Weekly Photo Challenge: Future Tense

Looking to the future

Looking to the future

Looking at future tense, I think everyone wonders their future or as we progress our Legacy, it will not be a building or wealth, but the people we influenced, the people who looked up to us, our friends, our children, our grandchildren.  They are future tense

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Weekly Photo Challenge: Lost in Detail

The Detail is in the picture, the calendar shows this was taken the month we moved from this store in New York to Wilmore, KY

The Detail is in the picture, the calendar shows this was taken the month we moved from this store in New York to Wilmore, KY

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Weekly Photo Challenge: Forward

Last Picture taken  of Fitch's IGA in Moore, New York before moving FORWARD to Fitch's IGA in Wilmore, KY

Last Picture taken of Fitch’s IGA in Moore, New York before moving FORWARD to Fitch’s IGA in Wilmore, KY

Fitch's IGA in Wilmore, KY - Now (with the Antique Car Collectors having their annual lunch in our Deli)
Fitch’s IGA in Wilmore, KY – Now (with the Antique Car Collectors having their annual lunch in our Deli)

 

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Weekly Photo Challenge: The kiss

Unconditional Love is that of a father's love

Unconditional Love is that of a father’s love

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Snowbound, an angel in disguise

Snow bound

I looked back through the glass.  He was curled into a tight ball on top of the desk still unable to control the violent shakes.  He was safe now.

That Christmas season we sold more fruit than normal.  Customers were buying apples, oranges and bananas by the box.  Were completely out and there was still two more days before Christmas.  I would have to make a run to Louisville; I called my order in and asked that it be ready when the market opened at five o’clock, the next morning.  By four o’clock in the afternoon on the twenty-third a heavy snow began to fall.  It ended around midnight with an accumulation of twelve inches.  The temperature dropped freezing the roads under the white mantle of snow.  At two thirty a.m. Christmas Eve I left Wilmore.  All the roads were almost impassable, but I knew that fruit was a must for Christmas stockings, I as I wound thru Keene toward Versailles on highway 169 to save time, it was a “Silent night,” the moon was crystal clear, and created a winter wonderland seen just for me.  The stars shown brighter than usual, and I thought about the first Christmas.  At the junction of 169 and Highway 33, the dim lights of a car in a field, 150 feet off of the road caught my attention.  I put the four-way Flashers on, and pulled off the road as far as I dared without getting stuck.  The truck had four tires under the bed and can get good traction on the icy road.

I noticed a large barn and then a small house down along the drive about 200 ft. from the highway with a wary eye on the truck and one on the stranded car I blazed a trail through the field.  The snow had partially covered the car’s path.  The windows were frosted over I couldn’t tell if anyone was inside.

I knocked on the window and called, “Is anyone there?”

No one answered; I pried the frozen door open and saw a semiconscious man slumped over the wheel.  “Come on sir, you have to go with me.  You’re going to freeze if you stay here.”  “I’ve got to take my car, can you help me get it back on the road?”  The man tried to rive the engine, it choked and died; the gas line had frozen.  We stumbled back across the field to my truck.

“Sir, I’m going to Louisville.  I’ll drop you off at the restaurant in Versailles.  You can call someone there.”

The man crawled down the floor against the truck’s heater.  He was unable to stop shaking from the cold.  I took my old barn jacket off and covered him for extra warmth.

The chatter of his teeth, the roar of the fan motor and crunching of the tires on the snow made a strange song of desperation for my passenger.  It was pass four o’clock when I pulled into the restaurant’s parking lot.  It should be open for breakfast, but it was closed.
“Wake up sir, you can’t stay here.   Where can I take you?  Is there anyone whom I can call?”  My passenger roused.

The man’s teeth chattered, “cc-can you take me to SS-Shelbyville?  I have a bb-brother who has a gas ss-station.  If I can get there, I have a kkk-key.”

There was no further communication from my passenger, his “song” continued, punctuated by an occasional moan.  “Sir you have to get up and show me where your brother’s station is, we’re almost out of Shelbyville,” I urged him.

The man raised his head high enough to see out of the truck’s window and saw where we were.  “The next light, right at the next light, the Shell Station.”  I helped the frozen man tumble out of the truck and into the station.  I made sure he got in and the lights were on and the heat was up, I heard him call his brother and say where he was, he’s brother would be coming soon to help him.

“You’ll be all right now.  I hope you have a Merry Christmas sir,” I said as I walked towards the door.

“Buddy, I don’t know who you are, but you are my angel, my guardian angel.  I knew I was going to die tonight there in my car and never see Christmas.  It was ten o’clock last night when I ran off the road.  I tried to get the people in that house to help me, I knocked on the door, I could see in side, they were watching TV but the wouldn’t come to the door.  I guess they were afraid.  I went back to my car and kept the motor running to stay warm and tried to figure out what to do.  I really can’t thank you,” he choked.  I pated the man on the back, “Merry Christmas sir,” I said as walked through the station door making sure it closed securely behind me.

christmas eve 80'sI made it to Louisville and back with my load with a story to tell, and the true spirit of Christmas in my heart.”

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Thanksgiving, The Day I grew up

dad at moores storeThanksgiving Day 1950, the day I grew up

The wonderful smells of Thanksgiving turkey and pumpkin pie as they baked filled our house.  I couldn’t wait until two o’clock.  I loved turkey and all its trimmings.  “Come on Clarabelle get dressed.  Let’s go slide down Blair’s hill.”  I called to my older sister.  We put on our snowshoes, grabbed our sleds and headed to our favorite hill about a mile from the house; it was covered with several inches of heavy snow.  I stood at the top and looked toward the creek that cut across the bottom of our run.  I couldn’t tell from the top if it was frozen.  I would have to brake before I plunged across the creek.  “Come on Chicken!  Last one down is a rotten egg,” was lost to the wind as I jumped on my toboggan.  I couldn’t leave Clarabelle in the dust, she was right behind me, but I did manage to throw up some loose snow in her direction.  WE had been sledding for about an hour as Dad came in the car with my tow younger sisters, Lila and Johanna.  “Len take your sisters for a ride.  They’ve been pleading with me all morning to take them,” my dad demanded.  I told him it was too dangerous, because you had to stop short of the creek, I still wasn’t sure if the creek was frozen solid, and I didn’t want to find out the hard way.  Its surface was covered with snow, so I couldn’t tell the depth of the ice.  Lila still pleaded with Dad, and he gave in to her will.  Climbing on board Dad put Lila in front of him, the hill had gotten slick, and their ride was fast, Lila became scared, putting her legs out as dad came to the bottom.  A loud crack and scream erupted from Lila.  Dad finally got the sled stopped; he scooped Lila up and climbed up the slippery hill with Lila and his arms and the tobogon in tow.  Out of breath, Dad called, “Len I think her leg is broken.”  A neighbor had been watching, “John make her stand on her leg, that way you will know if it’s broken.”  Lila didn’t want to, but she obeyed Dad, she screamed as the bone punctured the skin.  It was a compound fracture.

Dad gently picked her up and talk all the girls back to the house, “Len, bring all the sleds and go home, we will have to take Lila to the hospital in Plattsburg.”  I trudged back to the house, wondering if I’d ever be able to enjoy my beautiful mahogany toboggan after today, it had been my Christmas present from the year before, I drug my load out into the snow on the surface of the creek, I went through the ice up to my waist, freezing I struggled with the water and the sleds but finally made it to the other side.  By the time I got home, I was chilled to the bone.  There was no one home to help me put the sleds away, or get warm.  The once warm smells of our dinner, seemed forgotten, Momma had gone with Dad to the doctor.  It took me the rest of the afternoon to get warm.  We didn’t get to eat, until Dad came home later in the evening, around eight o’clock.  Dad came back and said that Lila had a compound fracture, both bones in her leg were broken, and she would never be able to walk again without a crutch.

We sat down for our late Thanksgiving Dinner, Dad said his blessing and began to carve the Turkey, he broke down and cried, I had never seen my Dad cry, he wept for his Lila.  I looked at my Dad and saw how defeated he looked and knew life was hard.  I was ten years old, and that was the day I grew up, leaving behind my childhood dreams.

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Weekly Post: The Stranger

Since it’s Halloween month, I thought this week I’d tell a “real” scary story.

THE STRANGER

When I was eight years old my favorite show was Little Orphan Annie, it came on every Sunday afternoon, and filled our dull day with adventure and mystery.   It was our reward if we sat still and behaved in church, I had to keep myself from running as church let out to make it home and changed so I could hear the booming voice of the announcer, as he invited us to listen in on Annie’s next adventure.  I had just sat down and turned the radio on and heard the tubes crackle as they came to life, but just as I waited for the deep voice of the announcer, I heard our newscaster, “Be on the look out for a late model station wagon with Canada plates.”  The newscaster continued, “Be on the look out for a tall man, height about 6 foot 2, dark hair, age about 35, last seen wearing a fur coat.”  The announcer continued, “Do not approach this man, but contact the local authorizes, he is wanted in connection to a murder of a family of five outside Vancouver.”  The crackle started again when the announcer came back on, “we now return to our regular scheduled program.”  The booming voice of the announcer started.  I looked at my sister with wide eyes, “do you think he’ll come here Clarabelle?”  My older and wiser sister rolled her eyes, “of course not Len, there’s no reason, why would anyone come to Moore’s who’s on the run?  Be quiet I want to listen.”

We sat back and listened to the show, but all I could think of was the station wagon, I looked out the window watching for anything unusual, but all I saw was snow flakes, snow and more snow.  I wished that Daddy and Momma were there, they had gone to New York city for the weekend, and all we had to protect us from the killer was our five foot two Nanny, who was no older then sixteen and no stronger then my sister Claribell.  I looked at the door and wished we had a big lock, then I gazed out of the front window and I saw him, the tall figure in the fur coat, he was walking up sidewalk across the street and there was the station wagon.  It couldn’t be true I thought, I called to the Nanny and she looked out, she sensed as I did that this was a real threat, she picked up my small brother, and quietly called my sisters and I to follow her.  Just as we crept into the dinning room we heard the knob of the front door turn and the wood crecked as it gave way to open.  Our nanny gave a gesture to remain quiet as we backed into the kitchen, we could hear the loud steps of the tall man walk through the hall coming closer, we could hear him walk up the stairs, opening the doors and closing, walking back down and entering the dining room, with steps more silent then I thought possible we backed into the kitchen cupboard, we squished in, with not room to move, I heard the door open to the kitchen and my heart pounded, I was sure he’d hear it, pounding like drums.

We each held our breath as we heard the steps pause at the door, but it wouldn’t give, we were so crammed in there was no room for it to open.  The man gave one last tug and walked on, losing interest, we held our breath and waited as we listened, the steps grew fainter and at last we heard the front door close and the latch catch.  Our Nanny squeezed us against the shelving as she pulled the door open.  We all seemed to tumble out; we crept in and looked at the window, and saw the back of the man as he excited our gate.
We could smell he’s cherry pipe everywhere, a reminder that he had been real, with that Nanny asked Clarabelle to go next door and get the pastor, he’d call the authorities.

As Clarabelle leapt the fence to the parsonage and ran for the door, Nanny seemed to crumble to the kitchen chair, and sensing it was clear, Johnny let out a holler.   Nanny patted him, trying to calm him, as I kept watch from the front window, peering just above the window ledge, crouched so if there was another passerby or our visitor returned he would not see me.

Minutes seem to stretch like hours, finally the pastor burst in, convinced that it was our imagination and sense of fear of not having Daddy at home that had created this crisis, then he smelt it, the cherry pipe tobacco, it seemed to linger in every crevice of the house.

We later heard on the radio that in deed the man had passed through Moore’s taking the back roads from Canada to the United States, he was caught that night and found guilty of killing the family of five, I wondered why he’d stopped at our house, but I always knew it was God’s protection that kept him from finding us, and of course my addiction to Orphan Annie that alerted us, but sadly after a real life mystery, it no longer held the thrill of life and death.

COPYRIGHT 2011 Stephanie Fitch – all rights reserved

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