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.


Bear Naked said...

Don't you think we all have our own *pump house* in our lives.
We may not call it a pump house but it is the place where we put things that we feel we should disgard but keep putting off until *someday*.
Hopefully *my someday* comes before I die.

MommyTime said...

I'm always so fascinated with old barns (and now pump houses) because ever since I was a child, I've been sure I would find some treasures in there. I never thought of dead bodies. I guess I'm an eternal optimist.

Chesapeake Bay Woman said...

bn - I agree, sort of like a junk drawer, however I tend to have "pump houses" in too many in everywhere. And every drawer is loaded with junk.

mt- you would not believe the treasures located in our various outbuildings. I feel the same way about old houses, which are a dime a dozen around here. I'll have to start taking pictures of them. Most are not lived in and are skeletons, but beautiful.

Anyone out there want a bowling ball or two?

Happy Saturday. - cbw

cats said...

We have a shed in our backyard. Everything I don't want in the house goes out there. It has tools, a carpet shampooer, a shop vac, Christmas decorations, a BB gun, a Bow & Arrow, Parts and accessories for lawnmowers and dirtbikes, and I don't even know what else. It's amazing how much stuff you can fit in such a small space. When we clean it out, my husband just replaces the stuff with more stuff. It is a crazy vicious cycle. I'm glad to know I'm not the only one.
I might be interested in the bowling ball. HA!

foolery said...

I found a dead body in our pump house (which is two stories of crap), next to the old futon and the piano but not reachable because of the lamp and the Snoopy chair.

I think maybe the body is yours. Do you get UPS delivery?