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The Ways of The Old Folks

Most days it occurs to me that if we all put down our phones, and took to the ways of the old folks; life would be simpler. Not only would we actually see each other, and ask how their day was we would communicate in a way that we currently do not. Not many of us take the time to put pen to paper for a letter to a friend; we send a random text, e-mail, or a message from messenger. When was the last time you wrote a letter to someone? That you really put down a caring, thoughtful letter? I can tell you that i just did this recently. I saw an article in GRIT magazine, someone looking for like minded individuals to become pen pals with! I suddenly felt compelled to write this person, and bond with someone so far away. I am anxiously awaiting a reply letter. Taking the time to write with pen and paper was actually quite relaxing and enjoyable. So, all of you… ask yourselves when was the last time you wrote a heartfelt letter to another human being that you did not know.

For me it had to be since elementary school. I had a pen pal that lived in Oregon. I believe her name was Mary. I remember distinctly the smell of the letters when they would arrive. Sweet, with a hint of leather. I didn’t know why, but to me it was the smell of connection to this girl across the country. Side note once the nuns found out my pen pal was not Catholic, but Mennonite I couldn’t write to her any more. Truth be told I did still write her. Just from home away from the prying eyes of the nuns that loved to slam my fingers in my desktop as punishment. My arthritic fingers can tell you now how much of a day dreamer I was as a child…

I have letters that my grandfather wrote home in the war, and letters that family in England wrote to him too. They are all tucked away in the filing cabinet at home. Now that I think about it maybe I should unearth them, and give them another read. I remember one cousin of my grandfather’s going into elaborate detail about his garden, and the great debates between him and his wife. It makes me chuckle just thinking about it. Indeed it is on the list now to get those old letters out. It gives me an idea that maybe I should compile those letters, and turn them into a book….

Another way of the old folks is a home cooked meal. How many times are we drawn to the simplicity of a TV dinner, a boxed meal you just add water to, or the ever present drive through burger? How many of us are over weight, have high cholesterol, triglycerides, and are diabetic to boot because of the love of those damn fries? Those blasted fountain pops? I could go on and on about the devil we call processed food. We pump our children with juices so high in sugar that we wonder why they are also over weight. I watched a “documentary” or TV show with Jamie Oliver in it. All about the amount of sugar, and crap we allow our children and ourselves for that matter consume. It was eye opening. When he showed that all the sugar in chocolate milk served in school would over fill a whole school bus; I was sold. I haven’t had chocolate milk since.

Most people are horrified that my son had never had a twinkie, a ho-ho, a snowball, and the Hostess delicacies of our youth. The fact that he didn’t eat poptarts every morning before school was another finger wag in my direction. Can you believe the gall? I limit their cereal intake, and instead make them breakfast burritos or breakfast sandwiches made with the eggs from our own chickens. The audacity of me!

Adding further to people’s dismay… I cook. Not just every once in awhile, but every day, every meal. I enjoy it, and love knowing that I am doing my part in keeping the “old ways” alive and well. When it comes to supper I try to serve a balanced meal with a veggie, but yes I will admit that sometimes I forget the veg. After all I am human, and susceptible to that fault. I love making supper especially; as long as everyone stays out of the kitchen. For some reason the kitchen seems to be a magnet for the little people, the dogs, and Rooster. With the walls closing in on my personal space and relaxing task of cooking I find that I become anxious. I don’t know why, but I like control of the kitchen (among other things) and the meal itself. Yes, Rooster always asks if he can do anything, and my answer is always “I don’t think so, thank you though.” I honestly just want the space to myself, and can’t say that without sounding rude.

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