On the way back, we passed a church named Settendown Road Church. Aha! I knew it. This is the South, after all.
My daddy is a funny man. I remember hearing his laughter often when I was growing up. He laughed with friends, with family, with strangers. He was always pulling practical jokes on my very gullible aunt. He can make you sit on the edge of your seat for the punch line to a joke you've heard a hundred times. The funniest things come out of his mouth. You just never know when to expect them.
Once at the end of a day, I asked if he was tired.
"I sure am," he said. "I've been up and down those stairs so many times today, if they'd been sandpaper, my legs would be worn off down to my knees." And he never even cracked a smile, until I nearly fell off the sofa laughing.
We spent the rest of the weekend with my brother and his wife is Hiawassee. They were having a biker's convention at the Georgia Mountain Fairgrounds. The place was already pretty crowded by Saturday. Driving home to Columbus, we passed hundreds of bikers going north. To Hiawassee? My daddy said,
"There won't be a stick of ground big enough to park a motorcycle on when all these folks get up there. One of those farmers could make some money if he rented out his cow pasture."
At the GA 400, we figured about 25 people every ten seconds passed through the toll plaza, on a Sunday afternoon. That comes out to a lot of money. I'm thinking about who gets the money, who distributes it, and what do they do with it.
Where do those quarters go?
I love traveling with my daddy. So here's a poem I wrote for him.
The Mechanics of Sound
Sitting on the fender, I watched him
beneath the hood of his pickup truck.
Dissatisfied with the hum, he’d tinker,
searching for a recurring motif,
precise rhythms hidden in the pistons,
smooth clicks, pitched
counterpoint to the road-ready purr.
Then he’d sit me in his lap to race
Mr. Tom’s mule down the fence-row.
I’d smile and wave while I victory-lapped
around Johnson’s pond to the highway.
Then I’d slide off his leg, lean
against his shoulder, and keep time
to his whistling tune.
Irene is hosting the roundup over at Live Your Poem.