Thursday, December 12, 2013

Trouble in Paradise

Did I tell you about the time Mack joined the Marines? Mack was plum sick and tired of that passel of kids runnin' around the house, and his Ma just never seemed to have enough of 'em, good Lord. There warn't nothin' to do around here fer him to earn his way, and he warn't gonna be no farmer. Enough generations of farmin' in the fambly past. Not for him, nosiree. So Mack went all the way up to Pueblo to enroll in the military. Got in, too, and they sent him off to somewheres back east for basic. Parris Island, I think it was. And then, you know what the Marines always say, “From the halls of Montezuma to the shores of Tripoli.” Well, shore 'nuf 'bout this time there's trouble a brewin' in Nickerocka, or sommers like that. So off they ship Mack, to fight his country's battles, on the land or on the sea.

Well, they all get down there, Mack's unit, I mean. They sittin' around down there on they hindsides three, four months, daydreamin' and wooshin' they was some action. So anyways, or at least so he tol' it, one Sattidy Mack sittin' around thinkin' about Nancy Woodson, you recollect Nancy; she was from over to Walsh, she was. Her Dad was Ned Woodson, big man, own most of Baca County and serve in the legislature up to Denver several years. So Mack mought dream, if he like, but Nancy later married Jason Sloan. You recollect the Sloans, but that's fodder fer a different mill.

So ol' Mack got so itchy he get a pass and go into Manakwa, or whatever that big town down in that godforsaken place is called. Found a cute little trick, too, so to speak. Seems she give him a good time and a whole lot more than he bargained for, 'cause when he got home a bit later, he bring company with him.

 Mack's older brother, Wayne, you know Wayne, he was purty wise to the ways a the world. Married now and settled down, had a good job, two kids already an' 'nother on the way. Wayne married Marcella Sims from over to Wichita, and Wayne had met her over there one time when the company send him down there to fix a problem the locals couldn't seem to handle. Anyways, there's another tale for another time. Wayne, all confidential-like, and the lovin' brother that he was, tole Mack about the ol' match-'n-icepick cure for what ailed him. Mack was not amused, ya mought say. So anyhow, he went on over to Doc Barrett, all red-faced and stammerin.' Doc give him some stinky salve and some harsh directions. Upbraided him too, and foreswore him to walk the straight and narrow henceforth and forevermore. Hit took care of him right good.

So then after a good while, Mack married Nadine Winters, though she never held no truck with Mack's people. Couldn't abide thet fambly, and how she ever fell in with Mack, I got no idee. So I guess she wheedled and cajoled Mack to get out of the Plains until they up and moved plum out to San Francisco. Fambly later heard Mack had a good job in the shipyards, but they never heard it from Mack or Nadie.

© 2013 David W. Lacy


Sharkbytes said...

Poor Mack! I suppose he's lucky that's all he brought home. Your stories make me want to put a character in my books to is from that area/era

vanilla said...

Sharkey, character development is a skill I have not mastered, hence the reader must extrapolate from whatever clues might exist in the tale.