Thursday, May 29, 2008
The Pump House
This is a picture of the pump house on my parents' property and the base of the walnut tree that I wrote about yesterday. What's that yellow thing leaning against the tree? I have no idea. The ivy? That's probably poison ivy. The ATV next to the pump house door? That actually belongs in my garage. I have no idea what it's doing here. And that last statement, my friends, is the theme of this post, because I have no idea what any of the stuff in the pump house is doing there.
Next to the barn I recently wrote about is a pump house with a windmill on top (currently housing a racoon family). As a kid, it was one of those places that I'd never venture into. Don't ask me why I would venture into a barn the size of the Super Dome and not into the tiny pump house, but I believe it had something to do with the proximity of the boogie men hiding inside. At least in the barn, you had a fair chance to get out if you heard something coming to getcha.
The pump house was originally, and might I say obviously, where the farmer went to pump his water. (They were clever like that with the names and all.) Even to this day, my mother uses the water pumped here for her geese, also known as the only animals on the planet with one solitary purpose: to chase you down until they bite you to death. Seriously, what kind of animal strolls over into Someone Else's yard, while Someone is head first in her car, cleaning out french fries from circa 1998 and sticks its head between Someone's legs and proceeds to HIIIISSSSSSSSSS prior to biting? Only one, and that's the devil called a goose. But I digress.
Inside the pump house is a whole netherworld. First of all, even if the temperature outside is 100 degrees in the shade and the humidity is at "can't catch your breath without drowning" percent, once you set a foot inside, the temperature drops down to this: ANTARCTICA.
I recently asked my Middle Sister if she had any thoughts about the pump house. Her immediate reaction was, "The last time I went inside, I saw Mamma's league bowling ball with her name on it." Which is just a concise way of saying that between this pump house and the barn next to it, you can find just about anything, and I do mean anything, under the sun.
Getting back to the whole bowling ball thing, I thought, surely to goodness that isn't in there. Is it? And if so, why? (We may never know the answer to that last question, so I just accept these strange things as inherent to living in such an odd place.) So off I trotted this afternoon to check out just exactly what IS living there.
See if you can determine which of the following items on the list I saw in the pump house, and which I totally made up. Ready, set, go:
1. My mother's bowling ball.
2. Another bowling ball with the initials RCB. Both bowling balls were located in the grass OUTSIDE the pump house.
3. Boat cleats (No, I am not talking about shoes you wear on a boat. I am talking about the metal cleats located on the sides of a boat through which rope is either threaded or onto which the rope is secured.)
4. An 8-track cassette player.
5. Some tools.
6. 1 basket of walnuts, circa 1978.
7. A Fisher Price push toy, circa 1974.
8. The wooden frame of an old wall-mounted telephone much like the one used by Ike Godsey of Godsey's General Store on the Walnuts. Sorry, I mean the Waltons.
9. A generator.
10. A wooden box with MHS (Mathews High School) painted on it. It was used by the person leading the band out on the field during half time at football games.
11. A dead body.
Time's up! The only thing on the list above that was NOT in the pump house was the dead body.
But that's just because I didn't look hard enough. Rest assured there's one in there.
And when nobody's looking, he gets up, stands on the MHS stool, and conducts music to an imaginary band, listening to music from the 8-track cassette player, munching on a walnut, practicing his bowling moves.
Is my family the only one with a slight clutter problem? On second thought, don't answer that.