Monday, March 12, 2012

In a Darkened Barn

Someone mentioned old soap operas on the radio.

"I was just a kid when radio was popular," I said. "We listened to the soap operas on the radio in the tobacco shed." (Well, that brought on an whole brand new conversation.)

But, yes, I remember the soaps that Mom, Dad, Aunt Welma and Uncle Bob listened to while the tobacco was stripped. The radio that crackled sitting high in the corner of the shed.

Sometimes I guess I talk about the tobacco crop a bit much, but it was our way of life. It was the crop that sustained our family and filled our year with work. The crop involved immediate family, extended family and sometimes neighbors. We didn't think of child labor. All farm kids work on farms. That's what farmers do. It is a wonderful life.

The old way of bringing tobacco to the shed.
Young Dad driving horses. Uncle Keith behind him.
Before they tore the old shed down, I wandered once more into the old strip shed. It still smelled of the dirt floor with a hint of tobacco tossed in. Now more a storage area for old odds and ends. I think perhaps I still heard the voices once laughing inside those old boards on sides the shed. Old memories were captured in the flash of a camera in a darkened barn.


I don't remember the old soap operas, but I remember the voices of my family singing along with the radio while their toddler daughter slept beneath the bench. A sound of comfort.

A sound from my lovely past.

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