The Mountain Laurel
The Journal of Mountain Life

Visit us on FaceBookGenerations of Memories
from the
Heart of the Blue Ridge

Growing Up In The Country

By Rachel Poff © 1988

Issue: April, 1988

I got my education in a little one room schoolhouse called Providence. I had to walk about two miles through rain, snow and sun. We didn't have school busses and we didn't have snow days off. One winter the snow drifted about three feet deep in some places along the road and then it froze on top. We walked on top of it to go to school.

We put up vegetables and fruit for winter and we did not need many groceries. When we needed to go to the store, we would put some chickens in a burlap bag and my best friend, Pauline Young, and I would walk across the mountain to a small store that was owned by Alton Sink.

After we did our shopping, we would visit with friends that lived along the road. We really enjoyed our shopping trip.

One year at Christmas, I popped corn and strung it to decorate my Christmas tree. A neighbor had a billy goat and the goat got in the house and ate the popcorn from my tree.

Everyone could take time to visit neighbors. Today everybody is in a hurry to get from place to place.

One old lady that I once knew said, "We don't have much money but if you are healthy and happy, then you are wealthy." That is so true both then and now. If you are healthy then you can work for a living, but if you have bad health all the money in the world won't do you any good.