Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Ruminations on the 4th

All of the following is randomly thrown together as it occurs to me, unedited, uncensored, and on very little sleep... I think it probably makes very little coherent sense, if any at all... so sorry...

So I'm back at the Burough tonight... I was going to leave for Tampa tomorrow, but this will now be put off til Friday and it's just as well. I don't want to drive in the car two days in a row and this way I get to see my bitty siblings again before I leave. But as I said, back at the Burough...

Jason is downstairs cooking steaks, and potatoes, and tomatoes and okra, listening to John Mayer on the CD player... I'm not much for the tomatoes and okra because I hate tomatoes but that's okay...

Fireworks can be heard in the distance, as well as the occasional gun shot. We are in rural South Carolina after all... This is my first 4th away from Tampa and it's very interesting... I'm in a house which used to serve as slave quarters for some of the house slaves, the cooks and the like. I think Susan mentioned that the dairy next door also housed slaves on the second floor... Other structures which also served this purpose, further down the hill, no longer stand, their foundations lost for now to the undergrowth of the pine forest.

We've just returned from the big house next door where the family is setting off fireworks on the front lawn. We sat on the porch next to Miz Mary and watched her daughter, son-in-law and grandchildren light up the night air with gunpowder... Jason also brought out one of his many guns and shot into the air several times. It was very loud, just like on New Year's Eve. It occurred to me that the house has stood almost as long as our Constitution and that many, many 4ths have been celebrated there long into the past. The porch where we stood was also the porch on which a long ago Mrs. Anderson stood to face down the Yankee soldiers who had been sent to burn her house down... The only thing that saved it was the Masonic symbol she'd had put on a banner and hung from the second floor balcony; a Yankee soldier with some clout saw it and forbid his men to burn the house for he too was a Mason, just like Mrs. Anderson's husband who was away fighting for the Confederacy. This house and property has seen it all, every war and every trial our country has faced, and once again is actively celebrating the anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence. It is a glorious thing.

In the background inside this house, Aunt Rinda's House, where Susan and Jason live, I hear chickens chirping, even over the sounds of John Mayer downstairs... Susan and Jason have two Dominiques and 5 Morans in a large Rubbermade container in the upstairs hallway just a few feet away... They are about 3 1/2 months old now.

Pictures of all of this to follow once I'm home again and able to upload them to my computer.

Last night in Virginia, there were fireworks at the Martinsville Speedway. We could almost see them through the trees, but mostly only saw the colored lights reflecting off the clouds and heard the patriotic country music blaring from the Speedway's sound system.

We sat in traffic yesterday afternoon, on our way back from an attempted shopping trip to Greensboro, cut short by the fact that *nothing* was open in downtown, much to our total dismay, mine especially because the yarn shop was closed so I couldn't get any roving or new yarn for the rest of my summer projects that I have planned... Anyway, we were trying to get around the Speedway, as I said, on our way back to Susan's mother's house. It was hours before dark, and we were surrounded by old cars, some new cars, and not a few pick-up trucks, more often than not sporting Confederate battle flags somewhere either on stickers or in windows, etc. usually with several children in the bed or at least one very fat man with no shirt, Susan mentioned that the large number of people headed to the Speedway and the shops in downtown Greensboro being closed on the 3rd was strange (though not totally unexpected) because the 4th is a "Yankee holiday," so why all the fuss?... I think Lara conceded that point but also pointed out that the 4th is also an occasion to drink and to light things on fire and what redneck passes that up? (I thought, you know, that sounds like an awfully Yankee thing to do too -- Sherman and Grant anyone? -- But whatever...) Susan said that while, yes, we must celebrate Independence Day, we mustn't let it pass in total jubilation. That we, as Southerners, must rebel a bit and do a little serious work on the 4th, see to some business before taking the afternoon off for parties and fun. I am quite amused... And sure, why not? Might as well do something to mark the fact that we Southerners are a different breed than those north of the Mason-Dixon and we do in some measure resent their domination, etc. etc... Because try as some of us and some of them might to ignore it, there are major differences between the way we live down here and the way the rest of the country lives. Every region of our country has its difference and that is one of ours. We're Southern by the Grace of God, amen and hallelujah! Oh, yeah, and we're American by that same Grace too... Happy 4th everybody, Yankee and Rebel alike! ;D And whether you get all this Southern stuff or not (hey, Dad!)...

1 comment:

susannaheanes said...

had to chuckle at this one... very thought-invoking commentary on the 4th!

looking forward to your return -

also, love the knitting mees!

love, s