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7/20/12

Family Memories


I sat in the truck while Dave filled the truck's gas tank up. Being a nosy sort of person, I watched as people pulled into the gas station, filled up their cars, then left.

It wasn't long when a snazzy SUV pulled to the opposite side of where we were parked. Almost immediately it leaves only to circle the pump and park at it again. Once again it pulls away circling the pump, then parking at the same pump again.

When it pulled away for the third time, it dawned on me that whoever was driving couldn't figure out how to park the SUV so that the gas pump and gas tank of the vehicle were on the same side. The smile which filled my face came from a memory of my mother, in this same sort of situation, many years ago.

We lived in a small West Texas town call Monahans, at that time. This has no significance on this story, other than to mention the miles between towns tend to be many. With that thought in mind mom realized she'd need to fill the gas tank up, so she pulled into one of the local gas stations.

Fortunate for her the first pumping area was open, she pulls in, turns off the car and gets out to fill'er up. As she's getting ready to put the pumping hose into the car, she realizes the gas tank is on the opposite side of the gas hose.

Getting back into the car she drives around the pump, gets out, and yes, the gas tank is once again on the opposite side. Puzzled, she attempts to get the tank on the right side three more times.

Finally, madder than a disturbed hen and no closer to matching the gas hose up with the gas tank, she pulls the line across the trunk of the car and fills up.
Satisfied with the thought she'd beaten the gas pump, she enters the gas station.

Much to her dismay, once she gets inside, a round of applause reaches her ears. Not only is the gas station owner clapping, all the men inside are clapping too.

The owner says to her, "Lady we were praying you didn't run out of gas before you figured out a way to get gas in your car."

For the longest time her story was told within our family circle. We'd share it with others as well, much to her dismay.

As that memory fades, I realize the lady next to us finally figured it out and was filling up her gas tank. I wanted to tell her I was afraid she was going to run out of gas before she got it right. I didn't, but I laughed out loud as the memory of mom faded.

As we were leaving the parking lot, I decided it was a good time to give mom a call and share with her what I'd witnessed. She'd remember what had happened to her and more than likely she'd hang up on me...

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