Monday, August 2, 2010
A Road Less Traveled ...
Uncle Virgil Hunnicutt and Grandpa DooLittle were sitting on the porch at the general store deeply engrossed in a manifestly contentious game of checkers ... the old pair had sat there motionless for so long that neither could remember exactly who's move it was ... suddenly a bright red, convertible sports car came sliding to a precipitous halt casting plumes of powdery dust all over the place ... when that dust cleared there stood an inquisitive looking fellow dressed in what would be considered around those parts as a Sunday-go-to-meetin' suit ... "excuse me gentlemen, but if one were to travel on up this road, would it take one to the local post office ... and if so, could either of you kind gentlemen advise me as to the most expeditiously direct route thereto?" ... Grandpa DooLittle then asked "ain't you Birdie Mae Poteet's distant nephew what lives in the city ... don't she get her mail delivered right to her house?" ... a bit taken aback by Grandpa DooLittle's overbearing curiosity the young man answered "well if you must know sir, my Aunt Birdie Mae ordered a very expensive new hat C.O.D. all the way from Chicago, and simply doesn't entrust the local mailman with the delivery of such a valuable item ... so she has asked that I go to the post office, retrieve the hat myself and safely transport it to her post-haste and unscathed!"
Before Grandpa had the chance to again speak Uncle Virgil Hunnicutt chimed in ... now Uncle Virgil had dealt with Miss Birdie Mae in the past when he confused her front door with that of the Widow VanMeter's during a failed date thus bringing a sour dose of embarrassment upon himself ... but what goes around sometimes comes around ... "in answer to your enquiry young man ... why yes ... if one were to continue on up this road it would lead one to the post office ... however, the route is quite involved" ... the lad at once encouraged and in high spirits replied "great! ... allow me to grab pen and pad with which to notate your directions" ... then Uncle Virgil began "well you need to go on up this road for about five more miles until you see a big, red barn with Mail Pouch Tobacco painted on its side ... hang a right just beyond that barn onto River Road and keep going for about ten miles ... you'll see the river running the entire length of that road to your left and the swamp and woods to the right ... when you come to a huge oak tree on the left hang an immediate right through a gate marked "no trespassing" onto Cow Pasture Lane ... you'll stay on Cow Pasture Lane for at least ten miles until it intersects with Route One ... I don't think you'll have too much trouble making it through Cow Pasture ... just take it easy across the mud holes, ruts and washouts ... when you come to the end of Cow Pasture Lane you'll hang a right onto Route One ... Route One is a fairly smooth road, but it's narrow and crooked with no guard rails, if you would happen to plunge over the embankment you'll plummet at least a thousand feet before you stop plummeting ... stay on Route One for about ten miles until you intersect with the Main Road ... hang a right onto the Main Road and go about five miles until you see a large wooden structure on the left ... you'll find a United States Post Office just inside of that building" ... the young man thanked Uncle Virgil, climbed back in his car and forthwith hurried on his way up the road.
At once remembering that it's his turn, Uncle Virgil declared with a smirk "king me!" as he jumped two of Grandpa DooLittle's pieces and the game resumed ... well, the afternoon passed with little fanfare ... both Virgil and Grandpa each made at least one more move at checkers within that four hour period ... until out of nowhere came a convertible sports car skidding to a rambunctious stop nearly striking the wooden porch and sending clouds of choking dust all over the place ... its make, model and color all undistinguishable as it was covered with dirt, dust, mud and other various and sundry globs of goo ... when that dust settled there stood an angry, disgusted looking form nearly as begrimed as his filthy automobile ... those Sunday-go-to-meetin' clothes now unfit for even a late Saturday night ... "you purposely sent me on a wild goose chase ol' man ... I've risked life and limb, gone full circle and came upon no post office!" he seethingly declared ... as that smirk grew wider Uncle Virgil responded "oh the post office, well it's right here inside of the general store" ... Aunt Birdie Mae's distant nephew was now beside of himself "why didn't you just tell me that right in the beginning you old coot!?" he demanded ... "well boy, you didn't ask where the post office is ... your question was ... "if one were to travel on up that road, would it take one to the local post office" ... I do believe that I answered your question precisely and exactly!" ... by this time Grandpa DooLittle could no longer contain himself bursting out into an uncontrollable belly laugh as the furious and bedraggled young descendant of the storied Poteet family stormed into the store in search of the package containing Birdie Mae's new mail order hat ... and I reckon those ol' sayings of "what goes around comes around" and "be careful what you ask for, you just might get it" rung true that day all around DooLittle Hollar!