|How many hands used these?|
Old tables have so much voice to me. The scratches and dents resulted from many meals, and there must have been laughter and stories told after the dishes were cleared, the coffee poured.
|Many meals were eaten here.|
On the farm we had three milk cows, which produced untold gallons of raw milk over my life there. Every morning Mom strained the milk into a metal crock, and set it carefully in the old Kelvinator refrigerator. By late afternoon, she showed me how to skim off the cream that had risen to the top of the milk as it cooled.
Mom carefully ladled the cream into an old Mason jar, where it would wait. Then she poured the milk into a chipped pitcher, just in time for another crock-full of warm milk, fresh from the evening’s milking. In the morning, we would again skim off the cream, and ladle it into the jar. We drank the milk, bits of cream still circling around the thick white liquid.
|This is exactly like mine!|
Today I held a smaller version of Mom’s old churn, with eyes closed and mind searching for the hands that turned the handle, spinning the paddles until cream went from liquid white to solid yellow. I know that somewhere in this churn’s life, a girl’s hands took over the churning while the mother worked on another chore. The worn faded red handle told me that the girl grew to a woman, who would someday want her own churn.
I paid for the churn, and carried this treasure out into the bright sun. The resulting migraine told me that it was time to get into the dark rooms of my house, so I made no detours to my other favorite places. At home, I wiped the churn off with one of Mom’s old faded dishtowels. I placed it in the hutch next to Mom’s butter mold, carved by my great-grandfather for his daughter.
In the dark of the dining room, I gazed at my ‘new’ churn with a great sigh of pleasure. Migraine or not, I felt good-- no, great.