Monday, September 29, 2008

Traveling With Women

Grand Rivers, KY
I just got back from a long trip with three women. There was my bride of 37 years, my mother in-law, and Lena. I only had real trouble with one of them.
I think everyone has disagreements while traveling but my wife and I do okay. She lets me think I’m right. And I had very little trouble with my mother in-law. I would have to occasionally remind her that “You know, we’re a long way from home to be saying stuff like that.”
Then there was Lena. Lena is the name we’ve given to our GPS device. She can talk, and we have begun to think of her as another person in the car. Lena is fairly reliable, she’s opinionated and she is not always correct when we’re on the road. Unlike myself.
For instance there was the time in Amarillo when she directed us to a J. C. Penney store. When we arrived at “Your destination on right” I couldn’t help but notice it looked similar to a single story ranch home complete with stucco and a tile roof and a two car garage. It looked just like every other house for as far as I could see. I parked in the driveway and began to get out. My wife asked me what I was doing and I told her “I thought we were going to buy a dress.” “Stay in the car, you know darned well that that’s just a house.” Well, I had just about had it with our fancy little device that day but we later found out someone’s thumb had brushed the screen and changed the address that Lena was looking for. But the aggravating thing for me was that she knew that we were looking for a clothing store and should have known better than to take us into a residential area. She can even talk for crying out loud.
On our recent trip we were in the Grand Rivers, KY area, we had just eaten dinner and we were headed to our hotel. Darkness was upon us and as I got back out to the highway I began to turn right when Lena and my wife and my mother in-law all said to turn left. We were trying to find our hotel. A ’debate’ began about where our hotel was located. I said “there is nothing south of here but trees, it’s a state park, and we were just there two hours ago, our hotel is north of here up on the interstate.”
I lost the ‘debate’ and we went south until we heard Lena say “arriving at destination on right.” I pulled off the highway and up to a tree. Well, actually it was several hundred thousands of trees. I said “Hold that thing up to the window and show her the trees and ask her if that looks like a hotel to her.”
When we checked into our hotel my wife mentioned to the lady that we had had trouble finding the place. The lady behind the counter calmly said, “You must have one of those GPS devices, they don’t have our location correct, they think we’re in the state park south of town.”
All of this takes me back to when times were simpler. To when all we had was an out of date map and I could wonder aimlessly until I succumbed to one of my wife’s requests to please stop and ask directions. But I know we must advance with the times and these little mapping devices are pretty handy. However ours has been wrong a couple of times and so we question everything she tells us. However she does add a touch of uncertainty and excitement to an otherwise long, boring drive.
But then again, so would diarrhea.
~From the Midwest Producer Magazine and the Burt County Plaindealer. ~

Friday, September 26, 2008

Wedded 37 Years Ago Today...

~picture is circa 1971~
I've heard and read that the greastest gift you can give your children is to show them how much you love their Mother.
Even though you would probably also enjoy something with a bow and wrapping paper, for now let me just say that I still love your Mother and that's the way it is going to stay. I'd do it all again.
Marilyn is different than all of the girls I've ever known. She would go out with me.
Looking at the picture I know what you're thinking, Yes, I should have been arrested. Somehow we have this picture taken when we were in junior high and we didn't meet until we were in college. I know that is about how I look now but Marilyn has aged ever so slightly.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Football Saturday

Our daughter was playing the organ for a funeral yesterday so it fell upon us to get our oldest grandson to a flag football game about 2o miles from the farm. The football player is 10 years old and is in no way a smart alec so the following conversation was particularly funny at the time. We were on the road and:
Grandma: So, what's your number?
C: We don't have numbers.
Grandma: You don't have numbers?
C: No.
Grandma: Well how can we tell who the players are:
C: By our faces.
They don't wear helmets it turns out.
In the 'as luck would have it' department, He carried the ball only one time but I had my Rebel in my hands and already turned on so I got the following picture.

Monday, September 15, 2008

To Kentucky and Back

We've been on a trip to find the location for our next family reunion. Marilyn and her Mother and I got home yesterday having driven from Hannibal, Missouri where we spent Saturday night. We were fortunate to have stopped in Hannibal. It was raining the last couple of hours whilst driving into the town and so we found a motel and hunkered down.
Yesterday morning we started out across Northern Missouri on highway 36. About half of that trip was through flooded farm ground. At one point they detoured us off of our side of the interstate that was under flood waters. All of this was the result of the remnants of Hurricane Ike.
I'm anxious to hear how Jim and Mrs Jim and Lucy have weathered the storm. Even if they didn't sustain substantial damage they surely will have been without things we've all grown accustomed to, like electricity. We've been through long spells without electricity a couple of times ourselves here on the farm because of ice storms. Once with 150 head of cattle in the feed yard. You can't help but come away with bad memories.
We'll keep checking on you Houstonites. Good luck.
Oh, the reunion, the big announcement to the family has yet to be made but it looks like The Land Between the Lakes in Kentucky and Tennessee is a likely favorite. Besides the narural beauty of the area it is brimming with a rich history.
We won't be far from Fort Henry and Fort Donnelson. They were civil war forts put in place to keep the Union forces from bringing supplies by boat into the south. It didn't work. A very young Gen U.S. Grant defeated a college friend of his at Fort Donnelson, a General Buckner. They had become friends at West Point Military Acad. Buckner had at one time helped pay Grants bills for him when he was in need.
During the battle, Buckner sent a messenger to see what "Terms" could be arranged for a surrender. Gen. Grant returned, "no terms except unconditional and immediate surrender can be accepted. I propose to move immediately upon your works." After that it was said the U. S. in U.S. Grant stood for Unconditional Surrender. He later did accept some 'terms' at other surrenders.
Well it was 38 degrees here this morning with a high of about 70 with bright sunshine expected. The weather for the next couple of months is why we live in Nebraska and why I won't be wondering far from here again for a while. Well the weather... and the upcoming harvest.

Friday, September 05, 2008

A Farmer: Out Standing In His Field

My Dad liked to play with words. He would make fun of newspaper articles that were incorrectly spelled or had the wrong meaning of the word. If we were driving through the country side he would say: "There is a farmer who is out standing in his field, he also is outstanding in his field. Here my eldest grandaughter is with me as I check for soybean aphids. The picture was taken a while back. We are both out standing. In the field.

The bottom pic is of another of our grandaughters, she is on the birthday present that Grandma and Grandpa gave to her a few weeks ago.
We should have kept this horse. It was the only equine on the farm that wasn't burning hay.

ALSO: I have a tree that has grown up enough to be in the way of my computer's view of the satelite. That is what I'm using as an excuse for not blogging enough. I'll try to do better. Anyone wanting to help sacrifice a tree in the name of technology, contact me. It's a siberian elm so don't worry, I can grow another fifty footer in two years.