2015-12-02 / Editorials

Don Lively


It’s Saturday morning.

Well, it’s probably not Saturday morning as you’re reading this.

But it is Saturday morning as the thoughts of what to write about this week formulate in the limited number of brain cells left inside my head.

Saturday morning in the Blessed South.

On this particular Saturday morning I am lounging on the west porch with a large mug of coffee, a medium sized bowl of grits and a small amount of motivation to do much more than lounge on the west porch.

My first thought after settling in is to ask myself why, in late November, are there copious amounts of mosquitoes still hanging around aggravating me? Shouldn’t they have returned to wherever mosquitoes go once the weather starts to cool? Is it possible for mosquitoes to evolve into a year round vexation?

Please Lord, no.

Off to the south of the wooded enclave I just heard a shot, either a 30-30 or a 30-06.

Somebody hunting deer.

There goes another shot, which probably means the shooter missed the first one. And there goes the third, which means desperation. You’d have to be one heck of a marksman to hit a buck, already spooked by your first two whiffs, through the pine thickets and scrub oak patches that I know exist where the shots came from.

No venison today ol’ boy.

LooseE, my worthless but eternally faithful mutt, heard the shots too. The first two merely caused her to perk her ears but the third got her curiosity up enough to mosey off the porch to the edge of the grass. A few sniffs in the general direction of the gunfire apparently satisfied her that she's protected her turf cause she’s already perched back on one of the Adirondack chairs.

There are two of them, the Adirondacks. They were handmade locally by a true craftsman and were given to me on my last birthday by somebody who loves me. They look as though they were made for the express purpose of adorning my porch.

I greatly admire the kind of workmanship that goes into making chairs like those.

And like the swing I am sitting in as I ponder.

It’s made of white pine. I bought it at a shop on the western slope of the Rockies. Another perfect fit for the porch. In the short few years that I’ve sat there swaying back and forth, the swing has become one of my favorite spots in the universe.

Let me show you around the rest of the place.

Right there is the stone walkway that I designed and built myself. Most of it is flagstone that I bought locally but right there is a piece of petrified wood that I found in Arizona. And over there is a chunk of red slate sandstone that I picked up near Moab. The Moab in Utah, not the one in the Holy Land. Down there on the end is one of the bricks that was used by Daddy and his brothers to shore up the dam at The Pond eighty some odd years ago. We unearthed it when we did our own rebuilding a few years back and now it’s a permanent part of my place.

Over there is my little barn. It was built by my brothers Willie and Urb, cousin Stevie and cousin UncleMike. And me. That ancient singletree and horse collar hanging on the west wall I found in a dusty antique shop in Denver. Nearly every Saturday I go in the barn, stare at all the stuff that needs to be organized, imagine where I need to put everything, then close and re-lock the door.

Maybe next Saturday.

There’s my fire pit.

The inflammable one, made mostly of stone because the one I built out of wood years ago burned to the ground.

Gone with the wind.

The iron ring where the actual fire goes was manufactured locally. The river stones that surround the ring came out of the Colorado River. I hauled them here a few years ago. The rest of the sitting area is made from chert I gathered near the Savannah, bricks from demolished houses, more flagstone and a few railroad spikes for decorations.

A nice oaky fire is hard to beat on an Autumn Saturday morning.

But now, inevitably, it’s not Saturday morning anymore.

Saturday afternoon has arrived.

Time to get to the chores.

Or, I could get back in the swing and ponder on those chores.

Decisions, decisions.

Don Lively is a freelance writer and author of two books of Southern humor, Howlin’ At The Dixie Moon and South O’ Yonder. He lives in Shell Bluff. Email Don at Livelycolo@aol.com.

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