Thursday, September 11, 2008


I was going to post more about the little store today, but I think it may send Suzanne over the edge. I will spare her the torture (I know her emotions are raw) and save more tales and plans for another day. I do think it is probably time for me to head across the road and talk to the old owners and see what stories they have to tell. I think that old girl has seen a lot of folks and history pass through this old rural county.

Suzanne asked me a great question yesterday. This is from the comment she left-
In the south of my childhood the benches in front of the general store were referred to as the "Buzzard's Roost" because that's where all the old men whiled away the day, talking about old times and telling the tallest tales. Gee, are there any storytelling traditions out there anymore? My Uncle Murdoch could tell some terrific stories.

I love a good story. Really, aren't those the things that tie us all together as friends and families and weave the fabric of who we are. Stories, memories, histories. I've been raised on all sorts of tales- ghost stories that I've heard hundreds of times. Descriptions of days spent out in the tobacco fields, perfect descriptions (recipes) of the meals that were eaten after the long day in the field. Don't you love that expression the storyteller gets on their face when the words flood into their head and they can't wait to spit it all out- again and again. The smile that so often resides in the crooks of their mouth. Hey dad, tell us about that time...tell us about Aunt Ruby and how she could make a table walk...tell us about spooky place up at old Uncle Wankus' house.

I love stories. I can't leave without telling you the one thing about the old store that I do know, just one part of her story. Please forgive me Suzanne. When you first walk into the store there is a wood stove. Apparently, in the evenings the farmers would come around and they would pull up chairs around the fire and talk, and talk. Two of the old chairs are pictured below. Can you imagine the tall tales that were told? As it's been told to me, there were very few on these evening gatherings that didn't have some sort of beverage by the leg of their chair- a beverage wrapped ever so precisely in a brown paper bag. Oh the tales that must have been told.

So, I pose Suzanne's question to all of you today- Are there any storytelling traditions out there anymore? I think there are. Isn't that why we are all here- telling our stories. Today is certainly a day to think about stories, as we remember those that lost their lives on September 11, 2001. God bless the families that lost someone on this terrible day and God Bless America. We will never forget your stories. Please head over to Suzanne's blog today to read a special story about a special hero.


Rambling Girl said...

I can imagine there are plenty of stories that are tucked away in that store...If we only could hear them...Probably still can if you walk in there and just sit down in one of those chairs and be real quiet....

Yep that was the good ole days...if only people would quit trying to rush time and get back to what use to be...time.

Can't wait to hear more about your store...I am in love with it.

traci said...

i am sure there were a lot of old stories told around that store. you and your husband can even add some of your own. and when all us girls come out to help you get the store going again, we can add our stories. oh wouldn't that be fun. what would you put in your paper bag?

Living on the Spit said...

Email me the street the store is on and I will do some historical investigating through the resources I have at work...I love this place and want to know some of the old stories as well.

Big Hair Envy said...

My grandfather was the storyteller in the family. My sisters and I have tried to keep those stories alive with our children. They know them by heart!

Your store is fantastic :)

Suzanne said...

Oh gosh, when I saw you had a picture of the store again I put on my armor and headed on in anyway. HA. Thanks for all the kind words.

Here's my thoughts on storytelling in the modern age. You have to have time to spin a tale. They are incubated in the quiet of evening, after hours of nothing to do but sit and rock and think. People are always running from here to there and there's no time for a good story to percolate and develop to it's full-bodied form. My uncles spent many, many, MANY hours sitting in a fishing boat or porch sitting. Porch sitting (such as the front of your store) involved sitting for hours, giving a tip of the cap to anyone driving by and then that usually set off a tale based on whoever was in that car.

"Oh yeah, that's 'ole Cricket. He lives up near Possum Hollow road, just before the old Chambers place. Yeah 'ole Cricket sure could drink a few...back in the day."........something like that.

Thanks so much for jogging some great memories. I miss those porch sitters.

- Suzanne