Monday, September 18, 2006

Birth Place

I know within a few feet where I was born. I'm not sure why, but I find it strangely comforting to know this. On a cold grey winter morning, on January 15th 1951, Dr. Baker walked the hundred yards from his house, which sat next to Horse Creek, to our house and delivered me into this world. I believe, without benefit of any scientific proof, that the time of birth (early in the morning) is why I am an early riser.
The house was an old house with rough pine board siding and heart pine walls and floors. It sat at what is now the intersection of Old Dora Road and the Cordova-Dora Road. Troy Morrison and his family lived there after we moved on and his family was the last family to inhabit the house.
The old commissary which is where many of the miners that lived in the area shopped, was close enought to hit with a slingshot from my house.
The mining companies created a temporary currency called clacker which miners could use to buy things at the commissary. They could get clacker, which was like a loan against their paychecks, and buy food clothing and other necessities to get them through. Many miners would borrow against their paydays to the extent that by the time payday rolled around, all the money went to the mining company. It was a vicious cycle.
Thus the line in the old song Sixteen Tons
"St. Peter don't you call me cause I can't go
I owe my soul to the company store."

A while back Ol' Buddy and I were riding around on a laid back sunny Saturday afternoon and we stopped by the old birth place and sat for a long while contemplating the past and the future. It felt good sitting there. At one time there was a gigantic old black walnut tree that stood in the yard. Back behind the house was an artesian well that flowed a steady stream of ice cold water which came from somewhere deep and it tasted sweet and pure.
While we sat there I thought to myself.....this was a good place to be born.

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous6:24 PM

    I was born in a good place also - our Red Star Hill home where little bro still lives. A very special place indeed!


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