Monday, April 2, 2012

On The Road Again

      Goodness it is the most perfect southern spring day here!  I had a great hair day today – very low humidity!  I almost wanted to stop by the store or my beauty shop just so folks could see how good it looked.  It seemed such a waste for the boys in the shop.  Oh well no matter.  My leather seats in my car didn’t scorch me as I got in to drive home from work today which means the temperature was at breathing level.  As summer rolls on in the south it can get hotter than Georgia asphalt and the air is so thick you can cut it with a knife. Lord have mercy I remember one of those hot summer days.  I was a young bride and my husband and I were traveling on a two lane road out in the country.  We were only driving about three hours away but it seemed like a trip around the world on that day.  You see our first car was an old metallic blue and white Dodge Charger.  Now it was pretty souped up and could peel the tar off the highway, but frankly it was a bit of an embarrassment.  You see we were traveling for me to sing at a little country church one evening.  I was in my Sunday best daring my hair to curl, and cursing my “limo” driver because the air didn’t work.  Also being the lady that I am I was wearing panty hose because I didn’t dare show up bare legged for such an event.  You do know that a MAN invented pantyhose don’t you?  Maybe now he is getting a clue just how hot these ungodly undergarments are!  Oh, the other thing I didn’t tell you is that the Dodge was a little thread bare.  By that I mean that the floorboard was a bit rusted out.  You could see the white lines of the highway as we barreled down the road!  This didn’t help because I had to sit right next to the door even as hot as it was so as not to get my high heels stuck in the holes.  And of course I refused to roll down my window so my hairdo would stay in place.  Truth is, even if I had rolled it down, my hair was so lacquered up it probably would’ve broken off before it moved an inch!  I’m not sure how, but we made it in one piece and didn’t look too worse for the wear.  I might’ve smelled like a pot of my Mama Rich’s chitlins from the perspiration (a southern lady does NOT sweat!), but I managed to sing my heart out with the eloquence of a nightingale.

          My goodness the stories I could tell from those days on the road.  Speaking of “the road”, as I told you I work around a bunch of tractor drivers and mechanics.  Our boys are responsible for the manicure of all the parks, main thoroughfares and streets of our city.  You really wouldn’t believe all that is involved in the work they do.  It is not just blindly jumping out there and cutting grass.  It is dangerous work!  I am actually quite proud of our boys because they don’t have time to slack on the job.  Grass grows way too fast and litter piles up too quick for them to take much of a breather.  Southerners are proud of our cities and we would not put up with them looking like a jungle, so my fellas do a fine job of keeping our city beautiful.  I can’t honestly say that some of the other departments are quite so motivated.  Once when my son and I were driving to church we came to a familiar fork in the road about three miles from the church.  At that fork was a stop sign.  Well at least I think it was.  Part of the S T O P was covered up.  Do you know what with? If you are a southerner you might guess, though I doubt you’ve ever seen it on a stop sign before… Duct Tape!  That’s right that gray wonder product that can fix anything!  We had the biggest laugh about that for the rest of the day.

“Hey Bubba…. Junior told us to go out to the fork at Howell’s Ferry Road and repair the stop sign there.”

“Have you got all the tools we need Leroy?”

“Tools?  Nah we don’t need ‘em.  I got my duct tape.  That’ll do ‘er.”

Just so you know there is a world of difference between a southerner and a redneck.  Bubba and Leroy would be classified as “rednecks”.  It is only a redneck that would never say “Duct tape can’t fix that”.  I wouldn’t want them to hear me say this out loud, but the truth is duct tape pretty much can fix anything.  So if you have something broken or even something bothering you tonight, just get some trusty duct tape or take a few deep breaths and “duct tape” your mind!  It is going to be all right!

Night night ya’ll!