My Papa has always been an incredible story-teller.
You could sit down with him and as long as he had a glass of sweet tea, he could tell stories for hours... stories of growing up on a farm, working in the canning plant and mining phosphate, funny stories about stealing watermelons and drunk goats, and stories of his adventures traveling around the world.
A few years ago I took a special trip up to Mulberry just to document Papa's stories. I recorded almost 30 hours of Papa's life, work, family and adventures and even got to sit down with Papa and his brother, Uncle Buster, who talked about his time serving during World War II. Their sense of humor made even the most ordinary events entertaining. The only thing I couldn't catch on the audio recording was the gleam in Papa's eye when he'd talk about falling in love and the chuckle under his breath when he'd relive the funniest incidents.
In the past few years, I've worked on and off transcribing Papa's biography. It always makes me smile to hear him tell my favorite stories and I think he is a perfect example of an "old country boy" from a time long ago. I've learned so much from his life, and from his stories. And now I want to share those stories with whoever will listen. Little by little, I'm transcribing his life onto paper and someday I'll have a whole book to pass them down to my family.