubbling in crocks tended by loving hands. I am heaping helpings of sauerkraut and helping grandma roll dough for pies. And from sitting for hours in front of heaping helpings of sauerkraut growing cold.
From the salt flats of Bonneville, dust blowing and the sting of vodka poured over the tick stuck to my head, the wonder of a newborn baby born while a country mourned the loss of a President and the Corvette in the snow on mountain roads.
I am from 35 years of photos marching in order in many, many albums, from the sepia toned great grandma to the digitally enhanced picture of the college graduate taken from a cell phone.
I am from a man who bossed convicts fighting forest fires who loved my grandma and who would sit and ruffle the ears of the big german shepard who loved only him.
I am from mountains and music and loving so fiercely it hurts.
(Try your own http://www.swva.net/fred1st/wif.htm)
4 days to the ocean!