Chapter Five: Yesterdays Will Fight Todays’ Battles
BY PAULA WATKINS
Historians who study past conflicts insist we must know when and how we fight our battles. I guess this includes sibling wars that occurred growing up with the Jordan Street Gang. Not a single day went by that one of more disagreements happened between brothers and sisters. Or sometimes we would defend our otherwise smart-aleck brother against three or four from across the street. Boy, I sure was glad to have experienced sibling fights of yore – especially yesterday.
I’ll begin with an experience that occurred while we were traveling. We needed to get gas – for the car – not fast foods! We pulled up to a very busy chain gas station and were lucky to be three cars back. The pumps were going full force, and folks were moving along to be considerate for those waiting. No so with our station. “What’s the hold up?” says he who is my better half. All of a sudden a modern day Paul Bunyan came out of the station carrying what looked like enough food for a church supper. Not only was he a BIG man, his two companions were sizable also. “Paul’s” height reached a full head above the SUV he was traveling in. Well they stood outside their vehicle comparing their purchases, laughing and having a good old time – at the expense of my blood pressure gradually continuing to rise. I began with my optimist attitude first and tried to convince myself that soon they would be moving. Nope! They just loaded up and sat there and sat there. I suddenly had a flashback to sibling wars and how to best handle this situation.
Our windshield was in an awful mess and the squeegee thingy was up there right beside Paul Bunyan’s window. So I said to my beloved, “I am going to march up there and get them to move. Maybe if they see that we have waited for the darkness of daylight savings time to occur, they will move.” I got out of the car as best as any woman my age can do, and hobbled up there, putting myself right beside what was probably a retired pro football player.
I picked that squeegee up and leaned it against the water bucket, giving those inconsiderate men a look that would have melted the SUV they were traveling in. I look back on yesterday and have decided I must have looked like I had my Roy Rogers pistol on my hip ready to draw. I was mad, not angry, and they did move but not before laughing at that old woman standing with her squeegee weapon.
You have to understand I was just supposed to be walking to get the window cleaner, but the flashback of sibling wars just kicked in. I could almost hear Larry saying, “Oh no! She’s lost it again!” One man a car over said, “Unbelievable!” I don’t know if he was describing my irrational act, or how some people just don’t have consideration for each other. I know, when I look back, that it was probably quiet comical seeing me standing there with my water-loaded weapon.
To understand the love of siblings, you have to first understand that it is the sister’s job to annoy her brothers no matter how old they are. Man I am so glad I did a good job with that responsibility. I love them dearly, but I sure do like to lovingly hear them get irritated with me. They can’t catch me because they can’t run very fast. Oh well, I can’t run either!
On another page, please use this week to thank each and every veteran you come in contact with. You do not understand; I do not understand – unless we were in their shoes and came home with the scars that will plague them for their remaining days. God Bless The USA!