Sometimes my man and I go on adventures and everything goes as planned. Other times, things turn out a little different. Well, today was one of those times.
I promised him dinner and great conversation if he would go with me to a garage sale that was an hour away. “Remember last year when you didn’t want to go with me to that garage sale and we ended up getting all of that good stuff?” I said. “Besides, the ad read, “Everything in the house has to go”. So you know we will find something that we can’t live without.”
Kiss on the hand.
Trees, large houses, horses
and then, Siri tells us to take a turn at the next road. What? Siri do you have the correct address? Siri, do you need to recalculate? I plug the address in again. Siri, again, tells us to turn down the next road.
Let me tell you why we were a little confused. The next right had us heading down a dirt road that had been partially washed away in the recent storm. A broke down car sat by the turn and looked as though someone had listened to Siri and decided it would be best to cut their losses and abandon their ride than venture any further into the awaiting abis.
Oh No, not us. We aren’t quitters.
We turn down the road. Siri quickly let us know that our destination was on the left. Then she fell silent. In front of us, sat an RV, a tractor with no tires, a box trailer with items spilling out and two tables with crochet quilts.
Now, most of the time, Jeremy would have driven by, given it a look and said something like, “I don’t see anything we need. Do you?” But nope, not tonight because I had assured him this would be the jackpot house and he trusted me. (Okay, so I should let you know that it’s June and I am batting 1000 at garage sales so I was due to strike out.)
We jump out of the truck and Jeremy starts walking towards the front door. That is when I noticed “Cousin Eddie” in the driver’s seat of the RV. Not a wave or smile. Just sitting there staring at us. Maybe, we were at the wrong house? Maybe, Siri had made a mistake. Maybe we should run, not walk, back to the truck. Oh, no, I was determined to make this worth our gas money. I made my way over to the RV. “Hi, we’re here to see your garage sale.” Without looking at me “Cousin Eddie” replied, “I sent one of the boys around to get their Ma. Go around to the back of the house.”
Yes, the garage sale is around back. How stupid of me. Okay, we will find the good stuff right around the…bam, there was Ma or “Catherine” as we will call her, coming around the corner. And the first words out of her mouth were, “I’m sorry I didn’t put my teeth in today.”
Y’all, what do you say when someone says that. “It’s okay.”, “Yes, me too.” or “I didn’t even notice.” I chose the first.
That would be the last two words I said for the next 36 minutes. “Catherine” had a LOT to say. We learned that she had recently lost 300 pounds, her teeth and most of her hair. We learned that her and her husband, the man in the RV, had 10 days to get out of their house because someone had given them an offer they couldn’t refuse. We learned that a rich couple had bought their house, land and partial barn. She also let us know they had taken the downpayment, bought a 20-year-old RV and were going on adventures with their three kids for the next year. That sounds great is what I wanted to say, but again, she didn’t give anyone else a chance to say anything. “Cousin Catherine” then told us that the only thing her husband remembered from growing up was building a retaining wall with his brother and fighting about it. That wall had caused so much fighting that the two grown men don’t talk today because of it. And then I said, “Wow, that must have been some wall.” My man looked at me with that, “Please don’t say anything else and let’s get out of here” look.
“Catherine” continued and invited us out to the partial barn that the family had been building together for the last 4 years. I’ll just say this family probably needs to not take on building projects. There she shows us four chairs she had sanded but that are broken, a dresser under a tarp in the yard that has water damage and no drawers, and some tools that had quite a bit of rust because of the partial barn. Like I said, this family probably needs to steer clear of building projects.
We took her break in the conversation to start walking back to the truck, only to have my new best friend, grab me by the arm and invite me into their 900 square foot treehouse that was minus a tree.
Okay, I consider myself accepting and can carry on a conversation with a stick, but I was starting to get a little uncomfortable now. And my man, he was just going along with me because I think he was scared for my safety.
This house was by no means ready to be emptied in 10 days. There were boxes lining each wall from floor to ceiling. There were grapes on chairs, food in bowls on the floor and shoes, clothes, and unidentified bags of whatever laying around on the floor…every inch of the floor. Things were so bad in this house, that the family dog, was carrying around a red solo cup and to be honest, I was scared to look inside of it. “Cousin Catherine” let us know that she had watched a lot of Fixer Upper and had worked on this house to make it look like something Chip and Joanna would be proud of and did I notice the shiplap on the wall?
This is when the story became too much for us both. “Cousin Catherine” wanted to show me a few things on her phone. Pops of color she uses to decorate during the holidays, a table she built in the partial barn, and the future money-making idea she was ready to act upon. But the Lord truly tested us when she said, “I’m a really classy lady. See, here’s a picture of me with teeth, hair and support bra.”
My man jumped into action, said we needed to leave and would give her a call tomorrow after we talked about all we had seen. (If she only knew that we had to pull over on the side of the road because of all we had seen!)
She, kindly, let us know about a family bar down the road that had great chicken fried steak and we wished them luck in their future.
Can’t make this stuff up!
I’ll be leaving the garage sales to my man for a while and stick with painting.
PS: And it was a great family bar that didn’t have child labor laws because a 7-year-old showed us to our seat. But that’s a story for another day!