Many of you have asked about a picture we have up on the wall behind the check out area of a matronly woman. That’s my grandmother Irene Woodard, I called her Grandma Woody. For those of you interested in the Grandma Woody story, I will tack it on the end of this email as it’s a bit lengthy. For now, here’s what this week looks like on the farm. Our hours on Wednesday have changed! Since we get the harvest in around 1p on Wednesdays and we have had some folks wish we were open a bit later to line up better with their drive home from work, OUR NEW WEDNESDAY HOURS ARE 2-8. And yes, we have peaches!! Due to the recent hot weather the peaches have really come on!
In the market this week:
Blueberries (limited) Almost done for the year
New Red Potatoes
Green Bell Peppers(limited)
Flowers-Market Bouquets-Friday thru Sunday
Romaine and Summer Crisp Head Lettuce
Eggs (chicken and duck)
And don’t forget we will deliver Thursday evenings.
Ok, Grandma Woody…Grandma Woody was my Mother’s mom. She grew up on a farm, as most all our relatives from that era of the 1920’s and 30’s did. She often told me the story of riding her horse to the one room school house she attended. When she arrived at school she dismounted, slapped the horse on the hiney and the horse would walk back to the farm. Around the end of school time her mother would slap the horse on the rear end again and the horse headed back to school for pick up. Kind of a pre-war Uber. After Grandma Woody worked in a small factory for awhile she decided to start her own business and enclosed the front porch on her house and turned it into a neighborhood store (sound familiar). She had everything in that little store. Housewares, canned goods, meats, dairy products, soft drinks, candy, plus she got up every morning at 4am to make homemade donuts she sold there. As a little boy I loved helping her in the store and occasionally got a fresh warm donut. Grandma had a cabinet in her microscopic kitchen that held a small paper bag of powdered sugar. My warm donut was placed in the bag, I shook the bag furiously to get complete coverage and when the shaking was done I pulled out a little piece of heaven!
Grandpa Woody worked for the milk plant in town and drove the tanker truck from dairy farm to dairy farm picking up milk early each morning. Grandpa Woody always called me Bill, never ever Steve. On Grandma Woody’s death bed I finally asked her the question that would clear the air for ever, “Grandma, why did Grandpa always call me Bill?” Her long anticipated reply,”I don’t know.”
My Grandmother’s store was located within walking distance of the town dump. This was long before there were any “sanitary landfills”. The open air garbage trucks picked up the garbage, hauled it to the mountain of burning trash and dumped it. Some of the poorest of poor folks actually lived in shacks on the dump. I recall Grandma Woody extending credit for food for those people who had nothing. I remember some paying their bill at the end of the month, but I’m sure some just couldn’t and I’m sure Grandma Woody was ok with that.
During the business day Grandma’s routine went something like this:
1..Wait on a customer
2..Walk back into her living room and sit down
3..Watch her afternoon “stories” The Secret Storm, The Guiding Light etc. on TV
4..Here the bell on the store door
5..Wait on a customer
A couple of years ago my father was sitting in our market as I waited on customers. He said,”You’re just like Grandma Woody!” At that point we thought it would be a good idea to have Grandma Woody keep a watchful eye over things and hang her picture up and make her the patron saint of MY little neighborhood store.
So here’s to you Grandma Woody from the kid who remembers marking the cans of Chef Boyardee spaghetti .29 cents with a grease pencil and rewarded with a creamsicle and a fireball.