I have always looked up to my Grandfather (insert short joke here---we'll continue when you are done---elevator music playing-----OK, yes!!! That WAS funnay!!!).
Besides looking just like Andy Griffith, Grandpa has softly judicious eyes and a laugh that radiates love for miles. There is something about the way he talks to me that even today makes me feel 7 again. I am still wrapped up in a blanket at his house eating Grandma's lemon pie while gospel played on the radio. It was always summer at their house. There was an amazing feeling of freedom and adventure that hit you as soon as you would step foot on the property. The PB&J's tasted better there, the punishment for idiotic antics less severe and the day's activity card was always full.
My Grandparents always had flourishing gardens ripe for picking sweet produce and gentle flower aromas lingered in the air. Snapdragons assured ad lib puppet shows daily. The summer honeysuckle would drip off your lips making you close your eyes in pleasure and substituting meals while on the run.
But one visit was not so joyous.
Wanna hear about it?? Of course YOU DO!!!!! Here I go:
Grandpa had a rabbit farm. We didn't really know what they were used for and I tried not to think about it. It was just fun taking the babies out to play everyday. They all looked alike so there was really no "pet" opportunity. But I still loved them.
One day I walked around the corner of the barn to see my grandfather holding a young rabbit by the ears, fluffy legs heavy in a hopping motion trying to escape. In an Alfred Hitchcock-ish "side view" way, I saw my loving Grandfather take a hairbrush and murder this rabbit. When it went lifeless, so did I, dropping to my knees with a shocked thunk. Tears flowed down my cheeks making streaks in the dirt residue that builds on formerly clean summer faces early each day. I went speechless at the sight. When Grandpa turned to spot me I had began to run away, ignoring his calls.
I was destined straight to Grandma's arms and the understanding I could find there. I just hoped that she could live with the news that Grandpa was a ruthless rabbit murderer and we should leave immediately.
My Grandmother explained with the patience of a thousand angels why Grandfather had to take the Hare's life,, with a "Harebrush " (laughing at my own stupidity here,, join in--it's fun!!!)!!!! Turns out the rabbit had diarrhea and in order for the others not to catch it, he had to be humanely euthanized (although death by hairbrush sounds a bit humiliating!!).
In an "only could happen to me" turn of events, my little body was racked with diarrhea two days later. No one could know this. Somehow I had to leave immediately because Grandpa holding me up by the scruff of my neck and killing me with a hairbrush was NOT the way I wanted to go out. I suffered in silence and in fear for my life until I could sneak the call home to my parents. Surely they would come immediately to save me from this horrendous death sentence. My brother ratted me out. An hour later I stood toe-to-toe with my assassin, who laughed a full belly laugh and scooped me up in his arms before scooping us up some homemade peach Ice cream (no doubt to fatten me up for the kill).
I'm watching you Grandpa!!! Step away from the brush!!!!