Rode Hard Put Up Wet

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Odessa, Texas

                                                  A Place to Call Home

If you have never been to Odessa, well, let me enlighten you.  When you get close to Odessa/Midland the air is pungent with the smell of sour gas from all the pump jacks scattered around the area.  You can’t miss them seriously.

Oh and if you can  find a hill to get on, you can see for miles and miles. Odessa is one of those towns that is rich one day and broke the next.  Oil drilling will be all over the place and then nothing is moving.  BUT it always comes back.

When I got there, the trailer and my family were all set up.  I met the girl next door who looked surprisingly a lot like me.  We were in the same classes we found out at school.

This  was a real adventure for me, since I had now realized that we were here to stay, at least in my mind it was a place for me to make friends and keep them.  Here I was walking some 10 blocks to Crocket Junior High for my first day of school.  I was excited and scared all at the same time.

I even got to enroll in Drivers Education at 14 years old.  Wow, that was a treat, not everyone got to take it.  This meant that I could, at first, drive a car with a licensed driver riding with me.

It wasn’t long before daddy bought 2 acres outside Odessa and we moved the trailer out there.  Although we only owned 2 acres there was a total of 5 acres that we used for playing and riding bikes and go-carts on.  This place was really run down.  It had 20 stalls for horses that were falling down and a cinder block house with no windows or doors.

Of course, it wasn’t long before we were getting all of it in tip top shape and daddy had built-on a bedroom and front room attached to the trailer.  Guess what, I got the bedroom. Wonders never cease, I had a closet with 3 skirts, 2 pants and some blouses.  I was in hog heaven.  No brothers beside me or under me, it couldn’t get any better.

After I turned 15, daddy gave me that green 1950 -4door Studebaker.  Not many kids my age had a car.  I remember wrecking it not long after getting it.  Daddy had sent me to the store to buy some Pepsi for his drink.  I had the bottles (in those days you returned the bottles to get new ones) sitting on the hump in the floor when I hit a raised up place in the road where it turned from dirt to pavement.

Anyway the bottles, fell off the hump and I grabbed for them.  BAD IDEA!  I ended  up hitting a customized 1956 -2 door hardtop (no post) Chevy that was parked in front of a house.  The Chevy proceeded to go through their wooden fence and smashed into a tree in the front yard.

This was not an ordinary house or car, since the customized car was owed by the District Attorney’s son and of course the house is where he lived. 

Well, the police came and shortly after, here came daddy.  He was upset, but not to the extent you would have thought.  At  least we had liability on my car which paid for the damage that was caused, BUT, it didn’t do a thing about getting my car fixed.

One afternoon, I got off the bus and there sat a 1950 Studebaker, lime rusted green, in pitiful shape and right beside it was my wrecked Studebaker.  When daddy came home he told me that if I ever wanted to drive my car again; I would take off the wrecked parts of my car and replace them with the same good parts off the salvage car.  He had purchased the whole rusted car from the salvage yard and had it delivered and set beside mine.

So every afternoon and weekends, I would be fixing my car.  My oldest brother helped a lot even though he was only about 12 he was a lot of help.  My younger brother helped where he could. Daddy would come and make suggestions.  At any rate, I had a car to drive once more.  It looked like something out of a Hitchcock movie (scary), but it ran.

More on the move to the country next time. 

Stay well and remember Rodehardputupwet.com

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