Our lives are formed by decisions, some our own. There however allot decision that are made that effect us that we have no control over. These decisions effect out lifestyle, economic status ,our culture and even placing us in line for finding our mate, our likes and dislikes shaping our personality.
I going to talk about a What if in my life. This decision was probably made by my father with influence I sure from my grandfather. It certainly has had major influence on my life,even though I had nothing to do with it, it was before I had any say,maybe even before birth of little old me.
My Grandfather sometime in 1930s had bought a farm up in the Allegheny Mountains of Pennsylvania . It was a small orchard farm on the side of the mountain, Dad referred to it as a truck farm. I not sure what that means, I have no agricultural experiences. I remember listening to the tales about the snakes that climbed up the side of the barn to warm in the sun. About the time the revenuers raided the farm cause Pop-pop kept his lights on all night to make the chickens lay better, He was ahead of his time but was on his own wavelength , I wonder where I heard that before. I recalled the story about Pop-pop shooting a poacher in the rump for stealing some chickens, and watching the doctors office at the bottom of the mountain light up. Nothing was ever said to Pop-pop ,Grand mar (Grandmother) was the nurse of the town.
I been to the farm as a child a few times, I remember little bits a pieces. The town of New Paris was at the foot of the mountain and it was visible from the back porch of the house. The last I heard the house is gone, the well was left wide open, my cousins dragged some wood to cover it , only the foundation of the barn was present. the road getting up to the house was a single lane ,very steep as I recalled and very scenic . It would have been a haven for me and my paint brush ,a great place to live at this time of my life. I see the problem of living there if you where trying to make a living, in the winter driving must be a adventure that would make Indiana Jones a little queasy. Dad would ski down to School but getting home was much more difficult. He would talk about the house being right below the frost line, and the many morning he would wake up with snow on the bed. I think that why he was such a rugged and enduring individual. I on the other hand was raise in the luxury of Suburbia . Yes, I had my moment of need, but nothing like those before me.
The Korean War had broken out and Dad wanted off the farm, I gathered that he felt the farm life was not for him. I am sure my Pop-pop was devastated, matter of fact I know he was. Pop-pop would leave the farm from time to time to work in Philly as a welder in the ship yards. I understand he was really good at it, so they bought a home in Chester and moved closer to work. In so doing giving Dad a taste of civilization and sealing my fate as well. Pop-pop gave the farm, Not sold the farm to an land developer who promised to put him and grand mar in the retirement home that was suppose to be built on the site. There never was a retirement center put up, and Pop-pop and Grand mar suffered the fate of so many Americans who live to old, poverty.
Now instead of a life growing up in rural America , I grew up in suburbs , were I grew up with lots of kids, sex, drugs and rock and roll. I sure my values would have been different there, not to say vices of man would not find me there, it sure more likely to be abundant where I grew up. Up there kids would carry a gun to hunting or shoot at cans, not where I grew up,although it was mostly for show. I might have been picking apples for some money as a kid, instead I would pick albums off the shelves and bust for the door of the store.
What if Dad stayed on the farm, and Pop-pop never went to Philly. What If?