|A Few Apples - Made for a Merry Christmas|
I called this a Christmas story because it happened at Christmas and it is a True story.
Not that it makes any difference but this is a true story and it is pretty much as I remember it. The best I can recollect it was in 1937 or 38'.
Times weren't good for a young man with marrying on his mind but love over rules most obstacles. Even in hard times, people were marrying and giving in marrying.
I recall one instance when I was about seven, I met up with several of those men I knew; and one of them was selling what looked like balloons for ten cents each.
Since I didn't have a dime I didn't buy one and besides I thought it was too much for a balloon so I left.
That being said, Jay was just the opposite from his brothers. The time came when Jay found a girl he liked, and she was as shy as he was. Her parents were very strict, and she was very obedient. Her parents didn't have much but were as frugal as one could be. Since she was used to having very little the fact Jay didn't have anything didn't bother her.
Jay got along with Cyn's folks and after a while they were wed. It had taken Jay awhile to save up the two dollars for the wedding. It was a dollar for the license and a dollar for the minister. He might have done it for less but the minister had to eat also. Cyn's folks lived in town and Jay moved in with her folks.
Jay managed to earn a little money to help the family, and then he had the opportunity to become a share cropper. He had been raised on a farm so it was a good fit for him. The problem was the farm he was going to work on was ready to be harvested, and he couldn't get a share of the crop so he had to work for low day wages.
The owner had to run off the previous fellow who had been working there because he wasn't doing his job and left everything in a mess leaving the farmer without funds.
This first year was going to be touch and go. The good part was there were some range chickens who fed themselves, a cow, and a couple of apple trees. There wasn't much food left except a little flour in the bin and some lard in a lard stand.
Cyn's folks gave them some of the can goods they had put up during the summer and the farmer threw in a couple sides of fat belly. There was a tater patch that hadn't been cared for, but they managed to find quite a few taters which they put away in the cellar for use later.
With a cook stove, a fireplace, a couple of coal oil lamps and a bed they were pretty well ready for the long winter. Jay had cut enough wood for the fireplace and cook stove and stacked it on the porch where the snow wouldn’t cover it up. The cow was just about dry but she was going to calf in a month or two so they would share the milk with the calf.
It was the day before Christmas and they didn't have anything special for Christmas dinner. The sun had come out and Jay was looking through the chest of drawers the former tenant had left, and he found seven 22 cartridges. He decided to go hunting and see if he could get some food.
With the seven bullets he shot seven rabbits and took them to the general store and asked how much he could get for them. The store owner was actually his uncle but they weren't very close. He said he would give him 25 cents cash credit for each of them so he had a dollar and seventy five cents to spend.
Since they never had any children it may have been the best Christmas they ever had.
The facts are there and they will never change even though that was seventy five years ago. RIP Uncle Wiley and Aunt Cynthia.
This post is shared at “Tell Me a True Story.”