Uncle Cran gets bombed in Viola!
Uncle Cran has sent us another one of his Adventures-in-the-Ozarks stories. This one's kind of lame . . . but so is Uncle Cran these days. Anyway, this story recounts the day that Uncle Cran got bombed in Viola -- a day to live in infamy. Let the story begin . . . after a couple of typical Cranfordian delays:
Your hope is fulfilled, Uncle Cran, for this story of violence in Viola has already expressed everything that I might otherwise have needed to add . . . though I have seen fit to contribute the appropriate, bracketed words that label your epilogue so that I might indicate the degree of empathy that I truly feel.While recovering from my latest adventure, Steer Wrestling, which resulted in a victory for the steer and a broken femur and new titanium rod and ball inserted into my right hip socket, I have been doing a lot of reading. One book in particular, loaned by a neighbor, is a history of World War II. This 800+ page documentary brought back a memory of my sixth year, as a first grade student at Viola Elementary School, Viola, Arkansas. It made a tremendous impact on me at the time, but had faded somewhat in my memory through the years. I now recall the terror in my childish mind that day.Prologue:STUPID IS AS STUPID DOESI have always been somewhat gullible, or should I say naive?, . . . which sounds better.
(From the movie Forrest Gump).
My father was injured, and subsequently died as a result of his logging injuries when I was two and a half years old, so I turned my instinct for a father figure toward my older siblings. I believed everything they told me, and as a result, they used to use that for some "fun" (for them, not me). For instance, one evening I had to go to bed early while they would sit up and play card games. About ten pm, they came up with the bright idea of waking me, and telling me it was time to get ready for school. Sure enough, I got up, put on my school clothes, washed my face and hands, combed my hair, sat down at the table, then innocently asked, "Where's my breakfast?" Then back to bed, hiding my tears and shame, with their laughter ringing in my ears.
Also, during those early days, listening to the grownups talking about the war, not really comprehending, I tried to make sense out of what was going on. They would talk about Pearl Harbor. My Aunt Bertha was married to Earl Harbour, and I supposed "Pearl" was a close relative. Big Brother Bradley used my naivette to his advantage on occastion.
But my biggest feat of such tendency was in the fall of 1945.THE DAY VIOLA SCHOOL WAS BOMBED
The fall of 1945 was my first day of school. We walked 1.75 miles to catch the bus, then a 5 mile ride to school. This made me so tired that I would go to sleep in class, and sleep through recess, until after a few weeks I toughened up and started to learn.
One day in late August, I was out on the playground with some other classmates. I recall we were on the southeast side of the campus playing, when I heard something in the sky. Looking up I saw an airplane, coming from the east and flying directly toward the school. As I watched, OBJECTS BEGAN FALLING FROM THE PLANE, WHIRLING DOWN TOWARD US!
I thought, "IT'S THE JAPS, AND WE ARE BEING BOMBED!!!"
Terrified, I ran as fast as my short legs would go, back toward my classroom.
My teacher said, "Cranford, where are you going?"
I gasped, "THE AIRPLANE . . . THE JAPS ARE BOMBING US!"
She said, "Honey, that's just one of our planes, and those are papers they are dropping."
Sure enough, it turned out to be a Piper Cub, flown by a man named Devoe Hanks, advertising that he was coming to Viola to put on an air show, and take people for rides the following weekend.
And the Japanese surrendered the the first week of September, 1945.[Uncle Cran's Epilogue of Pitiful Lamentation]However, that is not the end of my being easily deceived. For instance, I write my true, honest, and compelling stories, with the hope that favorite nephew Jeffery will relate them, with a sympathetic mind, and kind words on his blog, never criticizing nor will he critique my comments, pointing out any fallacies,or mis-spelled words. Nor will he hold his simple minded uncle up to ridicule.
At least, such is my hope.