Tractor Show Surprises…

Larry is a veteran.

I know this as a fact, because as I sat on the rough wooden plank that substituted for a bench, my grape nehi at my feet and the breeze blowly gently under that covered porch of an old general store, Larry sat down for a minute to rest and asked me if I was a nurse.

“No sir, no nurse here.”

Larry shrugged and started to remove his shoe and sock, showing me a bruised foot and a large lump on his leg.  He told me about tripping on a step and kicking his leg, and how he was sorta worried about it now because it sure did hurt. 

And even though I’m not a nurse, I recognized a painful bruise, but that lump was what would worry me….it looked like what I thought a blood clot would look like and told him so.

He said he was gonna get through the rest of the day at the Tractor show, wiping his brow with the handkerchief tucked in the small square pocket of his overalls.  Larry looked out over the crowd, and I imagined him hurrying the day along, anxious to get off his feet and rest.

“I’ll go on to Charlotte to the VA on Monday if it don’t get no better.  They have an x-ray machine there and I can find out what’s wrong.  Do ya think it’s broke?”

“No, sir” I said, “but I think they should check it out, especially that lump on your calf.”

Larry laughed, because that lump didn’t worry him at all.

tractor-show-larry

These were the kinds of people we met on Saturday at the Tractor show….hard working farmers, and country folk with worn overalls, boots and leathery skin beneath a denim work shirt or a t-shirt.

tractor-show-blacksmithWe met Scott, who turned a piece of steel into a key ring right before our eyes, hammering the red hot metal with arms that looked like the very steel he was molding.  He was at ease in the 90 degree weather, calm and sure with the fire close by.  He was generous with his talents and knowledge, showing us each step in the process, as if we could pick up the hammer and recreate what he so easily made.

 

Three year olds competed in the tractor pull, boys and girls alike, some wearing cowboy boots and camo, others in flip flops and shorts.  When I heard the announcement of distances each competitor pulled,  I looked in surprise to my husband, who was smiling.  With distances like ‘7 feet, 3 inches’, I knew I had either not watched closely or the measuring they were doing was not something I was familiar with.  But they were simply adding a little fun to the competition and glory to a three year olds ears….the ‘feet’ part was merely an add-on.  

We watched the winners head to the booth to get their free ice cream cone certificate, 3 little boys in matching jeans, boots and cowboy hats, urging the smallest one on to the “Stairs of Victory”.  His smile was wide when the lady in the booth asked for his drivers license because she was sure he was a professional driver.

Men with thick gloves handled logs larger than they were, stacking and turning to get the trunk in line with the saw blade, which was pulled with a steam engine, just like the old days.  They thought nothing of the heat, the saw dust flying and the blade of a giant saw inches away.  A young boy, probably 10 years old, stood by ready to clean up dropped bark and splinters of wood almost as big as he was.  

There was music ~ 3 men under the shade from a porch of an old house, the flag flying proudly in front.  A banjo and 2 guitar players, with bales of hay for seats and the occasional camp chair close by, tuned up and prepared to entertain the folk that stopped by after the tractor pulling races were over.  

tractor-show-store-and-band

Ham and steak biscuits were on the menu, along with coconut pie, a chalk board propped against the edge of a covered shack with canned sodas sitting close by, ready to quench the thirst of the hot, sweaty crowd. Inside the general store, a long, lean cooler, full of bottled Nehi drinks, stood sturdy, as it has stood for years.   The two concession trucks offered what every kid wants…sno cones, cotton candy, popcorn and funnel cakes.  Sticky mouths and stickier hands were attached to little boys and girls and sometimes big boys and girls, too.  

There was a field full of antique and new tractors, each with a tag attached, the owner’s name prominently displayed, with facts and figures listed.  They weren’t for sale, but merely show, and you could tell a lot of them were ridden in off the field the day before.

img_6359

My feet were dirty from the grass and field, but my soul was full.  The people were friendly, kind, generous and happy.  As quick to share a story as their seat, the writer in me listened with a hunger for a time that will be whisked away one day.  My hopes are those 3 year old tractor pulling champs will still be hanging out in the field when they’re Larry’s age and have stories to tell their grandchildren about the time when…..

*******************************************************************

As always, I thank you for reading my words. I read every comment and appreciate your time so much! If this makes you smile, I would be very grateful if you’d share it for others to read, too.

 

Advertisements

39 comments

  1. Thank you for sharing with all of us, I truly enjoy everything that comes from you and always look forward to the next story. keep them coming!!!! have a wonderful day!!!!

    Like

    • I just came back and read this again. I love your writing, it always transports me right into the scene you’re painting with words. Much love and admiration

      Like

  2. What a great story! Makes me wish we saw more of this “down to earth”, “real” kind of interaction in today’s world. I wish things could go back to way they used to be, more simple, more personal, with much more interest in each other, when people actually talked to each other instead of texting! Thanks for the trip down memory lane, Sasha!

    Like

  3. Thank you for writing your stories. I love that when you were talking to the veteran, you called him sir. That speaks loud and clear the respect you have for him and for others. I have been to something similar before with a group of friends on our motorcycles. The small town welcomed us and made sure we were involved in what was going on. You just made my early Monday morning better.

    Like

  4. I love your beautiful description of the Tractor Show! I am able to picture it as if I was present. You are very talented & it is amazing to be a part of your tribe! Thank you for sharing.

    Like

  5. Your words pulled me right in beside you! I could feel the heat, taste the grape Nehi, smell the grass and hay around the tractors, and enjoy the fellowship of all the down-to-home people! Thank you!

    Like

  6. Wow, that was an amazing story. I felt as if I was right in there with you. Doesn’t get any better than the simpler things in life which cost nothing but our time and leaves a lasting memory. Thank you Sasha!!!

    Like

  7. I love this story..days of the past…you have a wonderful way of writing Sasha, i feel like i’m sitting right there with ya’. Love going to places like this ,,simpler times (sigh)

    Like

  8. Very nice story telling. It took me back to my youth at the small county fairs full of these wonderful things. Thanks for sharing with us.

    Like

  9. When you think you have a hard life and complain, you meet people with a harder life and never complain at all. My family on my Dad’s side were farmers. I spend a good deal of time with them. Very loving, giving, hard working people. I know I could never do it.

    Like

  10. Thank you for sharing this wonderful story with us. You are such a wonderful writer. I found you just a few weeks ago and look forward to your video chats every day. You are a positive inspiration for all of us. We are blessed to be able to share our lives everyday with you and you are a true “friend” in every sense of the word.

    Like

  11. I can remember going to one very similar to this only it was called a “steam show”!!! I had my first of many bags of fresh popped kettle corn !!!!! My father in law loved going to those !!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. So happy to have read this article today of all days. Nice to believe in the goodness and kindness of people you meet.i used to have a mini farm in Ohio and my kids competed at the local fair. Good times. Thanks for the rekindled memories. Glad you had a good time !

    Liked by 1 person

    • Linda ~ How cool your kids competed at the local fair! We always make sure to visit the livestock booths when we go, and talk about what it takes to get an animal there!

      Like

  13. Especially on this day, those are the kind of people that have and still do make this country the greatest. The morals they teach, the lessons they have learned and how to just appreciate the day God handed them. I hope that I have passed on these bit of wisdom to my son because these kind of people are the kind of people that I am !

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s