Monday, January 30, 2012

Where is Your Neff Road?

Where is Neff Road? What is Neff Road? Who cares?!

Sometimes I am tempted to leave Neff Road. My memories to write on the page are about empty having left their domain to reside in this blog. I find that I, in reality, cannot convey what it was like to live in that big white house back the lane, or down the lane, or maybe I decided it was up the lane. Well, no never mind. It is what it is.

I began writing this blog for me and my family. I wanted to capture the moments we shared and those I cared to pass on. I wanted to have my grandchildren step back in time and perhaps savor a bit of what life was like back then.

Somewhere along the way my original intent changed. My story became not just my story, but the story of farmers, a story of another time, a story that perhaps belonged to others and their past. I realized as I wrote that Neff Road was a slice of Americana. It is an antique more valuable than something to set upon a shelf. It is a feeling captured in words and a vision written upon a page.

A father who taught of nature. A mother whose domain was the kitchen. A playground of barns and livestock. A time at the end of the big war. A family who had known a time of horses to the time of cars, of car travel to airplanes, of fried chicken to pizza. A time that saw prejudice addressed and women finally finding a voice. The apron put aside for a suit and heels. The dreams of being a housewife turned to college. A time of peace saw our boys taken to a war in Viet Nam.

Neff Road is record of not just a family, but of a girl growing up in a changing world. Of a woman who can look back at lonely, troubled times and find the beauty in what she had in her life on a farm. I am a sum of my parts as is this blog. Neff Road could be in Indiana, Michigan, Texas, California, Oregon. It is remembrance of all of those times of our past, a past shared. The buildings might be different. The cattle might be longhorn. A farm is perhaps a ranch or maybe some sweet street in a quiet town.

I don't know that I have much more to add to Neff Road. I'm not sure I have much more to give to my readers of this time in history. Still I find it hard to walk away from Neff Road, because it is still alive wherever I go.

Where is your Neff Road? I thank you for walking with me on mine.

On A Grandparent's Voice: The Slideshow

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