Daddy Cuts More Than a Rug
Hardwood floors and linoleum were the floor surfaces in our house. At a time when most people had carpet, we didn’t. Our floors were swept and mopped daily, but in the Spring we had to get down to serious business. Waxing the living room floor was mine and Nene’s chore. We got down on hands and knees to apply the paste wax. Once it dried, we had to go back over it and buff off the wax by hand. It was a tiresome job, but the reward was in the beauty of the shine that remained for many weeks after. We were allowed to rearrange the furniture, if we so desired.
Mother loved to rearrange the furniture. I inherited this trait. She was particularly bad to change around the furniture in hers and Daddy’s bedroom. One day, she got into a fit of cleaning and furniture changing in the bedroom. The main thing she changed was that she pushed the cedar chest to the foot of the bed. She generally went to bed early, before Dad. We were sleeping peacefully when we were wakened by a horrible squeal, followed by Daddy hopping around the room yelling “Oooooohhh Lorrrrrddy!” My sisters and I scurried out of bed and ran to the bedroom.
Mother was laughing! You see, it was Daddy’s habit to come to bed with the light off, so as not to disturb Mother. It was also a habit to take a dive for the bed from the foot of the bed. On this night, he took a dive for the bed, not knowing that Mother had moved that cedar chest to the bottom of the bed. His long legs didn’t clear the chest! He hooked his toe right on the latch of the chest. I’ll never forget the sight of him hopping around on one foot, while holding the other. I’m sure it was painful, but we laughed anyway. Poor fella!
It’s nearly spring cleaning time again. I will be doing some paint-up, fix-up things around my house. Some furniture will most likely be repositioned. The incident with Daddy and the cedar chest reminds me to make sure that everyone in the house knows how to find their way around in the dark, and the obstacles that might be in their way.
I learned that:
1. Hard work never hurt anybody, and the payoff shines.
2. If you are going to make big changes, it’s good to tell the people whom they might affect.
3. No matter how hard you fall, you can pick yourself up.
4. Sometimes we stumble around before we find what we are looking for.