Friday, November 18, 2016

But I'm A-gonna Be A Diamond Some Day

[Crazy Horse Monument, South Dakota]

So I went down to the recycle center this morning with a bucket of plastic containers, a bucket of steel cans, and some trash. Getting ready for the weekend, and it's nice to start with an empty kitchen garbage can. A neighbor was there. He loves to talk, so we talked for a good while. On the back windshield of his truck was a "Never Hillary" sticker, and he also had a bumper sticker supporting our Republican Lieutenant Governor. He wasn't talking about the election and I didn't bring it up. What's the point. He's been a very nice neighbor and I always enjoy running into him in places like the recycle center. We're probably about the same age, and he pulled out his wallet at one point and showed me his permanent National Parks pass, which he told me he'd bought at Carlesbad Caverns, NM, some years ago. He recommended I get me one, which I certainly will if we can ever find a long term cat sitter. Mokey, the gray one, gets very depressed when we're gone for more than ten hours, and stops eating. Last time that happened we'd gone to play a gig in Wilmington and were planning to spend the night, but then changed our minds and drove back. Didn't matter. A week later Mokey was at the vets getting shots and stuff to jump start the little guy. It was close to as expensive as the tree guy who came and rescued Wuzzy out of a tall tree. Wuzzy's still never quite gotten over that.

The neighbor talked about many of his trips, including one out to South Dakota to see Mount Rushmore and the in-progress Crazy Horse Monument. He's got a travel trailer. He also told me about something more recent, where his wife had driven off in the truck with her purse on the tool box, and came back to realize it had flown off somewhere, who knows. They were in the process of cancelling cards, stopping checks, etc., when a guy drove up to his house with the purse in his hands. He'd found it on the road, run over. It was messed up, but everything was there mostly, and the guy led my neighbor back to where he'd found the purse, and they walked up and down the road and found every last thing. That was a very good story.

When you get to that part of a conversation at the recycle center, you can offer a like story of your own if you have one. I told him about the house that got blown to smithereens down on Ocracoke. This was about 15 years ago. A water spout had come across a little point and just blown up this old house that was the most exposed to the fetch. Next day I drove by there as it was the talk of the island. There was nothing at all left on the lot but the block foundation, and in the middle of that, a toaster. That was it. I wish I had a picture to show you. Not a scrap of wood, nary a shingle. About a week later the house started washing up on the beach, which is around the south inlet and some miles from the lot, bit by bit by bit. The owners had even posted a notice about the whole deal at the island grocery store. They got some photographs back too, a little soggy but basically ok.

I'd been standing there holding this tub of plastic containers during the whole conversation, and I said I had to go, and walked the containers up to the appropriate dumpster. Walking back to my truck the neighbor asked me, "did you hear about the road blocks they've had to set up, all the way up to South Dakota?" I didn't hear about any of that. "Yeah," he said, "they're hauling a big lump of coal up there to Rushmore. Obama's statue."

The neighbor thought that was pretty slick and laughed a good bit. When I got back home I found the following link up on the Internet Tubes.

I'd been hoping all morning that rumors about Sessions were just that. Apparently not. A guy at the Post Office shook his head when I asked him what he thought about the election. "My kids are upset," he said. "I tell them, it's up to you now, you are the future. I thought we'd do better here in NC. The black people need to come out stronger." He and his wife were back from a three-week stay in Paris. He showed me some smart phone movies of a street band working just outside their Paris digs. John Henry he was a steel drivin' man. But that reminds me of another lyric. "Ask her for water, she give me gasoline."

[Kirby and Mokey in a sunbeam, yesterday. Kirby's the one who got lost for a week in the woods earlier this year.]

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