The Henry J

Jim was getting used to his new surroundings at the Mooney Farm and was out for a stroll. As he headed down to the county road, he walked past the dilapidated chicken coop and Automobile Death Row, and wound up at the steel barn. He thought about taking a peek inside, but there were no aisles or visible pathways, and everything inside was stacked up precariously like homemade New Delhi scaffolding.

Not wanting to fill out an OSHA report on himself, he continued on around the barn to an area with what looked like a hastily erected log framed cover. Approximately fifteen feet deep and seventy-five feet long with a rusted metal roof, it had been in the process of falling over since the day it was slapped together. Jim figured there might be something cool stored under its roof.

He was just starting to rummage a little when George pulled up on his tractor and dismounted with a “Well, hey there! Getting acquainted with the place?”

“I thought I would take a look around. Who cobbled this thing together, a drunken fisherman in the dead of winter or Dr. Seuss on crack?”

“Welp, Dad built that when he bought the place from Humbird Lumber back in the 1950s. We used to store what farm and logging equipment we had back then underneath.”

“You all aren’t much for throwing things out, are you? A lot of this stuff looks like it’s from the 30s. You been here since the 50s then?”

“Yep. Dad moved us here from the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, do you know where that is? Good. Anyhow, we moved here for the prosperity, or so Dad said, but Idaho was about as remote and poor as where we came from. In fact, when we first moved here, before they bought the place, my parents set us up in a camp by Poverty Peninsula on the south shore of the big lake. We thought that was kind of funny, moving from one peninsula to another. Do you know where that is? No? Well, it’s not on any maps anymore, at least I don’t think it is. Do you know where Safeway is?”

Copyright © 2019 J.J. West. Fiddlesticks! Tales From A Country Ghetto.
All Rights Reserved.