Places Called Home: Guthrie, Kentucky

Our third run in Turlock lasted just long enough for me to graduate from high school but it was time to move on. This time we really went on a long-distance move, Guthrie, Kentucky.

This move only lasted two months. This time we were looking for oil and although we actually had some crude come up, the amount was not enough to make a go of it. We really weren’t there long enough to get to know the place well.

I saw my first live Cardinal – the bird, not the baseball or football player – and got introduced to the vile species of bird aptly named – Bob White. Because the call it makes sounds like it is saying “Bob White”. And those feathered menaces sing it over, and over, and over, and over…

They also have cockroaches from hell. My dad sat a sandwich down on the counter and we he turned back to pick it up, it was moving. I went to kill one by hitting it with a baseball bat. I thought it was going to take the bat away from me and hit me with it. Took six whacks to take that critter out.

Guthrie was a dying town when we arrived. If you needed anything, you drove over the state line into Clarksville, Tennessee. The three things that immediately come to mind when I think back to that late summer of 1981 are that I couldn’t find any station on the radio that didn’t play country music only and my first introduction to Big Red and Mello Yello. Both are sodas – or so they claim – and I tried each once and once only.

Forty years later I still can’t get the taste of either out of my mouth.

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