The day starts calmly enough. I am met early in the morning by a list lying on my kitchen counter written hastily by BB, whose handwriting would drive my second grade teacher berserk, bless his heart.
It reads…”will call on numbers to feed but probably 12. Parts need picked up in Dodge and also meat at the processing place. Can’t find my phone. See what you can do. And my email isn’t working again…”
With that, my trembling hands make coffee and lots of it.
I start putting out sacks for lunch…used but empty grocery sacks. I hang one on each of my cabinets pulls. Totals a perfect 12. I went to college for this!
On the third sack, phone rings as BB races through the kitchen. I talk to a lost truck driver who is…lost. Again. BB says to just meet him at Road 23984 and he’ll guide him in.
BB is hungry. I say I’ll fix him some eggs. NOPE…no time. “Gotta run!”, as he grabs anything edible and on the counter while I pray that the carton of yogurt he just nabbed is still good.
Phone rings. Cowboys want to know if anyone has brought down the ice chests from the silos. Nope. OK.
Back to sacks…where was I? Get all the way up to #8 hung on the pulls when Son #3 calls. Can I take his phone to be fixed? Uh after lunch?? That’ll work. Oh and is there pop in the fridge?
Back to sacks. Now all 12 are up. Phone rings.
Son #2 wants me to know he’s packing his lunch so don’t count him.
Down to 11. Take one sack down.
Start sacking up chips…we buy huge sacks of various chips then bag them up in El Cheapo sandwich bags.
Finish with 16 sacks of chips. Start sacking the sacks in the 11 sacks assembly line style.
BB is back. Still hasn’t found phone. And I have forgotten to look for it. Wait, I say. I’ll dial your number. Neither of us hear a cotton picking thing. My detective skills tell us that it must either be in his truck, in the garage or…once again…be lying in the manure pile. I try not roll my eyes but…he leaves.
Back to sacks…get the 4th one filled with chip sack as phone rings…cowboys want me to know that the coolers are on the front porch. Check. They like to keep me happy. They know where their lunch comes from.
Cell phone rings as I hang up house phone…can you come to the feedlot and pick up so and so and take them to the south Allen field?
Note: for 30 some odd years I have begged for a map of all the “places”. I cannot keep up with the old and new places much less which is north and which is east. Sigh. Sure. Maybe whoever it is I’m picking up will know exactly where we’re going cause I sure as heck do NOT!
Get so and so delivered and as I go through the pasture, #2 meets me in his truck and flags me down. He needs a tire taken into town to be fixed.
Get tire delivered and while I’m there find out that there’s a new baby in town, the football team is doing great this year and Mrs. Smith is in the nursing home/resort now. I also get some windshield cleaner refill and order a new windshield wiper for my truck. And some gunk to hopefully stop the leaks in my utility wagon tires. I also ask for a sack please. I’m running out dontcha know?
Arrive back home to Sack #?…lost my place. Find the last sack with chip sack and I’m off and running.
I manage to get all 12…no 11 sacks filled. But wait…BB calls to say there will be 8..so and so is sick, so and so has a Dr.’s appointment and so and so won’t drive until after lunch.
OK. so that’s 8 now…take 3 sacks down. Start sacking up cookies that I thankfully had the foresight to make the night before.
Get last sack filled as phone rings. Cowboy #2 says that they’re working cattle today and will have an extra cowboy. Back up to 9.
Get sack out and fill it with chips and cookies.
Phone rings…are lunches ready? Counting. To. Ten. “No” I chirp sweetly…”it’s just 10:30.” Oh, he says. “I thought it was 11:00.” I’m thinking “Lunch is served at 12 goof.” But I stifle any replies other than, “You’ll have to hang on for a while. I’ll call you when they’re ready.”
And I’m pretty sure that at the rate I’m going, lunch won’t be served until around 2.
And then I go back to the sacks. Chips. Check. Cookies. Check. I think. Better go through them and count again.
OK. Done. Now we’ll do the veggies. Carrots all sacked and now in sacks. Wait. How many do I have now? Am I down to 8 or 9? I’ll just go with what I have and if there’s an extra one, I throw it in the fridge to use tomorrow.
Sandwiches get made assembly line style also…9 slices of bread lined up, then each slapped with mayo, then down goes 9 pieces of lettuce so the mayo holds it in place. Then 9 slices of meat, followed by 9 slices of cheese and topped with 9 slices of bread that has some mayo to hold the cheese in place. This is a calculated work of science!
I manage to get the sandwiches sacked up and sacked into the grocery sacks…when the phone rings.
BB says we’re up to 11 again as he found a couple more guys to drive.
Get 2 more sacks out. Chips. Cookies. Sandwiches. Drat…forgot to ice down the coolers. Run to garage, throw ice into coolers, then “place” not “throw” pop into coolers. Top them all off with more ice…Diet Pop Cooler, Regular Pop Cooler, Sandwich Cooler with just a little ice…again, science at its best.
Haul it back into the kitchen to make final 9…no 11 sandwiches. Get halfway through that when phone rings. The number is now 12. Really.
With lightening-quick reflexes, I grab #12 sack that was on the floor, fill it with whatever is left over. Cowboys are waiting at the door for lunches. Time is not my friend. They’re hungry. They are on a tight schedule. *snort* But…they are patient. Thank goodness. Because there is NO way I can lift those now full and HEAVY coolers.
I must hurry. All 12. Or 9 sacks are filled as I carefully shove them into the iced down cooler. Or is it 11?
As the cowboys drive off into the sunset/high noon, I collapse onto the porch swing and pray, “Please Lord, let there be enough sacks.”
Never did I dream I would pray such a prayer.
Ten minutes later, the phone rings. “MOM!! How come I have nothing but chips and cookies in my sack?!!!!”
Because you’re my favorite. That’s why.