August 28, 2014
Mrs. Doc watched the dancers swirl around the cleared hardwood floor of the Legion hall, and smiled to see her husband, Doc, waltzing with Ardis Fisher. But Mrs. Doc was never one to sit out a waltz, so she looked around at the menu.
Over in the corner, smiling and tapping his foot, was Pop Walker. Pop and several other residents of the Rest of Your Life retirement home were there to enjoy the dance and celebrate summer. Pop has a hard time with his memory, these days, but always forgets things with a smile.
“Pop,” said Mrs. Doc, “how about a dance?”
“Why sure … uh?”
“Right. Mrs. Doc.”
Pop had learned to waltz back when more people did it, and the decades had smoothed his dance steps with the fine sanding of time. It was a pleasure for Mrs. Doc to go around the floor with him.
She smiled and winked at her husband as she and Pop danced by. Doc grinned and swirled a fancy di-do with Ardis, just to show off. Then she and Pop got closer to the bandstand and there was Dud Campbell playing his accordion. He looked happy and surrealistic in the muted reddish lights on the stage. Next to him sat Carla Martinez, playing rhythm guitar and smiling out on her town and her life. Jim Albertson was up there, too, playing the waltz’s melody on the harmonica, and trading the lead with Jasper Blankenship on his fiddle.
As she and Pop Walker danced away, the bandstand receded in a blur of light and sound. Passing like ships in the night were Dewey Decker with Mavis from the Mule Barn truck stop. Mavis’s hair is growing back in since the treatments, giving everyone in the valley just one more reason to be thankful. Randy Jones and Katie Burchell sailed by on wings of love.
The waltz ended and Pop walked Mrs. Doc to her seat.
“Thanks for the dance, er … honey,” he said.
“Thank you, Pop.”
The people who dance through our lives give us the reason to get up and get dressed each day.
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August 20, 2014
The speculating began Thursday again. You see, when it’s either too hot or too cold or too windy or the snow’s too deep or we just get tired of thinking about work, we speculate.
It’s one of our favorite sports.
August 15, 2014
Every hunter knows places to look for in the woods … places where game is more likely to be approached or surprised. It’s that way with Windy Wilson, too.
August 6, 2014
We walked quietly out and looked toward the west. It seems as though everyone did. Neighbors were out and the dogs were racing around trying to set new yard-to-yard speed records.
July 31, 2014
Harley pulled the tractor over to the ditch and cut the engine. He climbed stiffly down, walked to the water and soaked his head and shirt. Then he looked around.
No cars were coming down the county road. No one at the house could see him. So he smiled, sat on a rock and leaned back against the ditch bank.
A farmer’s recliner, he thought, wiggling slightly to avoid kidney puncture by a twig. He was smiling that dignified farmer’s smile on the outside but laughing on the inside.
“So nice to just rest here for a minute in the sun,” he thought.
Oh, he wouldn’t have done it if he’d left the engine running. Waste of gas. But the engine was off, all the seeds were in for this year, and all he was doing was plowing summer fallow now. No rush. Do it any time.
So Harley locked his hands behind his head, lay back against the ditch grass, and just looked around.
Marshmallow clouds today against a dark blue sky. Crows flying in to Harley’s fields from Roger’s. He paused a moment and went from pure observation to learning toward philosophy.
He considered that fences and land deeds and farming contracts meant nothing to these birds. There was more than a bit of envy there, but just for a minute.
Harley stood, stretched his back and drank from the canteen on the tractor.
Crows didn’t worry about deeds, he thought, but hey, they didn’t get to watch football in the fall, either.
All in all, on a nice summer’s day like this, there’s nothing wrong with being a farmer.
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July 24, 2014
Dud Campbell, our resident would-be novelist, was busy on his day off. Anita watched him excitedly as he removed something from the box that had arrived. It was a CD.
July 16, 2014
Things were going kinda slow down at the Fly Tying Love Center and it bothered Marvin Pincus a lot.
July 10, 2014
Like a doctor removing something important, Herb Collins gently peeled the wrapper back from the root ball and tenderly placed the baby tree in the hole. Then he stood and walked around it to see which way he should align it. Actually, looks pretty good just the way it is.
July 3, 2014
Windy celebrates the Fourth creatively
Windy Wilson was on the prowl, this beautiful Independence Day morning, searching the neighborhood for something to do for others. He decided to let his weekly day helping others come on the Fourth this week, because he was feeling very American.
June 25, 2014
Windy shares a tale about a shook-up picnic
On a good, warm Saturday morning, you have your choice here in our valley: Yard sales or livestock sales. Since Windy didn’t need have much of a need to rummage through stacks of doilies or record albums starring Patti Page or the Kingston Trio, he headed for the sale barn.