Yesterday I saw a farmer pulling a cart on his tractor. A pretty normal scene where I live, until I noticed his daughter scrunched down in the back with her head between her knees.
It was then that a thousand feelings rushed over me.
You see, I spent most of my pre-teen and early teens in that very same position.
Looking back, I actually believe that my father got a certain thrill out embarrassing me. Such an easy task, though, at that age when you think the whole world is laughing at you.
He had a 1954 old Chevy truck that barely ran. He would start working on it early Saturday and by Sunday afternoon it was up and running. Through a black cloud of smoke one could see a proud father driving this loud stinking calamity through suburbia. It was at the exact time that all the good people did their normal suburban weekend activities like washing their cars and mowing their lawns. If you happened to look inside, you would have a seen a blond ball of shame on the floorboards in the very same position as the farmer's daughter.
I knew exactly how she felt in the back of that tractor. There were people watching, lots of people watching. Come on Dad!
Now that I am older, I feel a little guilty that I didn't pick my head up and enjoy the ride. I think of all the things I missed with my head down, worrying about what people thought.
If I could, I would have shouted to that young girl to pick her head up because she may regret it someday.
But some lessons, I guess folks need to learn on their own.
I am trying to learn this even at my age. Trying to hold my head up, so I don't miss a thing even through all the loud stinking calamity.
I love you.