Sunday, August 04, 2013

At The Old Mill, May 1973

Wulp, today is Sunday, and that means that millions and millions (OK, 9 out of the 11) of GDB readers are taking a day of rest. "Goofing off" is more accurate! That's why I am posting two snooze-tastic pictures.

The old days. If this is what they used to grind corn, just imagine what they must have used to make donuts - that machine must have been enormous. I wonder what mom has in her cool and colorful Disneyland bag? I am guessing that it is an article of clothing. Inside the mill, guests are given free spoonfuls of flour to taste. The first one to be able to whistle the Davy Crockett theme wins a second spoonful!

I can tell from the look on this girl's face; she really wants to throw something into the water. A penny, a camera, the car keys, it doesn't really matter.


Nancy said...

I bet it is something nice to wear along with her yellow it!!

Melissa said...

I always told you kids I’d explain when you were old enough why Mama doesn’t come to Disneyland with us. Well, we talked about it last night, and we think you’re old enough this year. You see, Grandma Garner used to take Mama to Disneyland every year when she was little, just like I take you kids. They would go on Grandma Garner’s birthday on June 17, and Mama would pick out a special present for her at the gift shop in Frontierland.

You see, kids, back then people dressed a little differently then they do now. I mean, we didn’t wear top hats and bustles like the people in history books, or those crazy Steampunk kids that hang out at the bookstore. But we used to wear… well, ponchos. What’s that, Jimmy? No, not nachos; PONCHOS. Well, you see, kids, a poncho was kind of like a blanket with a hole in the middle, and you’d stick your head through the hole and just kind of walk around that way. I know! In public! Ha, ha!

There were little ponchos for kids, and great big ponchos for men, and medium-sized ponchos for ladies. You could buy ponchos in the store, or people made ponchos if they didn’t have anything better to do, or you could get ponchos in the Sears catalog. What’s that, little Jimmy? Oh, the Sears catalog was just something weird Grandpa Kelly used to keep in the bathroom, which was where he went to get some peace and quiet from little boys who ask too many questions. And a lot of ponchos had fringe on the bottom, which tended to get all tangled up with itself, and burdocks, and… and other things.

So, Mama and Grandma Garner went to the gift shop, and Mama picked out Grandma Garner’s present. No, I don’t know what it was. We’ll never know what it was. Well, I’m trying to tell you why, Jimmy, and I’d like to do it without stopping the car and coming back there. They stopped to look at the mill wheel, to see how our ancestors turned their grain into flour. Then, Mama looked away for a minute, so tee what was in the water under the mill wheel. That’s all it takes, kids, a minute of looking away from your parents. The fringe of Grandma Garner’s poncho got caught in the wheel, and before anybody knew what was happening, she was pulled into the machinery and ground into… well, you get the idea. They show that kind of stuff on TV nowadays, and Lord knows your Mama and I can’t figure out the parental controls to save our lives.

Your Mama stood there watching, helpless, as the water ran red and then clear again. All that was left when it was all over was the bag from the gift shop, and a few strands of orange polyester yarn from Grandma Garner’s horrible death poncho. They called Grandpa Garner at work, and he came and got her just as soon as his shift was over. And that’s why, every June 17 when your Mama bakes a cake for dessert, she sticks that gift shop bag on her head like a party hat, lets the sink run, puts a spoonful of flour in her mouth, and whistles “The Ballad of Davy Crockett” until she can sit down to the table without crying. Hey, look, kids, we’re here! Get your shoes on!

Chuck said...

Melissa, you are my hero.

Melissa said...

In all seriousness, these are beautiful pictures, and could have been used for Disney ads. They really sell the whole make-special-memories-with-your-preternaturally-beautiful-children angle.

Major Pepperidge said...

Nancy, it is the fringe that makes the poncho so awesome.

Melissa, your story could be the next "Sharknado"! It's got everything, sex, violence, car chases, giant monsters, adorable moppets, a wisecracking butler, a moody artist who is redeemed by love, drug addiction, a whistleblower, a ticking time bomb, a cop who is three days from retirement, another cop who is a loose cannon, a spunky gal who is smarter than all those snooty sorority members, and ponchos. Well, it has ponchos, anyway. Will Smith can play Grandma Garner, and Jayden can play Jimmy. It can't lose, and with a $250 million budget, we will be able to do the kind of special effects that will bring the whole thing to life.

It is embarrassing when the people who leave comments expend more thought and effort than the blogger does!! You're making me look bad. ;-)

Chuck, you mean I'm not your hero?

Melissa again, you are too kind, I don't think these are very interesting, but I appreciate the nice words!

Melissa said...

Major, you're on, but only if you and I get to play the two cops. I'll spring for the doughnuts.

Anonymous said...

The Mill, back when Disneyland had an educational aspect, under the veneer of having fun.

The scenario you paint, Major, sounds much like the weird routine at the tortilla factory in DCA, now discontinued. That had promise, but they didn't follow through.


Melissa said...

I loved that tortilla factory! Something about seeing all those shiny clean machines behind the glass made me feel like I was in the Willy Wonka chocolate works, only with tortillas instead of chocolate. (I was never much of a candy eater. Mom would always find half my Easter candy, moldy and uneaten in the back of the drawer at Christmas.)

And the fresh, warm tortilla sample was the best I'd ever eater. I'm from the East Coast, of course, but I did once eat a tortilla made fresh by a woman from El Salvador visiting her son who was married to my neighbor. It was better than bagged grocery store Frisbees, but kind of singed and lumpy.

Of course, her masa rica was from the Goya section of a rundown supermarket outside Niagara Falls, so who knows how long it had been sitting on the shelf absorbing New York air and wing sauce fumes. And then she had to mix it with water from the Niagara River which, let's face it, you can only decontaminate just so much, and being an authentic cook doesn't automatically make you a good one.

Or, maybe I was just so hungry after that educational walking tour of DCA that I would have eaten my own bleeding foot and thanked our chipper guide for the privilege.

Major Pepperidge said...

I never saw the tortilla factory, though I know that many people liked getting their fresh, warm tortilla. Hey, I thought that New York was supposed to be famous for their excellent water, and wouldn't Niagara Falls water be even better because it had been churned into a froth? "Wing sauce fumes", ha ha!