I had my first Saturday morning out and about in town in as long as I can remember this weekend. It may have been the first one this year. I was excited for it because I haven’t been clothes shopping for little sister in an actual store since she was born. It was a disappointment that no one in town had any pajamas that would fit her. That seems like a strange thing to have a shortage of, but I guess these are strange times.

I was, as you might expect, annoyed to see a number of people out without masks. I had two bouts of what some might refer to as road rage because of discourteous drivers. If you have ever seen the movie “Fried Green Tomatoes”, you know what I’m talking about when I tell you that those people just like to have seen my Tawanda come out. 

Aside from that I felt so anxious about being away from my kids that I was home before noon and only mildly enjoyed the morning.

Sunday was a wonderful day. The entire family spent the day outside cleaning up the yard and the remnants of my zinnia gardens and other little projects I started but never finished over the summer.

In the process Michael dug up some little eggs. “Snake eggs!” I said and carelessly slammed one down on the concrete. I don’t know what possessed me to act so rashly. But what we peeled out was not a snake, but the littlest turtle you’ve ever seen. That particular turtle did not make it, but we found two other eggs. One of the shells was cracked and Michael peeled the turtle out and it was still alive as of bedtime last night and another egg has begun to hatch.

On Monday we decided to go to Crow Mountain and get some apples. The boy hoped to see an orchard tractor, but there wasn’t one in sight. He picked out a bag of number two Jona gold apples and we went on our way. (We later enjoyed several of them both cooked in sugar and raw with caramel).

I didn’t want to go home, so we drove down the back side of Skyline and went through Winchester, Tennessee, and somehow ended up on that godforsaken I-24.  The last time I was on that road on a holiday weekend I nearly suffered ten heart attacks the traffic was so bad, and this time, another holiday, we were on the stretch called Monteagle Mountain.

Mama has told me horror stories of that stretch for my entire life, so gory I won’t even repeat it here. And it was no comfort to me to see all those runaway truck ramps. I’ve never seen a runaway truck and don’t want to. At the bottom of the mountain everything came to a sudden halt. I was sure we were goners, but somehow we survived I-24 once again. It did claim several of the few good nerves I had left.

I haven’t been in Kimball Goodwill since last year, so I begged Michael to just let me peek in there since we were driving by anyway and he could sit out in the parking lot and give the baby a bottle. He did and I was so excited at what treasures might lay waiting for me after all this time. To my disappointment there were none.

So we headed towards Scottsboro, and I’ve never been happier to be back home.

The life I had before the coronavirus came around is nowhere to be found. I feel safer at the house anyway, so I guess I’ll just go back to waiting it out.

Danielle Wallingsford Kirkland is a former Sentinel staff writer and correspondent. She can be reached at danielle.w.kirkland@gmail.com.

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