It was recently pointed out to me that the time I have been alive in the USA equals to about one third of the history of this country. This is computed by considering that from 1789 to 2018 totals …
It was recently pointed out to me that the time I have been alive in the USA equals to about one third of the history of this country. This is computed by considering that from 1789 to 2018 totals 229 years or from 1776 to 2018 totals 242 years. With my eightieth birthday nearing, that would mean that I have witnessed approximately a third of this country’s history. During this period there have been drastic changes in almost every aspect of life. As I contemplate these changes, I have concluded that documentation of them, as best as I can recall, will leave a record for those who follow me. I want to drain my memory bank and deposit it here in a public account.
Every individual must choose the path that he or she will follow throughout their lifetime. As I reflect back at the path that I have selected, admittedly it was not crowded. Different paths lead to different designations and through diverse terrain that creates assorted challenges, some leading to prosperity and happiness, others to poverty and heartbreak. I have been truly blessed while traveling the path that I have taken as it led me safely over Fool’s Hill and down into a pleasant valley where I enjoy the food, flowers, animals, and crystal clear water which I share with a loving family. In this valley, I have reserved a small plot at the cemetery at Tubbs Church of Christ, which is near my home and where my wife’s parents are buried, for my final resting place. There I will be surrounded by family and friends who have also completed life’s journey. I could ask for nothing better.
I could not expect my story to be typical of ones told by people who were reared in more harsh environments and who failed, by no fault of their own, to receive the parental supervision which would have led them down a more desirable path. That which is portrayed in this writing is seen through the lens of a country boy who received the necessary guidance as the chosen path was followed. I was blessed with parents who showered me and my six siblings with abundant love. With this love came discipline. Spankings (well deserved switching, not beatings) were doled out when needed, and with me they were effective. In today’s world, paddling, switching, and spanking are outlawed and rehabilitation has replaced punishment should a child fail to adhere to the standards set by a lawful society. Is this good or bad? There were those who used no constraint in their punishment and for this to be controlled is good. A child should never be subjected to a beating, but early childhood punishment, administered properly, is preferable to the need for extensive rehabilitation after avoidable mistakes are made due to the lack of needed structure and discipline. I am not a fan of old quotes, but here is one that I think to be appropriate. “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”
I was fortunate in that I was not subjected to many of the temptations which were available to others. Having no means of transportation, trips to the county line for intoxicants was not possible. While working at Tatum’s Department Store in Cordova during my junior and senior years in high school, coupled with the choirs required of me at home, there was no time left for me to get into trouble. Faithful church attendance, with a father being a minister of the Gospel, enabled me to receive the parental guidance needed to assist me on my journey up Fool’s Hill. Not all my peers were so fortunate, and some found the climb up the hill to be difficult. Perhaps a quart jar of iced tea, and an admonition to use extreme caution while making the climb such as I received from Hattie Cole, would have been advantageous to many.
As we fast forward eighty years, it seems that the world in which I was born has evaporated as does the early morning fog. It appears to be a much larger world now than the one which consisted of a lowly, unfinished house, situated at the end of a dirt (often mud) road where I grew up. This realization is the impetus of this writing as I look back to my first remembrances, and attempt to make a comparison to today’s world. Changes are inevitable, but some are affected more by them than are others. From humble beginnings, any move upward has a bearing on the quality of life an individual may experience. Using my passage through life as an example of the significance that change can make, I start my story of my climb up Fool’s Hill, my trip through Memory Lane and my adventures Across Time.
Wheeler Pounds is a local author who has written three books, "The Cherokee Hideaway," "The Cellar Vault: Secrets of the Cherokee Hideaway," and "The Spy Sanctuary: Secrets of the Cherokee Vault," with a fourth book "Up Fools Hill, Down Memory Lane, Across Time, in the works. The first three books are currently available online at Amazon.com. Pounds can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by mail at 3424 Kings Mill Rd., Oakman, AL 35579.