Thursday, January 19, 2006

Good Ole Days,,,Or Maybe Not,,,,

Conversations take many twists and turns around this house so that you'd never know, in advance, what subject might crop up in the run of an hour or two. This evening, as I was thumbing through one, of 'bout a hundred (it seems like), farm contraption catalogs before tossing it into the trash along with it's brothers, a rain water catcher caught my eye. I mentioned to James that it was a good idea for those who might need to conserve water, he said, "Uh, Yeah, what is it, a 55 gallon barrel?" I looked a little closer and read on a bit and said, "Uh huh, except it's only a 35 gallon barrel and it's plastic, but it has a top on it to keep it clear of bird poop and other trash, I reckon." Then I looked at the $85 askin price and decided that if we ever needed to conserve water we could make our own using stuff from the county dump for nothing. (Recycle ya know.)

Anyway, this led to a conversation about how our grandmother's used to have a barrel at the eave of the house to catch rain water. My grandmother's, and I'm sure his also, would use that water for baths, hair washes, and for puttin in the rinse tubs on wash day because it was much softer than the regular old water that was pumped from the well. It just made the soap suds up so much nicer in a tub full of rain water.

We also reminenced about how nice it was when we got electric pumps and didn't have to pump all the water from that old pitcher pump out back. Toting a couple of galvanized buckets full of water back to the house wasn't so bad, but it was hell on the hands when you had to pump and tote enough for bath water or wash day. I remember many outdoorsy baths in the summer time. It was much easier to tote that empty, old #3 tub from the back porch to a spot near the pump than it was to tote all that water into the house to fill the tub. I was much tougher then so those mosquitos that buzzed and bit during those baths didn't bother me near 'bout as bad as they do now that I've gotten more delicate.

Another conversation took a turn to a discussion about the good ole days when James told me about a nice oak tree he and his hunting buddy took a rest under today. James said the told his buddy that I used to be able to handle an oak tree about that size back when we would cut our own fire wood.

We'd go to the woods and he'd down a tree or two with the chainsaw and cut it up into nearly manageable logs and the kids and I would load it onto a trailer (Trish and I did the heaviest of the work cause Bubbie and Jami were still little tykes). After we'd cut a load, we'd take it back to the house and split and stack it. We had a splitter that was belt driven by the tractor pto thank goodness, cause I've never been handy with an axe. Every time I've ever tried to split fire wood I'd end up hurting myself.

Now that I think on it, just doing that chore is probably another one of the hundred or so reasons that my back is in such sorry shape now.

Well, those are my Thursday thoughts. It's been a long, busy, day of doing tax returns so I'm gonna hit the hay so I'll be able to rise for another busy one tomorrow. I hope everyone had a great Thursday! I'll be around to blog visit soon!


Mark said...

That was a nice trip back to the 18th century. Thanks!

David said...

Lots of memories in this one - yes I took many a bath in my grandmother's number 3 tub along with my cousins. Got the pictures to prove it too. LOL

Virginia Gal said...

My grandparents had a hand pump for water back in India. Whenever my sister and I would visit from America, we would love to go and pump the water. I guess it was novel from our everyday taps.

Leslie said...

(I had to chuckle at Mark's comment).

Doesn't it just figure that something you could find for free comes at an $85 asking price in the latest catalogue? I'm sure Lee Valley has a "state-of-the-art" rain barrel for a hundred smackers.

I've thought of using one as well for watering my flowers in the summertime. My sister-in-law had one in her back yard and found a little drowned squirrel in it one morning. : ( It has a broom handle wedged in the top now for traction and some mesh over top.

Happy Friday, Brenda :)

Harmonia said...

Just blog hoppin' - thought I would say hello!


Joan said...

My hippy dippy girlfriend made a rain barrel for her garden. She got a huge plastic barrel and added a little tap on the side near the bottom. Works fine!!

I took many a bath in a galvanized round tub. First one in had fresh water, second one in...not so fresh!!

Mary Lou said...

Hey 85 bucks is CHEAP!! Up here in the recycle capital of America, They are state of the Art 50 gallon barrels, with mosquito traps on the top and a spigot on the bottom and they cost 150.00 but they are made out of recycled plastic.

wanda said...

Having been born and raised a city girl I never had the pleasure (or pain) of doing the things you mentioned. I can remember taking a bath in a #2 tub at my grandmothers, it was a blast.
I can remember living in a boarding house where we 'shared' a bathroom with other boarders. Each week one of the tenants had bathroom duty. I can remember it always smelled of pine soil.

By the way, regarding your life path number. That is so NOT you!!
You are the most unselfish, caring person I've ever had the honor of knowing. They missed the boat on this one!!!

This is a little closer...
A person with positive 1 traits abounds in creative inspiration, and possesses the enthusiasm and drive to accomplish a great deal. Your drive and potential for action comes directly from the enormous depth of strength you have. This is both the physical and inner varieties of strength. With this strength comes utter determination and the capability to lead. As a natural leader you have a flair for taking charge of any situation. Highly original, you may have talents as an inventor or innovator of some sort. In any work that you choose, your independent attitude can show through. You have very strong personal needs and desires, and you feel it is always necessary to follow your own convictions. You are ambitious, and either understand or must learn the need for aggressive action to promote yourself."

Sally said...

At my grandmother's house, we took the bath in a tub like that - on the back porch. I hated it as I just knew there were lurkers out in the darkness. But then, I've always been a wienie baby.

Have a great weekend, Ms. Brenda. :)

Phyllis said...

Hi Brenda!! I thought of your hubby yesterday..I don't know why...I was behind a pick-up truck and on the hitch ball it had a small rubber deer that was on it's hind legs with it's forlegs outstretched and a target painted on it's belly! then the forelegs started moving! Hmmm....I guess you'd have to have been there to see it. Happy Friday!!

Brent said...

I can't help as I read that...well...yes, things are easier for us now, but are we better off because of it? Is something missing because we don't have to as hard? I don't know...maybe I'm thinking to hard tonight.

me said...

I remember the rain barrel that one set of great-grandparents had. The other set of great-grandparents had a water pump, but it was right outside the back door.

Sally said...

Now you have a new look!! It's great, very nice. :) You and Joan are too smart!!

Cindra said...

It weems to be the season for taking trips back in time. Maybe those of us who lived then remember how much less complicated it was not knowing everything that was going on in the world the instant it happened. We had enough to worry about with Cuba and Russia and our bomb shelters. But, still, as children we felt safe enough to play outdoors and run wild. We used our imaginations and exercised our bodies in playtime activities. We gathered in our neighborhood streets and played "night games" of freeze tag, red light green light, hide and seek. Isn't it sad that you don't see kids playing in neighborhoods anymore? I guess it went out with the rainwater and galvanized tubs.