There was a trailer court in Wathena Ks called Gaslight Acres. It was on the south side of 36 highway just as you were leaving town. There were trailers on both sides of the street. I stopped in at the office and talked to a lady named Phyllis who owned the court with her ex husband and said that trailer number 9 was available. It was a long brown trailer with two bedrooms and a cute little kitchen facing the street. It had a window air conditioner that I found out later during the heat of the summer, didn't work. There was cold air coming in through the outlets and every crook and cranny which were many. It was more like living in a glorified cardboard box. I moved with the help of Phyllis' ex son-in-law who only had an SUV-type vehicle so he had to lay my new refrigerator on its side, breaking the icemaker motor in the process. We set it upright, the refrigerator still worked but the icemaker would only work if you bought the ice yourself and put it in the icemaker drawer.
Jenny moved in with me. She was still fighting Lance for custody of Brandy. She had met a boy at the Pizza Hut, you'll remember, named Neal. Neal had a fast little sports car and Jenny was thrilled. Charles had met a girl, yes I said girl, at the Casey's General store in Wathena and was well on his way to being in love again. She was 26 years old and had been married five times already and was in fact engaged to someone else when they met. She would agree to marry, then when someone else came along she thought she liked better she'd get a divorce and move on to her next victim. I had asked Charles what he was going to do if she did that to him. He said, “We’ve talked about that and we are both so in love and happy that that's not going to be a problem!” They were married in the spring of 1992 at the farm. I had to sell my pool to make room for the gazebo she wanted and they were married in the gazebo. His friends from work warned him and I tried to warn him but he wasn't listening to anything I had to say, our amicable divorce went out the window when he met her. Whatever Deanna said was straight from God's mouth. I wasn't allowed on the property I had paid for with my student loan money that wasn't supposed to be spent on anything but schooling, a student loan that I am still paying on by the way, and she absolutely hated Chuck! She had six children of her own. She’d tell Charles to beat him for this and that and he would without question. He beat him with a stick once and when it broke he picked up a piece of tin and whaled away with that. I had told the judge at our divorce hearing but he said that was another case for another time but if I wanted to file child abuse charges I could. Charles openly admitted it in court in front of the judge. Chuck didn't want to pursue it and I didn't to go to court again so I made him promise to never let it happen again or I would. He promised, as he had promised years ago in Denton when he knocked me down and proceeded to stomp me in front of Jenny when she was five years old. He never did that again. About three months into the marriage Deanna had met a tall good looking man in a bar and was instantly in love and had the idea that he would marry her if she left Charles, so she did but he didn't.
I had met a man in April of 1992.I liked playing pool and had a pool table at home off and on. In the basement of the house in Denton we had a pool table. My brother Bobby came over on my birthday, either the 24th or 25th birthday. I know I had bought Terre on my 24th birthday so I don't remember if it was that day or the next year, anyway, we played pool. Mary Ann and Floy Mae came to show him the way up there. I remember laughing and having a good time.
Charles had been somewhat of a pool shark and could beat the pants off anybody. We used to go to Mary Ann and Bobby's trailer. They had bought some land south of Agency Mo. Bobby, Mary Ann's husband, was a builder in his spare time, just something he liked to do, he had built a room onto the trailer so they could have a pool table. On the weekends we would go down there and play pool and cards and eat dinner. When They divorced they had to sell the property. So they sold to the conservation dept. They had peacocks and chickens and ducks and geese. There was a big pond out back on the south side of the property in the woods they kept stocked with fish. They liked horseback riding too after we bought our horses so they bought two horses, Star and Solomon. Star was a big quarter horse and Solomon was a small palomino that wasn't broke as well. Charles had been riding him one day to break him in for Mary Ann when he reared up and rolled over on him. He wouldn't go to the Doctor even if we had had the money to pay for one. He had a few cuts and bruises, it wasn't very long, maybe a couple of hours and he was right back up there, in the saddle ready to go again. Mary Ann treated Solomon as a pet. He was a friendly horse and he was pretty. Star on the other hand was a good riding Quarter horse. She was "fine broke" as they would say. I liked riding her because she would respond the same as Terre. One day when we still lived in Denton we put Terre in the trailer Charles had made with her picture drawn on the side and drove to Mary Ann’s. We all went riding all over the countryside. Clyde had rented the old farm on 116 where I had spent the years from five to fourteen. We were so glad that the farm was back in the family. The old well down at the barn where we had to haul water in 2/12 gallon buckets on each arm had gone dry. So Clyde had to move again. Charles and I stopped over there with the horse trailer and I got to ride my horse all over the property just like I had always wanted to do when I was a little girl. When Mary Ann and Bobby were married in 1962 there was a furniture store called "Old Man Jackson's" that advertised to give away a pony to anyone that would buy a whole living room full of furniture. Mr. Nickle, Bobby’s father, was going to cosign a loan for them to get the furniture they needed. They were going to give me the pony! But Mr. Nickle said there was no need for a whole room full of furniture, they were moving to a trailer in Dearborn and they only needed a few things. I waited with my face pressed against the glass window pane and waited and waited for the arrival of my new pony. I was nine years old. They finally came back, no horse trailer, no pony.
I had met Bill after work at a bar on the Belt highway. I thought he was cute and we danced to the music. I was very naive as I hadn't done anything my whole life except be married and trying to survive the upsets that life threw at us for twenty years. I trusted too much and sympathized too much. He had long blond hair and blue eyes and straight white teeth he flashed every time he looked my way. He was an Alan Jackson look a like.
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