Tis the Saturday before Mother’s Day and I’m just spending the afternoon basically alone. Mom had another bad night and is a sleep, as are both of the cats. The danged western chanel can’t seem to get their hands on any new movies, and are showing the same things they have for the last three years. And I’m not in the mood for some of the other silly crap, so here you got me on this blow your steam machine again.
Thinking of mothers day causes me to think of the three women who were my mothers for a while. Of course there was my birth mother who died when I was nine due to the dreaded TB. then my father soon remarried and I had my step-mother for some where around twenty-two years. Then through a funny quirk of fate my father and my mother-in-law clicked and married. They had a good almost two years together before he died.
A family member sent me a music E-mail last night that caused a few memories. It was a cartoon version of a old song from my child hood. “I’m My Own Grandpa”, in a long round about way it involves this guy marring a older gal who has a daughter, that his father marries. Then they both have children and somehow in a convolved fashion his wife winds up being his grandma. Being married to his grandma then makes him his own grandpa. Well the point of this long winded ramble is that I always figured that with my father married to my wife’s mother, that I was her brother. And being married to my sister explained why my kids acted like idiot’s half of the time. Of course the kids never liked that idea at all, but sounded good to me.
If any of you have read, my blog post’s on the Gal’s Of The Old West” as I first posted them, and were interested in them you might be interested to know that my daughter has added some photos to them. She is much more computer suave than I am. Lord she should be she is a Project Manager in Seattle. Any way I think It add’s a lot to the articles, and am grateful to for her for her contribution. thanks Kiddo. (big kid, done passed the half way mark and closing the gap on me, ha).
That all said and done, now I’ll ramble. In exchanging our comments on the post’s and stuff, she made the comment that she wonders about living in those days. Would it be less stressful and would you have more individual freedom? Well yea and nay. You could have all the freedom you wanted I guess but you would be denied many of the things we take for granted. Good food readily available, medicine, Doctors. How about no high gas prices? How about having to take two day’s round trip to go thirty miles into town for some needed thing, by horse back or even slower by wagon? No electric lights or refrigeration, or ice for that matter except in the winter then too damn much. Fuel for heat and cooking, How much do you think you would need for a winter? On one reality program where some people tried living like pioneers for three months they all failed to lay a large enough supply. It was calculated that they would need at least a stack four feet high and almost sixty feet long or more. Of coarse if you lived in the right area you could gather huge piles of Buffalo chips (manure). Folks that’s a lot of sawing and chopping. And you did that in your spare time after the other day to day chores were done. And water, depends where you lived near a stream, the animals used the same source. dig a well, great but you had to draw the water for the stock also. Windmill, were not around at first. It was a hard life. As I showed in one of the posts the women worked like a man on these out posts of civilization. And they aged hard and fast, childbirth was not a easy or pleasant thing for them and many died in the process. Visit the graveyard at Virgina City, Nevada. Look at the tombstone’s there. You will see that when a woman died their babies did not survive very often. A woman was a prized companion most of the time in the west. If she lost her man it was not uncommon to have a rancher ride a great distance to appear at her door and propose marriage, introduced while still on horse back. And often the deal was made right there and then, for a woman alone in those harsh times had not the time to be picky.
My personal daydream was to be a Mountain Man. Roaming the high mountains with just a few trusted companions, with no roots always on the move seeing new country all the time. Of course that is ignoring the freezing streams I would have to waded up to my thighs setting my traps. Or the dragging the water logged beavers out with my traps and skinning and fleshing them. Or the steady diet of mostly meat with a little salt. the dangers of traversing untrammeled trails. No medical assistant in the event of injury or illness. Living in raunchy buckskin or smelly wool all year long. Then the ever present danger of hostile Indians who resented any encroachment of what they considered their lands and game.
Yes it was a hard life for any one involved in it. But it was our history and unique to our land and it if fun to look back and dream of it from time to time. But you know, I look back on my own past and the difference in my childhood and the observations of my grandparents life as I was privileged to view it. And I look at the differences between my dad, mine and my grandchildren’s life. And I think the ease each succeeding generation has had, has somehow denied us a little caricature building. I don’t see the same work ethics that was instilled in us older people in a lot of the younger people. My oldest son is a electrician by trade and he has often worked in a supervisory capacity and the newer bunch just drives him wild with confusion. I know in industry the next generation down from me was by and large almost useless. Us older people had to work for what we got, my wife and I still will not spend money foolishly and often do with out when we could afford something in fear of not having the savings when demanded. While the next bunch down including our kids want every thing right now regardless of the cost and what tomorrow demands. I worry, I worked for 39 1/2 half years for the same company and earned a pension, with my earned Social Security we can survive comfortably not lavishly. Insurance both through my former company and Social Security take a big bite of our income, about half of my pension, but we are well insured for the most part. However I worry about my Kids they change jobs like I used to change socks (being old I can get away without wearing any most of the time). I ask what they are doing about their retirement, the oldest is 45, and don’t get much in the way of reply. I know one thing for sure when we die they will be not much left for them to fight over.
Anyway bout rambled myself dry for this spell. Maybe next time we’ll visit some of those Old West Prostutes, how about that guys?