Friday, November 12, 2010

Some thoughts for a journal

I enjoy going through the museums of small towns and poking around and talking with some the people volunteering there.  There are lots of things from pioneer days of homesteading on the plains.  It helps me to appreciate how easy my life is.  Yet when I pause I wonder what kind of life people will have in 50 years, hundred years or more.  Will the life of the Jetson’s become a reality.

There are a few who lament for the simpler times of the past.  Homes are decorated to give it an early day look.  Discussions on homemade breads and foods, how to preserve and can foods, preparing foods and in general trying to live like great granma n granpa lived over a century ago.  Granny n gramps had to work hard and put in long hours those days if they wanted food, clothing and shelter.  There was no plumbing back then or electricity, central heat was the wood stove and no air conditioning. 

So when I hear people talking about the good ole days I wonder what they are talking about.  A myth arises from dreaming and the mind creates an ideal dream to strive for but is it possible.  There are bloggers on here and other spots that post blogs about doing things the old way.  There was one that found the Foxfire books from the hippie days.  Some city slicker college kids went to Appalachia and interviewed some the hill people on how they lived off the land.  Many people gobbled up this idea.  Upon closer reading and some aging of self, the leg pulling starts becoming evident.  There are some helpful things but lots of it is fiction.

Yet people dream of this life.  To live off the land requires lots of work and it is very time consuming.  Day break to sunset was a typical day.  No union insisting on breaks or a wage scale.  If one wanted a garden they had to work it, have animals for food, chickens, cow, goats or sheep for wool.  Raise cotton to spin and weave clothes.  Make needles and thread for sewing clothes.  There were no big stores back then to go buy things in.  Like the nursery rhyme said; the butcher, baker and candlestick ,maker..

The big business of farming and ranching has created a convenience beyond measure that gives most a generous life of leisure.  One can into a store, buy clothes, ready made or material, food ready made or easy to prepare and look at all of the gadgets to do all the home style fixins. 

 

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This is a bread box, here the loaves of bread were stored, along with the flour and other ingredients.  The counter is just a few inches deep and maybe two feet long.  Yet on here the bread, pies and pastries were prepared.  There were no large counters and cabinets to work from instead small side boards and the table.  No refrigerator, the sink was a small tub, water came from a cistern that was also a cool room for storing a few items.  The stove was wood fired, no gauges, a wet finger on the lid.

           Would I want to live like that, I don’t think so.  So when I hear people talking about living off the land I kind of chuckle.  I wander how many could make do without the modern conveniences of today.  Look at the machine I am using to put this together.  What a gadget.

      I have a garden but not to supply all my food.  It is nice to have fresh garden produce in the summer and I freeze some.  I also like squash and they keep in a cool spot.  Without the conveniences of today I would struggle to keep my self up fed.  I marvel at what my grandparents did and how they progressed but I do not want to live like that.  I wouldn’t have the foggiest notion on how to make material let alone sew a pair of britches.  If the world stopped producing electricity, I would be lost.

     Longing for the good ole days….. hah…. forget it….. simpler times…. that would be nice.

Anybody out there know how to butcher a steer?

Ya’ll Have a Good Weekend.

God bless you.

 

 

 

 

 

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