Sunday, June 25, 2006

West Pratt

I drove down through West Pratt yesterday and they've torn down Mrs. Hodges old house. I had sat vacant for many years and was is disrepair. She lived across the street from us when I was a kid. She was a square jawed no-nonsense woman that spoke her mind. Her hair was the color of a tarnished quarter and she wore it in a bun on the back of her head. The floors in her house, at any given time, were clean enough to eat off of. She and my mom were friends.
One Sunday in early May when I was about eight years old, a chicken snake wandered into our house. It was about five feet long. My sister went to get a glass of water and found it lying in front of the sink. To say she freaked would be a gross understatement. My mom and dad raced into the kitchen. My mom, who is not afraid of Satan himself, did not like the snake in our house one bit. Daddy reached down and caught the snake behind the neck and carried if off behind the shed in back of our house. I had a huge time teasing my sister. For days afterward she would jump like an Olympian at the slightest brush of a limb or string.
Several days later, while we were at school and Mr. Chicken Snake decided that he would have more fun at my sister's expense. Problem was, my sister was not home. Mrs. Hodges had come over to drink coffee with my mother and when they went into the kitchen, the snake was coiled around the leg of the kitchen table. Mrs. Hodges (even then she was older than Methuselah) was out the back door like a flash but she was back in with a garden hoe and she chopped that snake in to hot dog sized portions. Mrs. Hodges swept it with a broom into a long handled shovel that my mom was holding. They threw it into the outside toilet which was still in service at that time.
There are so many memories of those days in the West Pratt community and I'm not sure what brought this particular one to mind, so I thought I should write it down.
I hope you all have had a great Sunday.

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