SUNNY CAL JOURNAL - Mud Holes, Mud Pies And Other Dirty Adventures

By Bob Weaver

My mom didn't like me dirty, but dirty I got.

There wasn't a lot to do in the Village of Hur but to play cowboys and indians in the woods, play in mud holes in front of our house, crawl into caves and under rocks, and slide down red clay banks into creeks.

Mud and dirt was much of country life.

If a family had a little financial means, you had old dirty clothes and your clean clothes, in which to change.

Most kids I played with didn't have that advantage, while I spent most of my youth cleaning up and putting on my clean clothes.

There were large mud holes in the ditch line in front of the house beside the mud road, ready-made mixtures of mud and water to take a dip, wallow and create mud things with sticks and rocks, Wal-Mart toys not needed.

The girls made mud pies to be placed in the hot sun for seasoning and hardening, and on more than one occasion I was convinced to partake in a dinner party to sample the crusty delights, unaware of e-coli and other near fatal outcomes.

Keeping in mind I was the same kid that was challenged by my cousins to take a hatchet to awaken the bees in a beehive, to then get stung about thirty times.

Perhaps my greatest dirt reward was when my dad, an employ of the State Road Commission, when he hauled a truckload of sand from the Little Kanawha River and dumped it in the yard.

This mountain of sand, enjoyed by the family cats to relieve themselves, gave hundreds of hours of play creating roads and landscapes for toy cars and trucks.

Ignoring today's health rules, playing in dirt and drinking creek water didn't kill me.

Being a kid in the 21st Century, I'm sure I would be more entertained with I-Pods or electronic hand-held devices that would be highly allergic to mud and water.

But not to forget, here in Calhoun, the younger folks go muddin' with their ATVs and pick-up trucks, adventures with beer and girls that they'll likely reminisce about when they get old.

Perhaps coming of age in the 1950s was the unbridled freedom to wander across the hills and hollers without supervision, ongoing activity that today would require a report to children's protective services.