Friday, January 9, 2004

Ode to a Pot Belly

red cloud, potbelly [front]

 Oh the Memories.

When I awoke this morning to Mother Natures beautiful white blanket, I found my thoughts going back to "that snowfall" of many years gone by. I was living in the most western reaches of Kentucky, in a little town called Paducah. It was very hip to live in the country back then. And I really mean... the country.  I lived on a farm that was five miles out of town. Then you traveled down a gravel road. That road finally emptied into a cleared area where a small four room tenant farm house rested. 

The furnace did not work. It scared me anyway and I was glad when we had to stop purchasing home fuel and bought for  a mere $100 a pot belly heater called a Warm Morning. 

Now, I am a city girl. Both my parents are from New York City. My father is dangerous with a screwdriver and I am his daughter.  I would look at that Warm Morning and cuss.  Yet, I learned how to start a fire in it, I learned how to bank it, I learned how to shake it down in the morning, and after shaking it down, I got it going again.  Yup, this little old city girl could get that Warm Mourning fired up faster and faster as the days grew colder and colder. 

1977.  The worst blizzard I have ever seen.  It snowed 18 inches. Then stopped and the sun came out, began to melt everything.  Then, the sky darkened and it snowed another foot.  I would walk outside, fall through the top 12 inches, hit the ice on top of the first 18 inches, pause for a moment and then plunge up to my waist in the snow.  Very difficult trying to find wood to get the smoldering coal back to a blaze. 

I always wondered about the name, Warm Morning.  Was it a joke?  Some twisted mind from the 1800's called that humor?  Was it intended as an oxymoron? My experience was this....there was no Warm Morning that winter.   

7 comments:

sunflowerkat321 said...

LOL - we had a MODERN wood stove in a previous house and I never experiences a "warm morning". Maybe the name relates to how much you sweat to split wood and haul it into the house. I was living in Lafayette, IN in 1977...I think I remember that blizzard. Purdue shut down!
Kat

sonensmilinmon said...

Alpha, WHERE did you live? I was tickled when I saw that Sunflower lived in Lafayette in 77 when Purdue closed. I lived in W. Lafayette at the time myself!
What a winter ... I was in CA that spring! LOL
Monica

dymphna103 said...

I have one similar to that now. It is great when it is burning but usually in the morning it is cold john

barbpinion said...

PADUCAH, YEP! MY HUSBAND AND I PASSED THROUGH THERE IN THE WINTER MANY TIMES, DRIVING OUR SEMI, AND IT WAS BITTERLY COLD. YOU DESERVE AN A+ FOR THE EFFORT USED IN ORDER TO KEEP WARM. WARM MORNING, MY EYE...BUT AFTER ALL THESE YEARS I SEE YOU REMEMBERED THE NAME. HOW COULD YOU NOT? LIKE YOUR JOURNAL, AND WILL VISIT AGAIN. DON'T I ALWAYS? LOL Barbpinion

musenla said...

I suppose it was named thus to inspire visions of warm cozy days indoors even in the middle of subsero temp days. I'm impressed you learned how to build and sustain a fire in it. I would be clueless myself!

krobbie67 said...

In one of the houses we lived in when I was growing up, we only heated using woodstoves - good ol' Ben Franklins. There was NEVER a warm morning during the winter and there were many a smoky ones to boot. Inevitably someone would get up early to start the fire that went out overnight and would forget to open the damper and the house would fill with smoke. UG!! ---Robbie

wfhbear said...

I remember the '77 storms well. I got stuck at work in NYC for a week. Then '93 had a couple big ones too. Now I just look at the news to see what's going on in old NJ and NY. It's 70 today in Nevada. Just stopped by to say hello. Bill....."Comments on the events of my life".