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Rub A Dub, Dub, My Mom and a TubÖ

Story ID:8326
Written by:Charles Dishno (bio, contact, other stories)
Story type:Musings, Essays and Such
Location:Dillon Montana
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Rub A Dub, Dub, My Mom and a TubÖ
By Chuck Dishno

My Mother, Lura Hartman Dishno was born in 1897 in Missoula, Montana to a medium income family. She was the first of three children. Her Mother, Etta, came from a fairly well to do family like wise, her Father George. I am telling this so that you will understand that Mom was used to the finer things of life. Things that are now taken for granted but were a luxury in those early days, such as a telephone and a grand piano Maybe not many have a piano now but then it was normal for each home to have one in the parlor, and can you imagine a person, adult or kid not having a phone now?

All this changed when Mom met my Dad; a Big Hole cattle rancher who had recently lost his ranch due to the Great Depression. His brother who was living in Missoula and playing in a small orchestra introduced Pop to my Mom. Mom played a piano at the same orchestra.

It must have been love at first sight as they soon packed up and left for Oregon with Momís two boys from a previous and traumatic marriage. Pop had heard about a timber falling job near Deschutes River, Oregon. After packing Popís Model A Ford with Mom, her two boys, Frank and Bud from a previous marriage. This was about 1931 and the depression was in full swing so money was tight. Mom said that all they had was a promise of a job, a Ford and a large tent to live in. Mom said she saw much good in the man even though he was 13 years older. Pop must have been delighted as he now had a loving wife and two boys. He was a father at last.

In a few short months, Mom went from living in relative luxury to a tent on a riverbank in Oregon. None of this seemed to bother her and she just pitched right in and did her part. When you are in love, all else pales in comparison.

I am not sure how long the logging job lasted but they were soon off for new territory. They headed West and finally came to Klamath Falls. After a few days staying at the fairgrounds. Pop decided to go East where he heard of a possible job with the Oregon Highway Department about 75 miles away at Quartz Mountain Station.

On Quartz Mountain is where their life together really began. The job was a good paying one, especially in the difficult time of the depression. At that time Quartz Mountain was a striving community with some hearty souls, struggling it the hard times. Pop and Mom were able to rent a small cabin at the edge of meadow. This is where I was conceived and I have always referred to it as Conception Meadow. I tell friends that you can still see the depression in the ground, not of my conception but the frame of the house.

When Mom was about 6 months along, they moved to Bly, a town 14 miles away. Pop had bought a lot with 3 tar paper shacks butted together in a L shape. This is where I lived for the next 6 years. Actually lived there for 19 years but in newer quarters. Our original tar paper shacks burned to the ground in the summer of 1941. The entire town turned out and by the time school started we had a large 3-bedroom home and for the first time, Mom had hot and cold running water and an indoor bathroom. To her delight she finally had an Easy Washing Machine with wringers. She could now retire the old #3 galvanized wash tub that had served us so well for so many years both to wash clothes in but also to take our Saturday night baths. No more heating water on the wood cook stove as she also had a new electric range but kept the wood stove as a back-up. Pop knew he had married a true lady, as she never complained about the primitive conditions that accompanied her first few years with the man she loved. I know she must have missed the finer things in life that she grew up with but was always one who took things as they were dealt.

In 1949, Mom and Pop moved to Wilsonia, California for the summer while Pop worked as a timber faller. Once again, they lived in a small cabin with only cold water and no washing machine. So it was back to the galvanized tub for washing clothes and bathing. This occurred each year for the next 3 years. They eventually bought a small house in the mountains then a few years later, sold the house in Bly. They lived there until Pop died in 1959. Mom moved to Fresno and lived in a small apartment for well over 20 years before moving to Montana with Roz and I. She is buried here in Dillon and someday; Roz and I will lie beside her. I know I will never hear any complaining coming from her gravesite as that was not Momís make up.

Whenever I hear some of the young people, and a few of the older ones, complain about how hard they have it as they drive around in their SUVís talking on their ever present cell phones or just walking down the street texting on their I-Pads. I canít help to wonder if they could survive if they had to live the life my Mother did. I donít think so and they surely wouldnít do it in the name of the man they loved. God Bless you Mom. Thank you for bringing me up to think and act as you would.

Mom is in Heaven now and Iím sure if the washing facilities ever break down there, Mom will whip out a #3 wash tub and start scrubbing all the Angelic Robes with her trusty washboard and a bar of Heavenly soap..