It’s been a long time since I’ve tried to sleep without air conditioning. Why is it that the A/C has to wait until mid-July to conk out? Couldn’t it have done this in April???
But, as I notice the little runnels of sweat forming on the back of my neck, I can commiserate with Rose. Summer is a hot and sticky time of year. Sometimes, we of the A/C generation forget that.
Not that I’ve always had air conditioning. No, you young whippersnappers;
We take lighting for granted.
The sun goes down; we flip a switch. Instant illumination. Sure, sometimes the power goes off and we have to “rough it.” Candles or hurricane lamps for a few hours, a couple of days, sometimes longer if you live on the Gulf Coast and it’s hurricane season (there’s a reason they’re called hurricane lamps).
And while urban America was almost completely electrified (eek! that sounds painful) by 1929, it would be well into the mid-30s, and even the early 40s, before electric power found its way to the farms.
So poor Rose
This morning I started a load of laundry, then came upstairs to work on this blog post. In a minute, I’ll go downstairs, move the load to the dryer, then enjoy thirty minutes of reading while I wait for the clothes to dry. Another fifteen minutes to fold and Voila! Laundry Complete.
Can I tell you… Rose is more than a little jealous of me. Not only does her wash day routine take longer than two hours, every bit of which is spent on her feet, there’s not a blasted book in sight anywhere.
No, if ever there was a chore designed to make a poor farm wife wish she’d never left her posh upper-middle class life, laundry is it!
And no wonder. Just look at all the steps involved, Continue reading
Rose has been feeling a tad sympathetic with all those on the receiving end of this late winter / early spring snowstorm. She knows just how that feels… Continue reading
Pardon me while I get maudlin…
Yesterday, I read this in the 1930 diary I have: Had 16 little piglets today, but the old mother laid on 4 and killed them.
This made me sad. Especially if you’ve seen the cute piglet pictures I posted here. But it also got me thinking about how common death is, especially on a farm. And especially in the 1930s.
Well, it’s not a giant leap from cute piggies dying to human mortality… Continue reading
One of the tools in a writer’s arsenal to develop a fictional character is the Character A-Z exercise, where, beginning with the letter A and working your way through to Z, you write from the character’s POV (point of view) about whatever topic comes to mind for the letter at hand. Because, there comes a time when research has to stop and you just have to get into the character’s head to see what makes them tick.
Rose and I are embarking on just such a journey. Care to come along? Continue reading
Forgive me for the Skynyrd earworm.
I have this wonderful reference book, Never Done: A History of American Housework, that I’ve been reading. In the chapter “Fetch a Pail of Water,” the author talks about all the things for which our ancestors had to haul water to accomplish. When I came to the part about baths, I stopped. It seemed like way too much work! Continue reading