The question

August 15, 2017

Just got home from a visit with Dad and now have the chance to
put some thoughts here. As always we talked of everything from
the nut with bowl haircut to numerous bills received after one
leaves the hospital.

We talked of how we believe this is going to be a cold, snowy,
winter and how the last few have been mild whick accounts for
the larger population of birds and other critters. If nothing
else it’s always interesting.

His caregiver asked what I was going to do later and I replied
that trying out a new lens was a priority. Which led to the
inevitable question of “what do you take pictures of?” Followed
by “do you sell them?”

Well, I take pictures of everything and anything and don’t sell
them as it is a hobby of mine. So I take pictures of whatever I
find interesting at the time the camera is out. I never had a
class on photography and didn’t realize one must specialize.

I could almost guarantee that if I came across a purple gorilla
jumping rope on a street corner, and had my camera, I would get
a picture. I don’t try to sell them because they are of interest
to me and may not even be marketable.

Enough rambling, enjoy our Tuesday as we won’t get another
until next week. Now I’m going to finish a few chores so I can
try out that lens.
Comments are always welcome.


Oldfart moment

August 9, 2017

Made it over to Dad’s today and had a nice talk. When I asked
him how he was feeling his was reply was he felt his age, and
he’s 92! So we talked about everything from Johnny Popper
tractors, to horses, to family.

I mentioned that the livestock barns were empty when we walked
through and he had an answer. He said it was empty because city
folk wouldn’t walk through because they didn’t have the sense to
walk around the cow patties or the time to complain to the fair
manager when they got some on their shoes.

If you think you’re having a bad day the picture below should
help you to a better mood. At a Concourse De Elegance, the owner
of this 1936 Delaheye drove his car on the viewing stand to get
an award, then it got crushed.

After I returned home I found out Country Classic Cars had a
big fire overnight. The 5-alarm fire broke out just after sunset
and nobody was hurt in the fire. This classic car dealership is
right off Route 66 in Staunton, Illinois. We hope they rebuild.

Oh yeah, the oldfart moment. As Dad and I were talking I heard
a phone ringing but Dad didn’t pick up the phone. So I asked him
if he was going to answer it. He said it wasn’t his phone and it
was then I remembered my cell phone sounded just like a home
phone. By the time I got the phone out of my pocket the caller
hung up.

Enjoy our wednesday and don’t worry about me. I now know what
the ringing noise is now.
Comments are always welcome.


Thoughts and tractors

August 6, 2017

Yesterday the wife wanted to go to the county fair and I nixed
her idea which didn’t make mama happy. Then shortly after our
youngest son called. He mentioned 2 firefighters had been killed
this week fighting the wild fires. Timber isn’t that important
but surrounding homes and families are. Our condolences.

So we went to fair after one of my unhealthy breakfasts. I see
nothing wrong with eggs cooked sunny side up in bacon fat yet
it drives some people crazy. If what these people say is true,
added to my years of cigarette smoking, I should have died 17
years before I was born!

At the fair we saw some good looking livestock, some wild
animals, rides, and of course tractors. It wasn’t a big show
but we’ll share some pictures. And some of the tractors aren’t
even green.

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Mamabear can show the pictures to her grandson and make his
day. These pictures were taken by the wife as my little Sony
quit working after two pictures. Although the display showed
a full battery I didn’t charge it.

Enjoy our Sunday.
Comments are always welcome.


Looking back

July 23, 2017

Since it’s Sunday lets take a stroll down memory lane to a time
when things were simpler and morals were etched in stone. When
we were just wee little ones the family would always take a
Sunday drive after church.

The old 48′ Chevy would kick up dust on the gravel roads while
the folks talked with myself sitting on my mother’s lap. Oh my
God! Today they would be in prison. No seat belts, to child’s
seat, no air conditioning. That’s child abuse.

If you remember these rides you remember being dressed in your
Sunday finest, even as a toddler. These outfits even included a
hat and in the summer heat with all the dust could become quite
uncomfortable. So I’m told I’d take mine off and somehow manage
to toss it out the window.

Dad would stop the car, back up, and get out to find the hat
as Mom would scold me for losing the hat. After a few episodes
of this the hat was removed when I got in the car so I couldn’t
throw it out.

Then one Sunday I was put in a hammock that stretched from
window to window over the back seat and gently swayed as Dad
navigated the bumpy gravel roads. I would not recommend trying
that today. When the ride was over our treat was home made ice
cream after washing our face and hands at the well pump. And
everyone would drink out of the same tin cup that hung on the
pump!

Back at the farmhouse we’d change back into our work clothes
and gather in the parlor. Entertainment was an upright piano
if anyone there at the time knew how to play. If not it was
stories or Canasta until supper. And back then we ate supper as
a family. A good excuse was needed to miss supper and an even
better one to skip church.

After supper someone had to do the dishes and since the old
farmhouse didn’t have running water that meant another trip to
the well. Some water was then heated on the stove and poured
into a galvanized tub. When the last dish was dried the chore
wasn’t finished until to pan full of dirty soapy water was taken
outside, emptied, and rinsed off at the well and brought back
in.

There was no internet and the crank telephone was a party line.
No air conditioning meant looking for shade until things cooled
off after sunset. It was a different time that some would say
was a hard life. But we survived. And when we reflect upon these
times it brings a smile to our face.

Enjoy our Sunday as tomorrow some go back to work.
Comments are always welcome.


Chatting with antique farmer

July 12, 2017

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Talking to Dad yesterday I think we both had a great time. He
was more talkative than usual and we covered a lot of ground.
Everything from one Iowa farmer losing his crop to weather
earlier this week due to storms, to how it’s getting crazy
trying to remember all the different sexes we now have.

We talked of two-cylinder John Deere tractors, some tree limbs
that were hanging in his back yard, and the summer of 1936. In
Iowa that year the temperature stayed above 102 degrees from
the 3rd of July to the 17th, when it dropped to 99 and then
went back up again.

The heat came after a drought that was the dust bowl and on
the heels of record cold and snowfall over the winter. Some
were predicting the end of the world while others strived to
survive. In those days before air-conditioning became popular,
many slept on their porches as the house was just too hot.

Grandpa always said tractors were a fad and horses couldn’t be
worked in the heat because they don’t sweat and would have
dropped over dead. So any work that involved the horses was
done at night. When Grandpa left the farm for the last time in
the early 1970s he still told anyone who would listen that the
tractor was a fad that wouldn’t stand the test of time.

Sometimes I see him standing there with his bib overalls,
matching hat, and brown work boots pulling a hanky out of a
pocket and blowing his nose before starting to talk of the
many fine points of a good work horse.

When it was time to go I noticed Dad was smiling and after I
walked to the car I caught sight of some smiling idiot in the
rear view mirror. It was a great day.

Enjoy our Wednesday.
Comments are always welcome.


We’re back

June 24, 2017

We survived our weekend mini-vacation and have no lumps,
bumps, or bruises to prove it. Things started out great until
we saw the smoke signals at the crest of an upcoming hill and
noticed the traffic had ground to halt.

After sitting in park for about a half hour traffic started to
move again and we came upon the reason for the delay. A two
vehicle fatal accident complete with one car burnt to the
ground and still looking hot as we passed.

Once things got moving again we marveled at the beauty of our
Iowa countryside. The crops were looking good and sky was blue
with enough clouds to cast interesting shadows on the landscape.

Of course when we arrived in the river city we’d decided to
spend the night at the traffic was bumper to bumper. Yet we
kept our good mood as we were escaping the daily grind, if only
for a short time. I even had some greens with my supper. Well,
if lettuce and pickles on a cheeseburger count.

The ceiling in room didn’t leak, everything else worked, and
the sky put on a spectacular show as the sun dipped behind the
trees. Thanks to the wife for taking the pictures while I was
driving.

We arrived back home grinning, refreshed, and ready to tackle
whatever life hits us with until the next getaway. Enjoy our
Saturday, we will have a snicker later that a friend shared.
Comments are always welcome.


Strange things

June 22, 2017

I went and had my chest x-ray today in an older hospital that
had just been remodeled. At one time I could find anything in
that hospital with my eyes closed. Now they added curved walls,
meandering halls, and confusing signage. I guess the updates
were needed but still saw nothing wrong with old straight
walls.

I read in the newspaper that people were surprised at the
small turn out in the 3rd Ward election to narrow the field
from 6 candidates to 2. Perhaps it had something to do with
the fact that the issue was more important to the politicians
than the voters.

And last night while I was cruising the information highway
something strange happened. There I was rowing through the
gears and speed shifting the tabs when an IM noticed popped
up. That wasn’t unusual but what made it a Twilight Zone moment
for me was the message came from my cousin who recently died.
All the message said was “Thank you”.

Then we all know common sense has died as surely as we know
Elvis has left the building. The way things look today Mr.
Sense has company. Common courtesy is no longer with us if we
disagree and debate has turned into hate filled rhetoric aimed
toward those of us who haven’t drank the Kool-Aid. The sad
thing is that those who argue the loudest and protest the most
are the problem and don’t have the ability to figure it out.

Political parties have become opposing sides in a war against
imagined rights and innocent slights. Our lawmakers are once
again the butt of jokes while they imagine they actually doing
something that would help the average citizen. I think a lot of
people need a nap.

Enjoy our Thursday as the weekend is almost knocking on the
door. Now I need to get some mowing done or declare our yard
a tropical rain forrest.
Comments are always welcome.