For years my mother has told me she wants me and my brother to go through the stuff she removed from my grandmother’s house, and take what we want. She had some things set aside that she thought we might be interested in, and I always mumbled “OK,” knowing the day was safely off in some murky, ambiguous future.
But while we were in WV this past weekend, that day finally arrived. I was required to root through boxes of old stuff, and get all sad about my departed grandmother again. Fantastic.
She was one of those rare people who never had a negative word to say about anyone, and was pure good, as far as I could tell. She was a great cook, a real friend, and always there. Going through her belongings and dredging-up the feelings of loss again wasn’t exactly my idea of fun. But I had no choice in the matter, not really.
And, shockingly enough, it turned out to be kinda fun… I kept shouting, “Oh god, I remember that!” and “Holy crap!!” while Toney dozed-off in the background, from sheer boredom.
I think my mom wanted me to cart most of it away, but I only took a few small sentimental things. Some of the stuff was off-limits, because she wanted my brother to have it (I’m not sure how this was decided), but I think she was hoping I’d take the rest.
For instance, my grandfather’s copy of the Warren Report. What would I do with such an item? Seriously. I’ll tell you what I’d do with it… I’d take it from one of my parents’ closets, transport it to Pennsylvania, and put it inside one of our closets. I didn’t really see the logic in such an exercise.
I did make one excellent score, though. Check it out. That thing has an interesting history, which I’ll tell you guys about at a later date. Plus, I love old radios, old time radio shows, and all that stuff. If there was ever an item CRYING OUT to be included in the Bunker Collection, that’s it. And now it is home.
Do you have any stories to tell about sorting through a departed family member’s belongings? Was anything interesting or surprising found? Tell us about it in the comments.
On Saturday we went to Carter Caves, in Kentucky. We went years ago, and it was pretty cool. On the previous visit we walked through some large caverns, saw an underground lake, etc. It was a good time, and somebody suggested we return on this visit.
However… there was a long wait until the next tour for the big caverns was supposed to start, and nobody wanted to hang around for it. Well, nobody but me, anyway. I mean, what else were we going to do? Go back to my parents’ house and watch even more HGTV?
But whatever… I was overruled, and it was decided we’d tour something called X-Cave, instead. It was described as “narrow passage,” and I didn’t care for the sounds of that, not one tiny bit. I was afraid I might get inside that shit, have some kind of claustrophobic freak-out, and throw myself into the “Devil’s Anus” bottomless pit, or something.
Indeed, after the guide opened the steel gate at the front of the cave, and we entered that smelly hole, I was fearing the worst. The ceiling was really low, and kept getting lower. I thought we were going to have to crawl through there, but it finally got a little taller.
We had to walk single-file, though, and my gut was brushing up against 750,000 year old formations. I was worried I might destroy a national treasure with one of my love handles or ass cheeks, and had to be on high alert at all times.
I’m surprised they allow people to walk through that thing, without signing a disclaimer or something. There’s jagged rocks everywhere, the ceiling kept coming down to roughly shoulder height, and the path was an obstacle course, like something off Wipeout. It was crazy.
And my mother just had knee replacement, a few short weeks ago… So, I was worried about that, as well.
But it was interesting, I guess, and nobody had to be airlifted to a hospital or anything. The guide was funny, and had a Southern accent so pronounced he made Goober Pyle sound like Paul Harvey. So, it was pretty good, but not great.
I missed the underground lake, if you want to know the truth. I loved that underground lake… Here are a couple of pictures, to give you a general idea of the atmosphere.
Oh, and at one point I sneezed extra-loud (I love doing that, I had one inside a corn maze years ago that’s still family legend), and my Dad said, “Good god, Jeff! You’re going to cause a cave-in!!” And everybody laughed.
I didn’t know this West Virginia stuff was going to drag out like this, but I’ll continue the story tomorrow.
See ya then.