Tonight I decided to dust my desk—which is a shock in itself. Dusting is the last word on a long list of things to accomplish in my life, but I decided to attack the layer of dust laughing at my attempts to ignore it.
I got a piece of blue material from the utility. It was clean, neatly folded—a new rag. But the rag in my hand brought up a treasured memory.
The soft fabric was once the top to a set of long underwear! Yeah, go ahead and laugh. I’ll pause … until you catch your breath.
When I went hunting with my dad, uncle, grandfather, three brothers, and a cousin, I wore light-blue long underwear under my layers of flannel and denim! It felt comfy! The weather was cold, and the top and bottoms kept me warm.
So, now I’m sitting at the computer thinking of hunting—instead of cleaning!
One piece of material can distract me from the joy of collecting dust.
That’s because it caused me to remember a crackling campfire—sparks drifting upward—and my grandfather and uncle telling old hunting stories.
I remember the shape of my dad’s hands as he put another log on the fire. I hear the chop of an axe as my middle brother decides we need more wood. I hear another camper’s hunting dog barking on the other side of camp. I hear my cousin chuckle at a funny story we all remember.
I can recall the scent of charred wood and stew cooking in a cast iron kettle.
And here I sit, writing a blog post I didn’t plan to write—a recollection connected to long underwear!
What stories hides in your past?
Now, I must dust this desk.
~Karen Campbell Prough
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Copyright © Karen Campbell Prough 2016
I WROTE THIS CONFESSION A FEW YEARS AGO
Have I told you about him? No? Well, it’s about time ….
It seems like he’s always been in my life. I can’t imagine life without him. Oh yes, my life would be calmer, my weekdays a little quieter, and I’d get something accomplished—instead of wanting to be with him, hug, and kiss him.
One look from him can melt my heart. My will to stay strong wilts when he grabs my hand. I try to type, endeavor to write stories, but he interrupts me. He pleads and makes silly demands. I leave my work and do his bidding. Yes, I know … I should be strong and not give in.
His eyes are sky blue—such a bright blue. Women turn to smile at him in stores and restaurants. I should be jealous because of the charming looks he gives them. It stops them in their tracks when he returns their smiles. I can tell they want to reach out to him. And some do reach for him! But that’s when he leans toward me, reaches for me, and they have no doubt he cares for me. He won’t let them come between us.
Today we went out to eat and it didn’t matter that he stared at every woman that walked by. He literally turned around in his chair to see what was going on behind him.
He also dropped his spoon, pushed his cup off the table, and demanded a drink of my coke. Would you believe he spit a mushroom on the table because he didn’t like it? He wrote on the tabletop with a crayon and grabbed a straw out of my glass.
He wouldn’t eat all his food but wanted his toy truck from the diaper bag. He laughed and smiled at all the other people in the restaurant, creating quite a scene.