Thursday, July 30, 2009

Ozark Hillbilly 'Concrete Pond'

A new Ozark Mountain hillbilly report comes to me from my lovely wife, who has provided another series of exciting action photos for me to post along with her basic text and my 'extrapolations':
"Today we went to the swimming pool and swam from 1 to 5. The weather was just right for swimming, quite cloudy but we still got sun burn."
Apparently, this confirms that the promised upstream swim succeeded, for although no actual documentary proof has been forwarded of that arduous achievement, today's photographs do show our two offspring cavorting in the Salem pool! Or was En-Uk rescuing his older sister?

Uh-oh, the rescue fails miserably . . . yet, they make sport about the failure!

Scandalous! En-Uk in the 'deep' water, yet both parties laugh! Nevertheless, the offspring survive and opt for more dangerous pursuits in the pool's deeper end.

This took great courage, for as Sun-Ae noted, "[t]here were not many people" around to offer assistance in case of emergency way out in the ginormous pool, even though the admission price was low, for "it cost only $1.50 for each." Nevertheless, "the water was clean, the safety guards were nice, and" since "the diving board was the best," the kids went for the gusto. Sun-Ae explains:
"As you can see from the pictures, Sa-Rah and En-Uk had a lot of fun. One can go diving only if one can swim cross the pool where the division line was because the part where one can dive is 9 feet deep. I thought that En-Uk cannot swim, but because he wanted to dive, he passed the test of swimming cross the pool. I was very surprised and impressed. He had no fear of diving."
I vividly recall that same 9 feet of water. I used to risk my life at the bottom by picking up the grates that guarded the sucking drains and using those grates as weights to hold me down so that I could walk on the pool's floor. My kids had better not do that -- unless they want to feel my wrath! Anyway, far above that octopus's garden, En-Uk takes the first step and with deliberation approaches for the dive.

Cognizant of his contingent finitude, En-Uk pauses to call on a higher power as a local, tatooed pirate looks on indulgently.

The prayer is successful, for En-Uk bravely and successfully 'dives' into the abyss.

Sun-Ae then informs us that En-Uk subsequently displays his typically 'En-Uk-ian' mode of operations:
"As soon as he started, he continued diving without getting exhausted as you know about his usual obsession. That was fun. They 'forced' me also to dive, so I did, and it was fun. There were two young safety guards, who were very nice to teach some things for kids. En-Uk was again the 'talkative' person and had good conversation with them."
If I know En-Uk, he wearied them with incessant queries and prideful boasts. But he accomplished even more, for he "even encouraged [an unusually] reluctant Sa-Rah to dive, too." Reluctant? Sa-Rah is typically more courageous than En-Uk! Howsoever, let us observe Sa-rah's 'dives', as she learns from En-Uk.

Sa-Rah even goes on to perfect En-Uk's bodacious dive!

She manages to 'dive' yet again, with even greater perfection.

But the pool is filling up, getting crowded with other hillbillies, and is therefore growing dangerous to 'dive' into . . . but wait, En-Uk risks another dive.

The astonished judges award him a 9.6 for this unexpected, transformative plunge! Afterwards, En-Uk appears for his medal clothed in a garment designed for inclement weather.

I believe that he's dressed here for an imminent ice age . . . contrary to the advice offered by most other contemporary prophecies. Sa-Rah follows 'suit' . . . so to speak.

Hence, both kids, clothed for global cooling, returned "home, . . . hungry and tired" and, according to Sun-Ae, "ate left-over lasagna from yesterday, sausages, and ramyeon, and pudding as desert."

At the homestead, they were greeted by other relatives. Actually, some kinfolk visited earlier. "This morning, [your brother Tim's son] Justin came to visit," but later "in the afternoon, [brother John's son,] Joshua[,] came." Sun-Ae added that it seems that "Justin . . . reads your blog every day. He likes writing songs and is working on a book now, something about [the] church in ancient time[s] and now, a big theme, I assume. He said that his band is now dissolved." That is a big theme! He must be doing a lot of reading. I wonder what sort of songs he's writing, despite his band being dissolved. And just as that band was growing popular . . .

Uh-oh, there's news of Uncle Cran:
"I talked to Aunt Gay, Uncle Cranford's wife, and they will come on Friday to pick us up. Maybe we'll stay there overnight and do another [bout of] fishing, or the wi-game."
The what game? Or the why game? Uncle Cran, I know that you're reading this, so what sort of 'game' do you have scheduled? Or why?

Finally, Sun-Ae signs off with these ambiguous words:
"I'm enjoying your blog about our trip, how you can fabricate an interesting story out of those pictures."
Fabricate? Fabricate? What fabrication?! Do ye think I'd be telling it if t'warn't the truth?!

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At 1:58 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Linda Gay & I will pick up Sun-Ae, Sa-Rah and En-Uk on friday morning.
We are thinking of taking them to the fish pond in the afternoon after it cools down. We plan on some WII games until then. Gay may even sacrifice a package of blackberries for them.
Jeffery, you remember the WII games we played when you were here?
We are going to see if they want to stay until sunday afternoon. I don't know if they would want to take a drive saturday to Mansfield, MO to see the country, and maybe visit the Laura Ingalls Wilder home, but I'll see.
Linda Gay is still having some problems with the polymyalgia rheumatica. She goes in for another lab work on august 4th.
She stays tired all the time, and has pains in different areas of her body.


At 6:57 AM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

Uncle Cran, thanks for helping handle my kids in my absence, especially even with Aunt Gay's rheumatism. I hope that my family don't overtax her energy.

Sounds like you've got some fun things planned. I'm not sure if Sun-Ae or the kids know of Wilder, though, so you can check with Sun-Ae on that.

I do recall the games played on the television. Were those the WII games? I can't recall what "WII" means.

Looks like Cousin Bill will have to give up hope for those blackberries. I know that I'd like some of that cobbler. I hope that the kids have an innate taste for it. We'll see just how hillbilly they are.

Jeffery Hodges

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At 9:59 AM, Blogger Bill said...

Uncle Cran, Cousin Jeff:
Those kids won't like blackberries, what with all the seeds and runny juice.
And Cran, I'll UPS a couple of dollars your way-buy 'em a Mrs. Smith apple pie and some ice cream.
Hey, Sa-Rah and En-Uk, those berries had little bugs on them-bet they're still there.
Gotta be cautious, kids.
Cousin Bill

At 10:38 AM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

Unfortunately for you, Bill, my kids don't read this blog. You're out of luck, way out.

Jeffery Hodges

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At 11:58 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If it turns out they do have an "innate taste" for things hillbilly - I've got some poke salet that's been sittting in my freezer since my neighbor brought it.

It should still be "good."


At 12:26 PM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

Thanks, JK, but none of us know who you are or where you live . . . though you do seem familiar with Salem, so just take that poke salat right over to John's place.

Jeffery Hodges

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At 2:03 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If I send it UPS, will there be someone there to sign for it?

I've got "cold boxes" (courtesy of the VA) to ensure it'll stay cold for the fairly short ride.


At 2:19 PM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

Fairly short, but cold box needed?

I think that puts you within a certain range of Salem. I'd guess within 10 miles.

Sure, send the poke salat on. Just have my name mentioned at the door, and all will go smoothly.

Jeffery Hodges

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At 2:41 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, like I said, it's frozen. (And there's one other thing, since I started getting cold box deliveries on a monthly basis about 20 months ago, I've had to devote an entire closet to "dedicated storage space.")

And, since the dadburned things aren't biodegradeable, I can't simply trash 'em.

Incidentally, when I receive them, the boxes have made a trip from central Tennessee to "someplace" in Middle Arkansas so nope, guessing my whereabouts can't be based on hillbilly algebra.


At 2:55 PM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

But you did say that the trip was "fairly short"?

Jeffery Hodges

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At 12:26 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Though you're working in Seoul, it must give you great pleasure to see your family enjoying the same simple country pleasures that you did as a child.

At 2:08 AM, Blogger t_song said...

That looks like the awesome summer vacation to the grandparents that I never had.

At 5:19 AM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

Yes, Sonagi, it does . . . with the advantage that I get to avoid the summer's ticks and chiggers.

Jeffery Hodges

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At 5:22 AM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

T-Song, I also never had that sort of vacation, so I can imagine how you feel.

On the other hand . . . I did get raised by my grandparents and live the life that my kids are merely getting a taste of.

Jeffery Hodges

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