Monday, February 06, 2012

Barn again....

About 100 years ago, or maybe about 50 years ago, my Dad built a barn for my younger brother, Ross. We all had a lot of fun with it, and later on in life I thought I ought to build one for my own kids. But there was an awfully lot going on when we were raising our kids, and somehow I just never got around to it.

A while back, I thought maybe I'd give barn building another shot, this time for the grandkids. I finally got around to it. I guess some of my priorites changed as I got a little older.

I noticed something else about getting older after I built it. The barn that I grew up with had something called a haymow. It was kind of like a loft. Every summer, we put bales of hay on one end, and bales of straw on the other end. Back then, bales of hay looked like this: We loaded them on a wagon, put them on the elevator to get them up to the mow, and stacked them to the roof in the north end.

Down in the straw on the south end, on some Sunday afternoons, when the Hilbert boys came over and after Sunday dinner, we would gather up some slab wood, and move and stack enough bales of straw to make a vertitable fortress of tunnels and caverns, the deepest and furthest back serving as the Fortress of Solitude. I doubt if the tunnels and caverns were as long and deep as we imagined at the time, and looking back, the Fortress of Solitude didn't really offer much protection when Dad hollered up that it was time to do the milking, or when Mom said it was time to come in for supper.

So the barn I built for the grandkids has a haymow, even though they probably don't know what a haymow is. Today, most bales of hay look like this: I guess they weigh about 1200 pounds, and they don't really lend themselves to building tunnels and caverns and Fortresses of Solitude.

But that doesn't mean I can't regale the Grandkids with stories of how things used to be. Or at least how I imagined things used to be.

I guess that's something else that comes with getting older.


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