I think it was when I was eight. My family went to see Grandma and Grandpa. We often did that since we’d moved to their town; from southern California back to my parents’ hometown in Kansas. We’d go visit with them for the day and maybe we’d get some ice cream and then go back to the house my mother had grown-up in to watch Hee Haw. Sometimes we went over there early and drove out to the lake for a picnic and Grandpa would “Aw, Hell!” at me for fishing wrong. He’d taught me, so I was reflecting on him. This was one of those days.
Every time we went somewhere Grandpa always drove and always in his car. Those were the rules. It was in the 1980s, so some cars still had bench seats in front. That day Grandpa said, “Well, c’mon, get in. We ain’t got all day.”
I went towards the open back door to sit next to Grandma before my sister got that prized seat and Grandma said, “Go get up front.”The front seat was for Grandpa and Dad.
“Nuh-uh!” I could not believe my luck.
“Yes, Cane. You sit up front with the men now.” That’s the way it was until the bench was too small for all three of us, Grandpa, Dad, and I.