Thursday, September 15, 2011
Looking at my little outhouse sitting in my yard for the past few days has reminded me of the outhouse at my Papaw and Mamaw's house when I was a child. Their outhouse was a pretty good walk from the house. There was a fence along the pathway that had spearmint growing in abundance. My great grandmother used to live with my grandmother in her older years and whenever she went to the outhouse, she always picked a few leaves of spearmint from the fence row and came back chewing it. Whenever she smelled of spearmint, you knew she had just came back from the outhouse. Papaw's outhouse had a little window in the side. It was discreetly placed pretty high up but it let in light. He made two seats, one higher for adults and one lower for the little ones. Mamaw usually had a roll of toilet paper in the outhouse but whenever money was tight we would sometimes run out. She kept her old "Sears and Roebuck" catalogs in the toilet for just that occasion. In those days, about half the pages in the catalog were colored pages and about half were printed in black and white. The black and white pages were thinner than the colored ones. The black and white ones were not as "slick" in texture as the colored ones and therefore were the choice to use as toilet paper. You would tear out a page and crumple it in your hands and then rub it back and forth making it smooth and soft. You know, it really wasn't bad. We hated it when all that was left was the colored pages. I know a lot of people kept a bucket of corn cobs in the outhouse but I never personally experienced that pleasure. I can't imagine that the experience would have been all that pleasant. For some reason, wasps always seemed to build a nest in the outhouse. Now that was a scary experience. Papaw would spray for wasps, but it seemed that you could always hear a wasp buzzing at a very inappropriate time. What about you - do you have a special outhouse story?