I suspect few people actually consider the significance of the holiday we celebrated last Monday; I’m among the sorry group, although I did labor a bit, but mostly I meandered through the day with the subject of labor being quite removed from my mind.
Here in this area of the San Bernardinos, it is customary on Memorial Day weekend–and to a lesser extent on Labor Day weekend–for us inhabitants to engage in mountain-wide garage sales. Well, I invest in the customer side of the garage sales, for although we’re into our 13th year here in Crestline, the Buxton household has not once indulged in dragging our excess belongings to the driveway, arranging them on tables, and erecting a SALE sign. Nope, I gather up dollars, rev up our Jeep engine and tear down the streets following the poster board neon orange signs and the dream of finding a bargain or two, or perhaps even a treasure that calls to be ensconced somewhere in our domicile.
“I’ll be up around 8:30,” Rebecca had told me. While I waited for her to arrive, I baked a chocolate pie–her favorite–boiled potatoes in their skinny jackets, then chopped, and mustarded and mayonnaised until I had thrown together a great potato salad. Rebecca brought fresh corn and Jerry and Nathaniel whipped up to Stater’s for the ribs, which he labored over for several hours, utilizing a little smoker column Patrick had given him sometime back.
Rebecca is good for me; she’s of a slower, more deliberate nature–compliments of her Buxton genes–while I tend to tear around, flapping my wings and rushing about to get on to the next stop or the next project or the next event. We probably spent 30 minutes at the first sale site and had it not been for her I would have already been scouting out the next place. . . and would have missed the sweet, slow visit with the fine people who have a tiny shop featuring rocks, gems, and antiques on Alder Road in Crestline. They had popped up an outdoor tent featuring many items from their store, along with tables of clothes and miscellaneous items, including beautiful old bottles, some with rusted caps, and antique glass turned amethyst from the interaction of chemicals and sunlight.
We moved on, did Rebecca and I on Labor Day, and I bought a couple of things, as did she, then on our way back to the house, she wanted to stop and look at a lawnmower she had seen when we first started out, and it seemed like a good deal, but she wasn’t sure, so she told the man, “I’ll send down my son and my dad to check it out,” and Jerry and Nathaniel drove to the place and for $60.00 bought a fine Craftsman power lawn mower, loaded it into our Jeep, then transferred it to their car when it was time for them to leave.
Oh yes! the meal. Turned out great, except after we had arranged the table on the back deck and were setting out the meat, here came the meat-eating bees, and because we didn’t want to fight with them, we gathered up and sat ourselves down in the dining room where we tore into the ribs. Delicious, smoky, succulent. “I’ll bring you one,” Rebecca had called over the front deck railing to Nancy across the street, and because they hadn’t yet cooked the chicken they had planned and we had extra ribs and everything else, we packed up the food and shared with our neighbors.
I’ve been wanting a brown leather jacket, this one fits me perfectly, is adorable, and cost one dollar! The bargain of the day. It is missing the front button, but I will buy a beautiful button somewhere . . . that will not match the sleeve buttons . . . but will be beautiful anyway. When you see me wear it, don’t mention the mismatch! Well, since I have already revealed the slight fault, I guess you might as well go ahead and finger the front button on the buttery leather jacket and then lift the sleeves and note the mismatch. Promise to smile.