A Trip Down Memory Lane
How many of you have ever been to Asbury, Alabama? It’s a don’t blink or you will miss it kind of place. Located in Western Coffee County, it’s a small community that in each direction there isn’t a grocery store for at least 15 miles. In fact, there aren’t any stores in Asbury, only a few local churches.
This is the kind of place that you don’t have good cell service if you get to the bottom of the hill and there may be trouble getting internet in certain areas.
But what you do have is plenty of good ol country folks as they say,” they are good people”. Mostly farm land and chicken houses are vested in the area which is within smelling distance of the chicken plant.
I spent most summers in this area with my grandparents.
My grandparents were those people, “the good ones.”
They farmed acres of land that my grandfather had purchased and built a house that still stands today. They went to a local church anytime the doors were open. My brother and I stayed with them briefly in the summer and many of you may understand, but have forgotten these times in our life. When life was much simpler.
We sat in the old wooden chairs at the breakfast table and waited for Granny to put those biscuits on the table. Those things were heaven on a plate. With a little butter and a little syrup, they would melt in your mouth. As we were waiting, PawPaw would talk about how we slept and the things we had to get done for the day. The television wasn’t on, it wouldn’t have mattered any way, there were only a few stations and they didn’t always come in clearly. It was according to which way the wind was blowing.
After breakfast, we went to the fields to harvest what had been planted for the season. I can remember thinking, playing with my cousins would have been a lot more fun than picking peas and butter beans. PawPaw was a simple farmer. There were no GPS tractors or fancy equipment most of the work was done by hand. You could tell this by his arthritis ridden hands that would barely make a fist.
When lunch came, we would eat a healthy dose of something that Granny had warmed up from the night before. The afternoon was filled with naps on the front porch or in the swing under the pecan tree in their front yard. It was much cooler outside, because there was no air conditioner on the inside. We might even walk to the service station about a quarter of a mile away and get a RC Cola and moonpie, while talking with some of the older gentlemen in the community that stayed there for hours each day.
Before long PawPaw would tell them, “we’d better get back to the house; Granny will have supper cooked directly.”
Talking about some good eating, supper would include some of those peas, cornbread and chicken fried in the cast iron skillet. I can still taste that chicken, but never been able to replicate it.
Before long it would be bed time and we would get beside the bed as a group and kneel for prayer. PawPaw would pray, and then Granny and finally all of us would take a turn.
You see things were a lot simpler back then. At the time, I wished there was more excitement. But now, I wish I could turn back the time to sleeping in that swing under that pecan tree in 1986.