The View From Mrs. Sundberg's Window

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A Whistle And A Song

June 9, 2005

Listened to the show Saturday and it was not bad. I visited the Chatterbox during the show and was that ever something. I met some lovely people and learned so much about how the show works from Thomas, who does his best to say hello from behind the scenes. Interesting how for a while there would be a flood of comments and then pretty much a kind of silence during the monologue and the particularly lovely songs. I think I could listen to "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" every day for the rest of my life and not suffer one bit. It's like that with ice cream cones, too. I could eat them every day, no problem. And I'll never tire of fishing and strawberry picking and sitting out on the porch swing. Things I did awhile back when I had more time.

It's possible I could tire of birthday parties. I'm about there right now. We've had three in the past two weeks and I'm about to tip. The birthday itself is one thing, but the parties can do you in. That's why I adopted a "no-frills" policy. When I was a kid you had a party. You invited children to your home and had a little lunch and played a few games and then there were gifts and cake and ice cream and then you played some more. You didn't rent out a coliseum or a group of circus clowns or climb into hot air balloons. You had a party with a picnic table and hats and kids stayed a reasonable amount of time and then they went home.

That's about how it all went at the kids' parties. There was pizza because it's easy and most people like it. Lemonade and white cake with frosting and some balloons. The guests were polite and made use of sidewalk chalk and Frisbees and there was a game or two of Red Rover, Red Rover and Hide and Seek. Then halfway through party number three, Mr. Sundberg came around the corner down the block and drove on up to the house on an old red tractor. When I asked, What on earth? He slapped his knee and said, "Climb on, Darlin'!" The kids hollered and clapped and so I did and we took a ride around the yard while Mr. Sundberg kind of shouted about how he's always wanted a tractor for toolin' around and Mr. McMurphy is selling his farm and offered Mr. Sundberg the tractor for "a whistle and a song." "Just couldn't pass it up," he said. "You're not upset, now, are you?" I shook my head "No" and shouted back, But where we going to put it? "Pole shed," he replied. "Always wanted one of them, too."

So the kids all had tractor rides and the birthday parties are over for another year. The plans are for more of a pole barn than a pole shed, it seems, but it doesn't really matter much when such a simple thing can make a man smile that big, slap his knee, and holler the word "Darlin'."

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