Quickly closing the barn door, I rubbed my hands together.
"It sure is cold out there, Grandda! Do you suppose it's going to snow some more tonight?"
"Did you happen to look at the sky on your way to the barn?"
"Ya always check out the sky, boy. Clear sky at night, sailor's delight. Gonna be clear sailin', then. Grey skies at mornin', sailor take warnin'. Gonna be bad weather. Now, you go back out, look up at the sky."
I went back out and looked up. The sky was filled with stars, and the moon was round, as well.
"It's not going to snow," I told them when I went back in.
"Good," said Grandda, "tonight and tomorrow are going to be long ones."
"Why, Grandda?" Les wanted to know.
"Well, cause we'll be up all night tonight having the Wake, and then we'll be havin' the funeral and buryin' tomorrow."
"What's a Wake?" Marie piped up.
Grandda looked at Marie, "Haven't you ever been to Wake? What about your Da's wake?"
"No, we didn't have one for him, Grandda," I answered for Marie. "Ma told us that we couldn't bury him. We had no money to pay for a funeral or to bury him. We barely had enough for us to live on. I guess he didn't save any money. He spent it all on..." My voice dipped and I couldn't say any more.
"On what, boy? What did he spend his money on?"
That meant that Grandda didn't know what kind of life we had. How would I tell him what it was like; or what our Da was like on the weekends? Would he even believe me? What would it do to him, now at this time, with Grandma lying in her casket in the house?"
(To be continued)