Thursday, June 11, 2009

Pig Tales N Trails!

I know Steve and I have talked about some places that we'd really like to see. A road trip - stop when and where ever we felt like it. I think I'd like to that for a month. We'd both have to give and take, because I know that he'd want to stop at hog farms of the many friends that he has met in the years that he has raised hogs and gone to state fairs and national shows. For me, he'd have to be willing to stop at antique shops and state parks - or other things of interest that would come up along the way. Even stop to visit relatives that we haven't seen in years. I'd like to go to the "Grand Canyon", "Yellowstone" and I know we'd both like to get to Alaska some time, and the North East coast/New England area. How we get to these places we haven't planned.

Earlier years my traveling was limited to going with to hog shows occassionally. Several times, we did go as a family, and it was fun, except if anything was done other than being at the hog show, I did it with the kids. No way was he leaving the hog show, which I understand - that's why we went. It was business on his part. But looking back on that now, that's okey. Leah, Stephani, Jessica and I had fun in Milwaukee WI where we went to the zoo and toured the brewery there. Kids thought the underground tunnels were cool and drinking the sample of non alcoholic beer was great! I got the real stuff! I don't have a clue how we did at the hog show - if we had any winners, or sold any for good money.

Another time, Bert Huinker and I had a blast when we ventured out for a day trip to Charleston SC leaving the guys at the hog show inland. Can't even remember the town where the hog show was at. We drove the "pig" truck to the city and parked it and walked all over the streets that had open markets - went on a short tour of old stately houses; saw the first fire station that was built - spent a little money and then as we were walking across a street, I spied a wool, burnt orange colored knee length coat with a fur color on a lady (her back was to us) and called out the name "Susan"! Would you believe, it was none other than Susan Ritts that I'd gone to junior and high school with. I didn't even know that she lived in Charleston. She was on her lunch time, and we visited awhile. Her husband was stationed in the Navy there. Oh what a small world! I'd have known that coat anywhere! Probably because I have a similar one in blue. Think it's still in Georgia's (sister) closet! I remember that I'd bought each of our girls something and bought a couple of hand woven baskets. I wonder if Bert remembers our little trip, and I wonder if Sue still lives there. Now that's a city I'd like to go back to. There was so much there we didn't get to see.

One time Steve and I were alone on a hog trip going through the Appalachian Mountains, and had truck trouble, stopped at a very small gas station. We were really with the hill people. I went inside and there were a two local guys there, already on the two only chairs, so I sat on the old fashion coke bottle machine. (remember the kind were the little old bottles were upright and you slid them to the left to get them out!) Anyway I learned about cremation ashes that night, as these two older men were trying to spook me out with a box of cremation ashes that had been delivered to the station and the relative of the deceased was to pick this box up the next day. They learned about Minnesota. They had never heard of Minnesota! Had no idea where Canada, North or South Dakota was. They knew nothing outside of their little hill billy world. At least the guy that worked there could help Steve get the truck going again. Bet that guy couldn't help these newer vehicles now.

Another time we had Stephani, Jessica and Daryn (nephew) with when we went to a hog show and sale in Indiana. Stephani was on crutches - had broken her ankle or foot. Kids rode in the back of the pickup (that won't happen again) - we had mattresses there and we had a window through to the cab of the truck. The kids had a great time, making sock puppets, singing, being goofy and then swimming in the motel pool (except for Stephani and her cast). I completely missed the hog show because I was watching kids swim.

When we'd go to these out of state hog shows, we would buddy travel with other friends. So there'd be 3 or 4 trucks with stock trailers going down the road together. Stoppng for gas, tail gating with water mellon for everyone, lunches together, and staying at the same motels. It was fun. If you only were going to show a few hogs (say less than 3) you sometimes just had them in the back of the truck that had a topper. One time, a pig lifted the topper door with its snout and fell out. We were behind that truck and that poor little piggy just bounced and rolled down into the ditch. He got up like nothing was wrong - just skinned up a little! Poor thing. Needless to say, they didn't show him or sell him. I'm sure he must have gotten stiff after that little episode.

Men that haul livestock can tell you alot of funny stories of mishaps on the road! We even have a son-in-law and grandson that have a good tale to tell about some 4-H pigs that went for a ride and got out at a intersection when they stopped at the stop sign. The pigs had a good ol time rootin around peoples yards close to that intersection. I think someone forgot to properly latch the trailer door. The guys didn't miss the piggys until they got to the locker plant approx 15 miles down the road. The police had been called by someone and were also out looking for these pigs, so that no one would hit one with a car. Oh, we don't let them forget this - it comes up quite often with alot of laughs! Steven even got rassed at the MN State Fair!

So our family trips have always had extra passengers following behind in the trailer!
We may not have been the traditional family or had traditional family vacations, but they still are fondly remembered. More piggy trip tales another time!


Growing Up A Country Girl said...

They use to have one of those Pop Machines at the Park Lanes bowling alley -- it was always fun to get a pop! I remember the Milwaukee trip...and I'm not sure if this was the trip. But on one trip we were quite aways down the road and we wrote a note thru the window to the front cab saying "where is Jessica's suitcase?" -- we couldn't find it. It was forgotten and was safely at home by the door. Lil' Jess got all new clothes on this trip.

West Side of Straight said...

Ya, you're right Leah - It was that trip. I'd forgotten that! Sounds like you were a bit jealous! - How could we been so insensitive as to not get you and Steph new clothes too.

Feelin' the wind! said...

Guess Leah would say I'm spoiled then, since I got new clothes!!!! LOL!!! I miss those trips, but Dad for you I miss showing the most!!! I remember all of the Aksarben trips and State Fair trips and the pranks we played on passer-byers and on the road. The laughs and good times we had, will never be forgotten. I hope I can make some great memories like that for Renee when she is old enough, who knows, we may be showing pigs here in Lousiana years down the road. I also remember when the luggage fell out of the back of the truck on the way to Indiana, as Steph Darren and I piled close to cab of the truck!!!!!!

Far Side of Fifty said...

Oh great piggy tales..the poor one that dropped off onto the road..LOL..only funny if you were not that pig! Cute missing pig poster too. Jo, I don't think it makes a difference where you go or what you do as a family, the kids will always remember that they were included! Hope things are going ok there today..sunshine and 73 degrees here today..with a little wind:)

g said...

An interesting recollection of past vacations. Isn't the whole idea of vacation spending time with each other as a family. I laughed and chuckled at all the stories. Interesting how everyones memories kick in and remembers something to go along with the main story; what fun!g