Stories from the Stringam Family Ranches of Southern Alberta

From the 50s and 60s to today . . .



Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Oak Memories

One of the vast displays.
Notice the barrel, off to the right...

I guess if one had to pick a theme for this blog, that theme would be ‘Memories’.
Mostly mine, but occasionally, someone else’s.
Today is one of the ‘someone else’s’.
Throughout his career, Husby worked as a project manager for every one of our amazing world-class Alberta museums. 19 of them. Much of his time was spent in a large, rather stuffy office, but frequently, he was on the road doing actual, physical . . . stuff.
During office time, take-a-child-to-work-day wasn’t possible. But when he was on the road . . .  
Our middle son, Duff, loved to go with his dad to work.
The construction of the Reynolds Museum in nearby Wetaskiwin was nearing completion. The buildings were up. The inside displays were ongoing. And it was this need that was being addressed when Husby loaded Duff into the truck and headed for the nearby farm outfitters.
There they purchased what was, to eight-year-old Duff, a HUGE oak barrel.
Loading it into the back, they headed for the museum, where Duff made a bee-line for his usual hidey-hole in one of the center’s vast closets and switched on the video he had been watching the last time he had come to work with Dad.
He loved it in there. People would come by to get something and greet the small boy with a smile and a ‘which video are you watching now?’ greeting.
Then the big day came for the grand opening, attended by thousands.
As Husby’s family, we were given preferential treatment, being admitted hours before everyone else for a first glimpse.
We wandered through the amazing displays, ooh-ing and ah-ing on command.
One of the kids got thirsty and we stopped at a water fountain to get a drink.
“That’s my barrel!” Duff said excitedly.
Sure enough, the water fountain had been constructed using a large oak barrel as the base. Fitting it right into the ‘farm’ theme of the central floor of the museum.
Perfect.
Moving forward fifteen years . . .
As a young man, Duff visited the Reynolds Museum once more with a group of friends. They wandered through the displays, again ooh-ing and ah-ing on command.
Duff stopped at the water fountain, still housed in the oak barrel. It didn’t seem quite as huge now.
But it still brought back the memories.
Of time spent with his father.

8 comments:

  1. It will always be his barrel. Maybe one day he’lL take his chiythere. A sweet story.

    ReplyDelete
  2. it looks like a beautiful museum, has Duff ever taken his own children to see 'his' barrel there?

    ReplyDelete
  3. I love the treasure trove of memories you mine for your posts.

    ReplyDelete
  4. ...and I have good memories if the Reynold's museum.

    ReplyDelete
  5. It must have been so special to go into the museum and have it to yourself.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Wow !!! absolutely fantastic blog. I am very glad to have such useful information.

    ดูหนัง

    ReplyDelete
  7. How amazing about your husby and his job. He has created a lasting body of work, I would think.

    Great story about your son's reactions to the barrel :) It's so true that things look smaller as we grow up.

    ReplyDelete

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