Remonstrate : make a forcefully reproachful protest / argue in protest or opposition
My mate Tim lived on a farm not far out of town and we would often go out there to see what was happening and more importantly to see what his dad was up to.
His dad was a man who had worked his whole life and loved being a farmer. But he was an emotional man and many was the time we ventured out to the farm to be entertained by Tim’s dad. He didn’t do it deliberately, at least he never thought so but so often he would be out on the tractor at the far end of the south paddock when he would remember something.
This was in the days before mobile phones and walkie-talkies. We arrived this one afternoon to see Tim’s dad standing on the seat of his tractor waving his hat in the air attracting his wife’s attention who was often on the back veranda watching with curiosity the remonstrating of her husband.
Tim’s mum would be waving back, Tim’s dad would be getting angrier as obviously his message wasn’t getting through.
We’d stand there watching, suppressing the desire to laugh as to do so to an angry man only exacerbated the issue.
We didn’t need to laugh to make matters worse, as after a while he’d stop waving, stand there looking incredulously at us and then as an act of sheer frustration at our obvious inability to read his actions would throw his hat down and stamp his foot.
The comic value of his actions stayed with me and he would often be seen out on the farm gesturing to the house only to have us look blankly at each other.
I remember one day when his waving reached an almost frenzied state we thought he might pull his shoulder out of its socket and I turned to Tim’s mum and asked her what he was remonstrating about.
Tim’s mum was a very dry woman: “I haven’t got a clue.” she said dipping her hand into the bag of peas she was shelling and going on with what she was doing. “He’ll be up here to say if it’s all that important.”
I looked back to see Tim’s dad deliver his hat once again into the dirt.