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Thursday, September 4, 2014

PA WAS A RAMBLING MAN


This is a true story and not continued. 
A New Continued Story will begin Soon - -

 
It was somewhere along the time that the WW2 was winding down that my pa had another rambling spell come on him.

Pa decided to take a job in South America installing machinery for a manufacture of cotton mill equipment. 
Along with the newly purchased machines  came someone to see that it was installed properly which meant that the master machinist did most of the work. 
The job was to be a couple of year’s project.

The only problem was what to do with a wife and two kids one of which was me.

Since we were in California at the time Pa decided that he would leave us in Tennessee where my mother was born and had relatives there.  He bought a small house and left us there with a nearly new car.

This didn’t help his marriage situation that was already shaky and shortly after he left my mother filed for divorce.

I decided that my eighth grade education was good enough for me and went to work logging and working on a farm.

After my pa finished the project in South America, he came back to the states to pick up his car.

Let me say that while he was gone he sent enough money to my mother to get by on but when he returned that stopped and she had to go to work.

Along with a job she also got a new boyfriend and eventually married him.  He wasn’t a bad sort and was always good to me.

My pa thought that I wasn’t going to amount to much the way I was going so he decided to take me with him to his new job in Salem Oregon and teach me all about the textile industry.

The only drawback was, I was only fifteen and had to be sixteen before I could be employed. We started out from Tennessee and the tires on the car weren’t very good.

They were recaps and the recapping industry was still in its infancy. Their equipment didn’t do a very good job and the tread would in many cases peel off after a few miles of hard driving.
Around town at slower speeds they were a lot better.

You have to understand you couldn’t buy tires for they were used for the war effort and you couldn’t buy recaps without going through a long process and get what amounted to a permit from the government.

This took a considerable amount of time. We managed to get over into the heartland of the country when the tires started failing. The weather was in excess of 100 degrees with high humidity and air condition was not one of the extras offered on cars in those days.

There was no end to the unkind words Pa had for my mom for wearing out the tires on the car and putting the junk tires on it.  We would patch them up while sweat poured off of us and get a little further till it was obvious we had to get at least one tire for the spare was on the car already.

We barely made it into a station and the owner said he couldn’t sell us a tire because of government regulations.
After some useless talk he said he could rent us a tire but we would have to return it. A deposit of $25.00 would be required until we returned it. So we rented the tire.

Both the station owner and my pa knew he would never see us again but he got $25.00 for a$2.00 dollar tire.

Somewhere just beyond the Texas border my pa saw a woman hitch hiking and he pulled over and picked her up. After an hour or two she asked if she could ride in the front seat and at the first stop we made I was told to get in the back seat and she got up in front. This really angered me but I didn’t want to cross my pa.

We crossed New Mexico and by this time she had moved over to the middle of the seat and had her arm around my pa’s neck. I couldn’t hear much of their conversation but I got enough to know she was willing to spend the night with him if he would let her ride all the way to California which was our first stop on the way to Oregon.

At dusk pa took her out to the city limits and bid her farewell. We then got a room nearby for the night. As I got out of the car to get in the front seat I saw her walking toward a service man who was hitch hiking and she said; Hey sailor! That was the last we saw of her.

She had worked on pa the whole day but he didn’t buy what she was selling.

I later wondered what the outcome would have been if I hadn’t had been along for pa was known to be fond of the women.

We got to Oregon and my pa went to work at his new job. He made arrangements for me to go to work but I had to wait till I was Sixteen which was three months away. I worked in the harvest in Salem and made pretty good money.

We lived in a house where they rented some of their rooms and pa became friendly with a woman who lived there. Something made her think pa was going to marry her but she was badly mistaken.

Perhaps it was favors she bestowed upon him. Just before I was to go to work and learn the textile business something made my pa mad and shortly after he quit and my career in the textile business was over.

As we left there was a lot of squalling by the woman who was friends with pa but we were soon out of earshot.

We drove back to Oakland California where I had several relatives and after a short time pa headed back to South America leaving me in an apartment we had rented for years. The rent for so cheap pa had kept it even though he wasn’t there. He paid the rent up for a couple of months after which I had to move out.

I almost never heard from him after that and saw him once just before he died.

My Pa was a rambling man.

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