We have been getting ready for a farm sale for close to a year. The work, worry, and trips to Kansas have ratcheted up as the months went by. Each trip was reliving years of experiences and saying goodbye to a life as it used to be. The house has stood without residents for two years while the in-laws accepted assisted living. They finally said they could not go back. I will spare you the stories of no water to clean with, rodents invading the house, rotting wood on the deck dropping me like a hangman’s trap door, the snakes slithering about, the tornado watch as the final cleaning was done, and the disappearing asparagus patch!
Regular readers know how hard any estate sale or home auction is for me. It is sad to me to see buyers at any sale consider and then disregard a lifetime in the dishes that once served family meals at a mother’s hand, a tool used endlessly in a father’s fist, tablecloths painstakingly crocheted by a grandmother’s enlarged knuckles, or a cheap piece of colored glass that sat forever directing the morning sun’s rays on the living room wall. At the farm sale it was hard to see a woman walk away with piece of pottery or a basket that belonged to my mother-in-law. I had to fight the urge to say, “Hey you, where are you going with that!” But the children had taken all they could take; it had to be sold.
Once the sorting and boxing and cleaning were done, the auction itself was easier. There was a melancholy underneath the day sure, but there was laughter as well as tears. The leaning port a potty? Or maybe some ugly item that no family member appreciated but sold for a surprising price. Neighbors appeared just to show support; men who had farmed the land with my father-in-law or who might have borrowed a rake or cultivator some hot summer day. Women who knew of my mother-in-law’s paintings, wanting one more, realizing there would be no more Dorothy art for their own farmhouse walls.
We got up Friday to a serious tornado watch and the promise of heavy rains for Saturday mornings. But by the end of that day, there had been no hail or rain and the forecast had changed for the next day. As we sat out under the trees after the last of the work was done the night before the auction, a breeze picked up. I have always thought God was in the wind, and I felt that He was whispering to us that the blessings would continue. They did as NO rain on Saturday, no burning sun, no cold, no wind. A slight cloud cover kept the temps perfect for a crowd to stand about at an auction.