Sunday, December 2, 2018


It'll be right there on the corner on the right hand side as you pull into town.  You can't miss it. 
It says, "Clancy's" in big red letters across the top of a white garage.  There are two pumps right out front.  Used to stick out like a sore thumb when it was new, but that's the place to fuel up or fix a tire.  Clancy's always been pretty handy that way.  He can fix just about anything with wheels, even wagons.  Most folks knew better than to ask him though, and he'd help folks if need be, but he'd mostly send 'em down the road to the livery.  See, his dad Virgil owned the livery so Clancy grew up fixin' things with wheels.  
It was rough on both of 'em when Clancy decided to open the garage.  Like any father/son operation, Virgil had hoped to one day hand the reigns over to his son.  Thing is, Virgil was still goin' strong, and Clancy was beyond the age when most fellas spring the nest.  The other thing both noticed but neither spoke of was the increasing number of auto-carriages about.  It took its toll on the value of the livery though Virgil kept the business side to himself.  
After workin' together from the time Clancy was old enough to recognize the tools asked for, going to work a couple blocks apart seemed like miles for both of 'em.  Neither wished the other any ill will; it 'as the opposite actually.  Each wanted the other to do well and 'as cautions not to take work from him you see.  The remarkable part 'as regardless uh how difficult it 'as for Virgil and Clancy to adjust, it worked out purty good for the town folks.  The wagons 'ud make their way to one end of the town and the auto-cars 'ud keep to the other so that horses weren't spooked near as much as in towns where the wagons and auto-cars were tryin' to get to the same place.  Oh there 'as the occasional foreigner who'd race through and stir up some havoc, but I s'poze that gave folks somethin' to talk about.
Why one time after Clancy had been open for a few years, it was Halloween.  Back then oft' times the young folks 'ud pull pranks on Halloween.  I don't hear uh that 'nymore.  Well those kids, they took a car that was parked at Clancy's and sat it right across the entry to the livery, and took a wagon and parked it right in front of the pumps so Clancy couldn't sell no gas, huh.  It was the darndest thing watchin' the folks who had to wait at both places.  Virgil and Clancy just kinda shook their heads and went to work to set it to right.  See the car, it didn't run, and the wagon was broken so it all took some doin'.  They ended up gettin' Hank Morton's big feed sled and team and was able to push the car up on it.  They got it back down to the garage, but gettin' that broken wagon up on the sled was a bit more of a challenge.  After a lot of work and pullin' uh ropes though, they managed.  How those kids did it in one night, I'll never know.  That seems like just yesterday.  I can still see 'em all plain as day just like they were.  Only most of 'ems gone now.  
The livery burnt down years ago.  Clancy's still there though, but doesn't work on many cars no more.  I should go see him.  I used to stop in when he got that machine.  You could put your coins in it and get a Coca-Cola straight from the machine cold as could be.  There were a few of us who'd stop by and visit while he was workin' on a car - or help if he needed.  Then in the winter, he always kept a pot uh coffee goin'.  He had him this empty coffee can and cut a slit in the top like so, and we'd all add to the can so he could keep makin' us coffee, huh huh.  
He's alright that Clancy.  If you stop in, you tell him I say Hi. 

(You should be able to click on the picture and be directed to the source.)