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Sunday, January 30, 2011

UNDER THE OLE TIN ROOF

What we call a tin roof is most often a galvanized sheet metal roof.

These types of roofs were common in the south on the cheaper homes and did the job.

Along with millions of people who have slept in these houses, I remember all the little things about them. Every so often they needed some maintenance, like re-nailing them where the nails backed out and the sheets began to loosen up.

You either did this or you would find your roof in a ditch somewhere all bent up after a wind storm, and the house would be soaked if rain came with the wind.

As the sun came up, the metal would begin to expand, and the squeaking and screeching would start. It was much like waking up when grandma was beginning to stir around and start breakfast, with the skillets and pans banging. What a sweet sound that was, for soon the smells would follow of coffee, biscuits baking, and bacon and eggs a frying.

After supper the reverse would happen as the metal began to cool and shrink ever so slightly. That sound was the signal to prepare for bed.

These houses were very lo-cost with no insulation to dullen the wonderful noises these roofs made especially when a storm would pass through.

Sometimes the rain would fall so hard you couldn't hear what people were saying unless they shouted and if it started hailing you just forgot it for the noise was deafening.

Along with the rain came cool damp air, when you breathed it was like taking a drink of water that refreshed like no air condition could do. It felt like you were completely enveloped with love. At nighttime the comfort of the rain pelting the metal roof seemed to say; “All is well in the world,” and you slept the sleep of the righteous, feeling safe and secure.

As a child, it seemed like me and that ole tin roof was one.  It carried with it a feeling of caring and belonging, where the animate and inanimate had become as one.

Today we have lost the ole tin roof interactions for present day roof coverings are quiet and the insulation mutes the rain noise. Added to that, we live in a noisy environment with all the appliances, television, computers and hi-fi blasting away.

Still in my memories form time to time, and I slip away back to the era when I loved to hear all of the sweet sounds that came from out of the ole tin roof and am refreshed once again. It helps me retain my roots and sanity in this day.

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