I was reminiscing about selling our house when I was a teenager. My mom had fell in the basement and broken her leg a year earlier. She had to crawl up the stairs to the kitchen phone to call for help. No one was at home but herself. My dad got so upset that he decided that we were selling the house and moving to, of all things, a trailer.
Mother, Daddy and I began to scout the trailer parks in the area looking for a place to move to and a trailer to purchase. We were all actually excited about the deal. The plan was to have a big auction and sell all our possessions and to sell the house.
The house was in pretty good shape as Daddy was a fixer-upper. He had remodeled the basement into a family room complete with a fake fireplace. Years before we had taken bricks from an old firehouse that was torn down and Daddy built us a garage. One car with a huge workshop at the back and storage and a lovely porch where we used to sit and play guitars and sing or rotisserie a chicken or two for Sunday dinner.
The appointed day came and our house was emptied of all the possessions we were putting out for sale at the auction. People came from all over to buy our stuff. They also broke our stuff. The bedroom suits were set out and people used them as their couch. So many sat on them that they broke them down and so we didn’t get quite as much for those as we had expected. (Whatever happened to if you break it, you buy it?)
When it came time for Daddy’s tractor to be sold, I went to my old bedroom which was farthest away from the back of the house. I went into the closet and cried my eyes out. Daddy loved his tractor. We had a huge garden in our back yard. In fact, most of the back yard was a garden. Daddy bought the tractor to make it easier for us to maintain the garden. He also plowed garden plots for people in the area to make a little extra money. He washed the damn tractor and painted it a bright red. He was so very proud of his tractor. And now he was selling it. It just broke my heart.
Bad photo, yes, but it all I have.
I didn’t want to move and especially to a trailer park. Dear God! Trailer trash here we come. We moved into our new Hollywood trailer which my parents and people around us insisted was a mobile home.
At our home I was the youngest child and therefore had my choice of the two extra bedrooms. I choose both of them. I kept my stuff in one and slept in the other one. It was a big adjustment getting used to my new bedroom which was about 8’ by 8’. I had a built in chest of drawers and cabinets under my closet for storage.
I lived in that mobile home for several years. In my first year at college my friend, Pat, and I moved into an apartment near our college and so I got away from it for a while. My parents insisted that I come home every weekend and so I took a job at a local restaurant and worked there on weekends. You might wonder why I wanted to get away from my “home”. I could not go into my bedroom and read, for cripes sake. They thought I was mad at them. So I had to sit in the living room or at the dining room table and read and do my homework for school. There was just not room for privacy.
Quite a few years later when my sister retired, she moved into a mobile home just around the corner from my parents. When I visited I usually stayed with my aunt at her farm. She had an apartment in her garage and we stayed there. We also had all of our family Thanksgivings and Christmases in that garage. There was much more room to party than a mobile home.
I don’t believe I have ever admitted to anyone that I had lived in a trailer. It’s not like it was a piece of garbage but there is still that stigma of trailer trash around me.
My hatred of mobile homes is still with me. Although being retired I do dream of downsizing from our huge house to a smaller place. I don’t want to clean much anymore and this house is a lot to maintain.
“I’m just glad I don’t live in a trailer.” Thank you Jimmy Buffet. My thoughts exactly.
Now, my dear readers, you know another of my little secrets.