I have been listening to family about roots, and remembering old memories. You could call me effortlessly an ‘Alabama child,’ growing up in the region of ‘Appalacha.’
I don’t deny it. I explored those caves, those forests, saw figures in the raw rock-faces, and giggled down ravines there. 2/3 of my childhood was there. I met moonshiners, met hunters, met wanderers, met smokers, met ‘other’ farmers (the magically delicious farmers) and I danced to their banjos, their harmonicas, and their singing. Yep, I’m a mountain child.
I can’t live far from the mountains. I ate sweet-potato pie as much as anyone else who earned $3,000 a year did in that region. It’s a clannish area, and my family is steeped in that region of Hackleburg. There is land that I could inherit, if I asked (Still working on the Hubs to move there….).
I love Alabama. It’s hot, it’s cold, it’s Appalacha. There are bears, foxes, coyotes, and rampant humans in the woods. It’s wild, but content. How often can you say that about a region?
My beloved Grandfather and Grandmother still live there. If I had the funds, I’d visit so often they’d never know lonliness. Not once. I have so many fond memories it brings tears to my eyes of all the things I’ve learned from them in the region. My Grandpa telling me stories of the land, my Grandmother cooking regional foods of the season – those memories I can’t forget.
Alabama has always led me to the mountains anew. They aren’t as snow-capped at the Rockies – but part of my soul lies there in the Appalachians. Always will. There is history I was part of, and if I return will be again – that silent call that doesn’t need words…
Dammit… Why do I have to live so far away?