Posted: May 1, 2016 in Hershey's Life

A short story…

I watched a man stick his head and shoulders into a covered garbage can in front of the Spaghetti Works. He reached in and pulled out a paper coffee cup with the plastic sipping lid still on it. You know the type of cup. It was similar to the Scooters or Starbucks cups you see folks drinking from as they walk about the Old Market. Myself, I was heading to meet friends and co-workers for Marie’s retirement celebration at Trinis. I imagined this luncheon would prove to be filling far beyond the stage of bloated discomfort…

The scruffily dressed man shook the cup to see if there was anything left in it. He then took the lid off and drank whatever beverage was left over. Coffee? Tea? I don’t really have any idea what it was.

Our eyes met as he threw the cup and lid back into the trash can. It was an uncomfortable moment for me. I didn’t know what an appropriate protocol was to his glaring stare. I nodded my head at him as we passed and went on my way. He hurriedly walked by me and headed down the street in the opposite direction.

I wanted to turn and see where he was off to but I resisted that urge. He was on his way. I was on mine.

It’s not your normal experience while walking to lunch.

The following story from a friend of mine who lives on a farm in SW Iowa with several cats, a rather large dog, some offspring of her and her husband, a few equine, chickens, a wood burning stove, and most importantly, her imagination. 
This is country life in Iowa at it’s best…
I have been thinking for a week about how to share this story tactfully, but as a few of my friends pointed out – why start now? So, for those of you who have high standards, you probably just want to keep scrolling. And be aware – I know which of you just move a little closer to the screen. 
Our cat Gir recently entered the teenage years, and has shown an “interest” in … everything. Young females, spade females, Our friend, Lucky. Feeling Lucky had more things to worry about than warding off the physical advances of his cousin-brother, we had Gir neutered. 
Not much changed – Gir was still “interested” in every one, and with no love coming back his way. Then he met … Possum. 
Possum recently became a fixture at our farm after an unfortunate misunderstanding of what our poultry eating policy is. Past events have taught me to wait to remove a carcass until you are sure it is a carcass, and not just an angry animal with a head injury, so I left him there for morning. The next day it was confirmed he was not only no longer a threat, but he wasn’t going anywhere on his own or otherwise, as this is winter in Iowa, and he was now frozen solid to the ground. 
While this may be wrong on so, soooo many levels – it worked out great for Gir. He found his new friend Possum, and after several minutes of courting, he had yet to be shot down … (In compliance with the Facebook policy on community standards, I’m leaving out the rest. You’re welcome). 
You can’t help who you love. I think it’s still a one way relationship, but they both seem okay with it, so I’m leaving it alone. I just hope Gir has developed other interests by the next day warm enough for the ground to thaw.


Release the hounds

There’s always that moment when the horses are running towards you when you realize that at any given moment the 800 to 1200 lb. animals could switch directions and squash you like a fly… Oh what a dangerous lifestyle we have.

Image  —  Posted: February 7, 2014 in Hershey's Life


0246 – That’s what the clock said as I opened my eyes. Why on earth would anyone be awakening at this early hour? Then the mind started wondering about various topics… Work. Garden. Electrical in the man-cave. What happened to my little screw driver for tightening the temple on my glasses. You know. World issues.

Still pondering life – 0317 – still awake.

Then I recalled that the DVR had some shows I’ve recorded to watch later. Well now is later. On with the boob tube. All educational of course. Which causes the brain to function harder and be even more awake.

Is that the sun coming up? What’s it doing awake at this hour.

I was strolling through facebook land today when I stumbled upon the following post from a woman I’ve known since she was a wee kiddo… She’s now a Mom. 🙂

“When I was in town today, I saw these really cool tennis racket looking things, that when you put batteries in they became electrified and you have a hand held bug zapper. I was amazed by the ingenuity, and marveled at the glory of such brilliance. And then I had a flashback to Tucker and the electric fence. And Reagan with the can of butter flavored Pam. And Tucker and Reagan with the duct tape, the spray cheese and toothbrushes…I hung my head, and walked away.”

Alas. The restrictions in life due to Mother memories.Image

Awakened by a calendar notification on my phone this morning. I set it for an hour before the meeting but forgot to use military time. 0530 is much different that 1730 to my tele.

I figured that I might as well get up, grab some caffeine, and head out on to the deck to enjoy the early morning beginning of the day. As I stepped out onto the deck the visual impact of what possibly could be the most breath takingly magnificent sunrise I’ve ever witnessed smacked the sleepiness from my eyes. I immediately turned and returned to the house to grab the Nikon D7000 – which already had a wide angle lens attached – in an attempt to record this phenom.

I set my caffeine on the kitchen table, rushed in to the front room and grabbed the camera, and headed outside, almost knocking over a kitchen chair in my haste. The brilliantly colored sky had not progressed too far. I was in luck. This could be the best sunrise photo of my generation.

Then I noticed it. The switch was left on over night after down loading photos of our progress being made of the cement pour under the porch of the new store here at the farm. Photos that I take for “posterity’s benefit.” Nothing more than mundane images of stakes, string, forms and rocks.

It was only a few hours that had passed since preserving those images to the computer. Maybe the battery hadn’t drained completely I hoped. Possibly the camera gods were on my side. I’ve lived a good life recently – certain karma of the positive should be passing my way… There would be HD video and several incredible photos of this prodigious visual that only our Maker could orchestrate in our heavens above.

Nope… dead as a door nail. Where’s my caffeine?

Something Wicked Cometh...

The greenhouse is filling up. The house (specifically the dining room) is losing it’s classification as a “grow house” according to those that pass our farm after dark. I will miss the over abundance of oxygen emitting from the grow room. More importantly Chirp the house cat can return to the dining room. She was banned due to the large quantity of baby plants that did not need her fat feet on them. Chirp’s a happier pussy now.

As the gardens out here at Jayna’s Country Store and Gardens start coming together – The peas are in and bursting through the soil of what was once our dressage riding ring – I become aware of how much more there is to do…

Between assisting Jayna (my wife) and our friend Nancy with the preparation of the garden areas, building the greenhouse and taking down fences for landscaping in the near future, I believe I have discovered that these 59 year old body parts have a limit to what is allowed by mother nature. Oh to be 20-something again.

Image  —  Posted: April 15, 2013 in john III is speaking. Please sit down.