It was one of those vague childhood memories. We seem to have crossed a low spot or a run in getting there. There was a porch on the front of the house and the dining room and kitchen were inside the door. Across the room, a door went out to a back porch, and almost at the edge of the porch was a grape arbor, hanging full of ripe grapes. My folks and my maternal grandparents were there, along with my grandma’s sister, Dovie, and her son, Jack, probably about 10-12 years old. For some reason, though, I couldn’t remember whose house it was.
I do remember that Jack had a BB gun and was shooting grapes for practice, unknown to the adults sitting on the front porch. He let me take a few shots, too. I accidentally spilled the beans when I told my dad that I’d hit one. Aunt Dovie overheard me and made Jack stop his “target shooting.” That’s all I really remember about the day.
Over the years, I‘ve told my mom about the memory a few times and she always said that it would have been Uncle Chuck’s place. He was Grandma’s brother, and I always remember him living in a little village a few miles away from where the country home was located. He and his wife apparently moved to town when they got older. Mom didn’t have any pictures of the place, but she did have a picture of us all in front of Uncle Chuck’s new barn, clear up on the hilltop. It was dated “1959,” when I would have been four years old.
When I was visiting Mom recently, I was looking through some pictures that she had borrowed from her sister. One showed a farmhouse that looked strangely familiar. Even the country-style “garage” down near the road seemed to be buried somewhere in my memory. When I showed it to Mom, she said “That’s Uncle Chuck’s place.” It wasn’t exactly like I remembered it, but it was the place. The photo is below. © 2012
Click to enlarge.