Those aren't turkey tracks
By CURT SWARM
I’ve written before about the interesting things that happen on sales appointments. Here’s a goodie: As I pulled into this particular rural address, the first thing I noticed was a sprawling country estate, complete with a pond on each side of a tree-lined lane. You can’t help but like a place like that. There was also a small windmill close to one of the ponds. The windmill had the name of the home owners on its fantail: Margie and Ray. It was whirling its heart out on this balmy day, with clouds intermixed with sunshine to give that warm/cold feeling. I was to find out later, that the windmill powered an aerator for the ponds. I’ve seen solar-powered aerators before, but never wind powered.
There were all kinds of interesting things to look at as I drove the quarter-mile lane up to the ranch home. There were a couple of antique tractors, one red and one green, i.e., a Farmall and a John Deere (This is highly unusual. People are typically one or the other.); geese on the ponds, and what looked to be an old Civil War cannon mounted on wooden wheels. I was also to find out later that Margie had grown up on a John Deere farm, and Ray, Farmall. Ah, ha.
There was fresh snow on the ground. As I walked up to the front door, I spied, and couldn’t believe, what looked to be turkey tracks going up to, and back from, the front door. In all my years of selling, and living in Iowa, I have never seen turkey tracks going up to a front door.
I was welcomed into the house by a very nice lady and her husband, Margie and Ray. Of course, I commented on the turkey tracks. “Those aren’t turkey tracks,” I was told. “They’re peacock. We have five of ’m. In a few minutes, they’ll be back up to the door to see who the stranger is.”
Sure ’nuff, after getting situated, there was a pecking at the front door. The main door was open, and a clear glass storm door closed, to let in the sunshine. Those crazy peacocks were pecking at the glass, and looking in like they wanted to be part of the group. They seemed to be saying, “We’ll be good. We won’t poop on the floor.”
We went about our business, and it wasn’t long before we heard a commotion on the roof of the house. It was a skittering noise, like something running across the roof. “Them blame peacocks,” Ray shook his head. “They’re on the roof. They just can’t stand it when you don’t pay attention to them.” Margie and Ray’s house was a type of berm structure, with the ground coming up to near the roof in the back of the house.
We finished our business, and the conversation turned to dancing. Margie told me that she and Ray still go dancing occasionally, and that in their day, they cut a pretty mean rug. As you may have guessed, Margie and Ray are senior citizens.
Perhaps I looked skeptical, but Margie felt obligated to demonstrate. They had an old phonograph, and Margie put on an LP, “Dancing With My Darling.” Even though it was a waltz, Margie and Ray did a smooth two-step on their hardwood floor, obviously having fun and enjoying themselves.
Outside on the porch, we could see the peacocks through the glass door. They were bunched up, and moving around, almost in time with the music What made it even more comical was that the peacocks were molting, and looking rather raggedy in their winter plumage, like orphans milling about outside a winter concert.
Call Disney! You can’t write this stuff.
Have a good story? Call or text Curt Swarm in Mt. Pleasant at 319-217-0526, email him a firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit his website at www.empty-nest-words-photos-and-frames.com