Gone with the wind
by Whitley Clifton | October 9, 2019 2:19 pm
Recently, I went back to the old homeplace. My, how things have changed! There are no longer roads that have not been paved, and those little wooden bridges are a thing of the past, having been replaced by sturdy cement ones.
The natural landscape has been changed for the better, according to the idea of progress for future generations, but oh, how I miss those long, winding county roads with canopies of cool, greed shade jutting out into the road overhead. They are long gone, as well as the birds that sang so freely, who were driven deeper into the forest because of lack of habitat.
Old, grande country plantations have fallen into total disrepair. The stately homes seem so lonely and forsaken after their inhabitants left. The cotton, corn, and peanut fields are silent now because those crops are seldom cultivated. Those big tracks of land have been planted in long-leaf pine trees to be used for future generations.
There was a small country road across the main road from our house that nature has reclaimed. I remember the school bus came on that dirt road to pick us up for school. Now, you would never know a road had been there. After we moved from Garfield to Swainsboro, the bus changed its route, and the road was never used again.
At one time, people picked their cotton crops by hand and worked the corn, tobacco, and peanut fields by the sweat of their brow. That all changed when time-saving machinery pushed those workers out of the fields and took overproduction.
No longer do you see country boys walking barefoot with a stubby fishing pole slung over their sun-burned shoulders with their dog following closely behind, headed to the nearest creek or fishing hole. Now, more than likely, they are enjoying themselves like their city counterparts, sitting in an air-conditioned room, playing video games all day long.
In the name of progress, country women don’t bake their signature biscuits anymore. The traditional food that southern cooks are known for is slowly being replaced by their daughter’s craving for simplicity of fast food because it is quick and easy with little cleanup!
The sights, sounds, and beauty of growing up in the country were unforgettable, and you can’t convince us die-hard fans with sweet memories that it is all “gone with the wind.”