Flipping the Switch…At Last

MVC-025SWell, it is hard to believe. I am so excited because at last..at last!…we actually have electricity!!!! The power company had to set the pole right up in our front yard, but enough out of the way, so Ma won’t hit it when she is backing up the car. She doesn’t drive too well in that direction and once scraped the side of the porch and asked me who moved the porch. I knew better than to even try answer her!  The meter box is on the side of the house and Dad looks at it and watches it go round and seems pretty fascinated by it. His friend, an electrician has wired the house.

Ma is proud that she has a bona fide electric clock on the wall with its cord running down to an outlet over the kitchen table and a round fluorescent light right in the middle of the ceiling.  There’s a switch at the bottom of the stairs for a big light at the top so we can see our way better into the attic when we go to bed.  Dad has a reading lamp by his bed now and he says it is sure better than the old kerosene lamp and it doesn’t stink either when he blows it out at night.

Last week, Roland bought Ma a second hand refrigerator. Now this has to be the best thing ever for her!  He told Dad that he still had to keep his beer cold in the brook and Ma gave him “the look” so that is just where Dad keeps it!  It seems strange  not to see the tall metal white cabinet where we always have kept our cereals and canned goods.  Ma made provisions for them and she says having it is wonderful for keeping her meat cold!

Another wonderful thing happened last week. I saw Harold, who married my Aunt Vi, outside in his garden and he said he had something he bet I would like to see. He said to come over a little before eight o’clock that night and to bring anyone who wanted to come.

Rex, Curt and I went to Grammy Martin’s that night and went into her little parlor. There in the corner was a television set….I had only seen them in magazines!! I got so excited. We all sat and watched Dragnet in black and white and it was like having the movies right in your own house! I liked Joe Friday when he said, “Just the facts, Ma’am.”  Harold just kept grinning all the time. I think we all wanted to stay forever to watch this wonderful invention, but we knew it wouldn’t be polite so we thanked them and went home.

But since then, let me tell you, Grammy , Aunt Vi and I have discovered a great program. It is only fifteen minutes long but it is worth the hop and skip across the field. The man is named Liberace and he sits at a piano with his candelabra and he wears long tails, which he keeps flipping up when he has to move to start playing. Aunt Vi always giggles when he flips them! At the end, he looks right at us and sings, “I’ll be seeing you in all the old familiar places” ..well, let me tell you, Aunt Vi just giggles and giggles and Grammy says he is one fine piano player.

Saturday night is the best night, Grammy told me. I think Harold and Aunt Vi went dancing and Ma and Dad were off so I went over. Grammy did some fiddling with the knobs and after the picture straightened out, what did I see but two men pushing and shoving each other around a ring. They weren’t boxing that is for sure. Gram says, you’ll like this, Sandra, they rassle all over the place. Well, we got so excited and started yelling for the one we liked the best. I didn’t know Grammy could yell so loud. She never yelled that loud even when the pig got out..but oh, my didn’t those men throw each other around. 

The next men to come up were, Grammy said, great big men and I might not like them. They were what is called Sumo wrestlers. Well I didn’t like them at all, but this was better than sitting at home doing nothing. Grammy yelled some more and finally one of them came out the winner and his hand was held high for the world to see. I told Grammy it was late and I had to go home. She told me to come back and watch the rassling any time with her. I know I will.

I haven’t told Grammy and don’t think I will that I had a lot of bad dreams about those Sumo wrestlers. I don’t think I want to watch them any more, but the others I will yell as loud as she does.

I haven’t told Ma and Dad about my going over to watch the wrestling with Grammy. I know they wouldn’t mind, but it is kind of my secret time with her and we have a good time. I asked Dad if he had thought about getting a television and he said money doesn’t grow on trees, but if he had extra, he wouldn’t mind having a little DuMont stuck in the corner. In fact, he said he would put his Morris chair right in there and probably watch some westerns.

I think eventually Dad will give in and get one after he sees that Grammy has one in her parlor. Once you see a program, it is easy to want one. Ma says the dance crowd has really dropped off at Abner’s because everyone is staying home to watch a comedian named George Gobel. He has a round face and a crew cut and is supposed to be funny. She and Dad are wondering if this will be the end of the dance halls. I know that Ma sure is hoping that it isn’t.

So now we are flipping the switch like everyone else. The Aladdin lamp is store with the other kerosene lamps for when the power goes out. You know, nothing is perfect and for sure, country folks don’t take anything for granted.


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