Thursday, April 19, 2012

Occupation?

Obviously, change did not work for me so here we are trying on a new template. Bear with me, please.
  1. Street the person lives on: Neff Road
  2. House number:  4 (I wasn't born yet)
  3. Number of household in order of visitation: Too many to count
  4. Is the home owned or rented? Yes
  5. Value of the home, if owned, or monthly rental, if rented: Ask the bank
  6. Does the person's household live on a farm? Of course, this is where you came to take the census.
  7. Name: Willard I. Loxley
  8. Relationship with the head of household: One in the same
  9. Sex: With a name like Willard, I had best be a man.
  10. Color or race: Both
  11. Age at last birthday: 27
  12. Marital status: Still in love
  13. Did the person attend school or college at any time in the past year?: Are you kidding?!
  14. What was the highest grade of school that the person completed?: As high as the grades went.
  15. Person's place of birth: Across the road
  16. If foreign born, is the person a citizen?: Of course not.
Such would be my answers to the 1940 census that was taken when someone drove back the lane and knocked on the door of the house on Neff Road. I wasn't born yet. I wish I had been. I'm sure Mom made pie that day and the census taker had piece of it. I know I would have had a lot add to the questions, especially at the age I'm at now.

What was it like to live in a time when there were fewer people? A time when farms dotted the landscape and kids did chores before they went to school? What was it like when you went to town and knew most of the people you passed on the street? If you didn't know them, you still stopped to chat. What was it like to live in a time......

It is hard for me to think of my parents that young. A young couple waiting for their second child. A young couple struggling to make ends meet. A boy now a man working his own farm, worrying about keeping up with all the expenses. A man with a pair of Belgian horses in the barn instead of a tractor. My would have been mother in the house baking, washing clothes in the wringer washer, watching over her three-year-old.

A war was raging. Young men were dying and families perished in concentration camps. Farmers were exempt so that they could feed a country and the armies that went to war. It was 1940.

The census taker knocked on the door. Ah, another visitor to the Loxley house. I'm sure with each question asked, my parents gave them a story with each answer. A time when life was simpler and people were more easily counted.

Occupation: Writer

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