and her sister were sifting through the muddy waters of politics and were
still not able to comprehend the why and for of it. "Of course,
national politics had not a clue as to compare to the fierce maneuvering
of family upheaval." Ella commented.
"Can you remember that
little dog we had you named, "Tiny?" Ella asked.
"Um-m!" She was
often gracious and tolerant of her older sister's rambling, but often deep
into her own problems and lifestyle so as not to be overly interested in
this or that memory.
"He was a Rat
Terrier." Ella was master at catching the busy people's attention
just as she had to do when they were children and often too busy with
their play to answer.
"Oh yes, a Terrier, for
sure." Sister was now remembering.
The move they had made to the
ancient old dilapidated farm house of her grandmother's was a memory none
of them wanted to call up, very much. Especially, since they had before
lived under the more perfect conditions of their father's ranching
family's protection. To leave the civilization of that community to come
to this relatively rough area was difficult. But then, difficult was
hardly the right word. It could have been more like trauma without the
determination and focus of their parents. The politics of the family had
torn brothers' apart leaving a gaping split. This tear had left the
ranches abandoned, desolate, standing fully furnished and available, but
vacant. The brothers were both too proud to bend and too sure of their own
rightness so that they would not come to any agreement.
The hardest part of this new
environment to accept were the large rats to inhabit the buildings and out
buildings of the place. These animals were so human like in their
personalities it was hard to believe they were very large rodents.
Their mother and father had
fought the creatures with every possible way of extermination from
poisoning to shooting them with small weapons. So slick and clever were
they, it was an incredible imprint left on the children's minds. If the
rats ever caught your gaze for a moment, they were disdainful, seeming to
stare any person down, directly holding an arrogant look from their eyes,
before they were off and gone.
Their mother had been educated
in the culture of the Anglo-American. Father had grown up and been tutored
through the oil wealth of his family. Neither of them was ready to deal
with the scourge of these wily little beasts.
At this time one of the
farmer's wives of the area had invited the family to an evening meal. Sue
was a tall, slow talking, deliberate, steady woman married to a man of
equal intelligence. Their parents had pioneered this land. The old farm
house where they lived for all out side appearances was ancient. Only when
one entered through a side porch was a treat given to the guest there from
special invitation. Gone was the feel of a country place. Everything was
modern and attractive in its decor. It was as someone held your head in
their hands demanding that you all at once see the striking opposites of
the two worlds, outside and inside.
However, this was not the only
education the children would receive at this time. Their mother had
complained to Sue about the problem with the rats. As they were leaving,
Sue had the little Rat Terrier dogs brought out from the barn.
The runt of the litter was
small and this is what led to their little sister giving him, his name.
"OH Look!" "He is so tiny."
From that day on the little
dog won his place in the sun. The small pet wasn't much bigger than the
rats he would set upon in an instant. They couldn't get away from him. He
was quick beyond belief. In an instant he was upon the pest, grasping them
with his jaws locked upon their neck. The rapid back and forth shaking of
the animal would instantly kill the vermin. He seemed to have no interest
in eating the things. His only purpose appeared to be his adamant hate for
them. One by one, carefully, and meticulously the place was made clean and
free of the rats.
"Do you think Sue Mac.
will fault me for remembering her as the lady who cleaned our place up
from rats?" Ella again spoke to her sister.
"I'm sure she would be
proud to have had the honor!" Ella's sister, in her tiny stature,
smiled as she was a favorite of the farm-oriented lady and had her own
sweet memories too.