I Don’t Have a Back Door, But If I did….

south-carolina-5001 water oaks

…the view would look like this picture of Water Oaks in a South Carolina State Park. Why? Because, that’s why.

Okay, I’ll save you from hours of wondering why. Because I grew up with back doors, back doors that people used to enter your house, back doors that always saw more action, and fun, and excitement, and anger and…well, you get the idea.

No matter where we lived, hardly anybody used the front door of the house. If we heard a knock, we always went to the back door first. Only strangers and salesmen, and in one place, hobos trying to go to Florida using US 301, knocked on the front door.

There’s one more thing you need to know that will clinch this: we always lived right next door to the church. The pastor? My daddy. So when somebody came to the front door, we knew not to wait for Daddy to answer it. We did. All five of us crowded around our Mom, answering the door.

Because my Mom had a talent: the nice polite Southern No thank you. Even the hobos said Yes, Ma’am to our Mom. And went on their way.

Only once did we break that rule. Only once did we open the door wide to strangers. When?

In the early 70s, in our area, there came an extremely hard winter, including ice on the trees and the roads. Then, it snowed. So, the main road to anywhere around us became a parking lot of northerners headed for Florida but stuck tight.

Dad opened up the church fellowship hall to these folks. The church kitchen had a big gas stove and gas heat. Farmers brought their tractors and pulled the cars off the road into the big front parking lot. The wives brought food and sheets and blankets. We fed the folks while we waited for the ice and snow to melt.

One farmer brought his backhoe to the road and scraped down the snow and ice after a couple of days. The strangers, who were strangers no more, got into their cars and headed south, extra food packed in their coolers.

The next time a knock came at the front door, I answered it. It was the mailman with a handful of cards. Thank You cards from some of the folks we had helped.

So yes, I love back doors. But sometimes front doors can be a blessing, too


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