"Who says you can't go home", "Up on the ridge", "I'm from the front pew of a wooden, white church"... OK, you get it. Just about every country song ever written can somehow describe where I grew up and, to some extent where I still live.
My parents' house is in the middle of the woods on a two-lane road on the outskirts of two tiny Pennsylvania towns. Those who have ever heard the expression Pennsyltucky, have a good idea what I'm talking about. To be honest though, I really only use that phrase to describe the scenery and lack of retail and dining establishments in a 15-mile-radius. My parents' house is a beautiful Victorian-style home that they built when I was seven years old.
That's not to say that a trip "out on the ridge" wouldn't net you trailers with tires on the roof, six dogs in one yard or an entire fleet of quads sitting in a person's drive way but, that's not my reality.
Last night the LFW and I went to dinner at my parents' house. I was greeted with a mojito, (or as my mom mixes them, white rum and mint leaf floating on top for garnish!) on the back porch to sip before dinner. Dinner was chicken, and the side was tomatoes from the garden, mozzarella cheese and italian dressing. It was perfect and exactly what I grew up on. Everyone was a bit excitable and eager to start the weekend so, after dinner we got a little country.
My dad lined the bed of a Rhino (side-by-side quad) with old blankets while I filled up a little cooler with a six-pack of Bush Light beer and my sister's boyfriend made sure he had his new 22-gauge shotgun. I hopped in the driver's seat, LFW beside me and the kids rode in the bed.
We tore off down over the hill in to "the hollow", about 10 miles of abandoned strip mine. We splashed through every mud puddle I could find until we got to a beaver dam that had been there since I was little. We skipped some rocks, shot at some trees and LFW lit up a cigar. When my sister mentioned there was an actual shooting target around the bend, we all piled in once again and LFW tore off down a road he'd never seen before.
When we got to the high-wall with the target, I laughed. What kind of redneck got drunk enough to put a garbage can lid secured by a roped on the side of a flat rock wall? I'm still not sure how that thing got there! But, we shot at it. My sister even took a few shots and I out-shot LFW.
A few more miles down the path, 2 beers, a walk across and abandon railroad bridge and the sunsetting, we remembered my mom was going in to town to buy s'more supplies. That was the end of our trip in the hollow. We got back and were greeted by Rufus, a fire, s'mores, more beer and even mountain pie supplies! It was the kind of Friday night that's good for the soul every once in awhile and I'm so grateful "That's where I come from."
Until next time!