24 May 2012

Message From The Roost: Memorial Day Weekend. You Are Invited.

Message From The Roost

Went out to the barn to check on the chickens and make sure they were locked up snugly, as adult and baby boxes use the farm as a highway to get through the woods. Scary place for a chicken, but our system is holding up Freaky the rooster keeps an eye on the hens, keeping them near the house and the barn. The donkeys watch the pasture. Not foolproof, but so far, good enough. I sort of missed the impending holiday until it dawned on me this morning that it was Memorial Day.

The message from the roost was clear enough. Stop pecking and hunting for bugs when the sun lowers, go to a quiet and simple place and be with yourself, honor the transition between work and rest, cluck softly and in a spiritual way. The blog will be up and running all weekend and you are more than welcome to spend some of your holiday with me, Maria, Simon, Lulu, Fanny, Rocky, Frieda and Lenore, and the barn cats and chickens. We will be talking walks, taking photos, drawing sketches, taking hikes, brushing donkeys, napping with dogs. If I can find a parade, I'll go there with my camera. Looking forward to a few days alone with the former girlfriend. See you in the morning.

Posted in Farm Journal, General

Magic Dish

Magic Dish: Birdbath

After the rains today, I saw that my birdbath had become a magic dish of sorts, a mirror that told me a different story each time I looked at it, and every time I moved around it. I'll go back tomorrow in the sun for more stories. This one told of light and darkness and fear and hope, and laughter and change. I loved listening to it.

Posted in Farm Journal, General

General Store: A Heartbroken Community Begins To Heal Itself

Linda and Thom Janidlo

Two years ago, the Bedlam Corners Bedlam Store caught fire just before Christmas, and was severely damaged. It was as if the small town's heart was broken. For many years, this historic building was the center of the town, its commercial and cultural focus, the one place we could all meet and talk to one another. For two years, it has been still, empty, deteriorating.  We have all wondered what is happening with the building, we all wince every time we drive by.

Thom and Linda Janidlo decided to try and jumpstart its return, to heal the town's broken heart. Today I found them working with a dumpster to begin cleaning the store out – there is much pigeon waste and debris. Not easy or pleasant work. Thom understands the idea of service and leadership – he was a marine platoon commander in Vietnam. It still shows. Tomorrow, they are organizing a clean-up at the store, from 9 a.m. through the day. I'll be there to take some photos. I'm putting up an album of the today's clean-up and the wrenching interior of this valuable building on Facebook.

Hardware Department


Posted in Farm Journal, General

Performance Auto Body

Performance Auto Body

It was not easy to get Maria and Monty out to pose for a photo. First time for them. But I am grateful to them. Two weeks ago, I hit a deer after going out to dinner, and this morning Maria and I went to drop off the rental car and pick my car up. I missed my car it is a great car and I love it. Performance Auto Body is working hard on their business, as the mild winter left them with the worst winter in 26 years (I never thought of it, but what could be worse for an auto body shop than a mild winter? Nothing, says Monty). Maria is working hard to get Performance Auto Body into the 21st Century.

They have a facebook page and a blog and Maria also takes photos every day of each car and puts them up on her website so customers can follow their progess. I admire Monty's great work and Maria's energy and creativity. I often have to bludgeon writers and artists into putting up a blog, but Maria and Monty figured out it matters and are putting the word out. They do not need to be bludgeoned into using technology to move forward. They had a tough year, but are coming back with energy, honesty, good work and creativity. Social media is helping them also. I appreciate them and am very thankful for the wonderful work they did on me car. I cannot imagine going anywhere else with a banged-up car. So this closes the deer chapter. Two weeks of some paperwork, reports, records, signatures. The damage to the care was $3,900. Insurance paipaid all but $200 and most of the car rental. Chapter closed.

Posted in Farm Journal, General

Neighbors. Bedlam Corners General Store

Bedlam Corners General Store

There are some people in the world who complain about how things are and used to be, and some people who do not complain but simply try and make things better. I drove by the burned-out general store in Bedlam Corners, which has been standing and deteriorating for a couple of years now while the owners and the town try and figure out what to do with it,  and saw Thom and Linda Janidlo with a dumpster hauling trash out by themselves. "What are you doing?" I asked. Cleaning out the store, they said. They are organizing a general clean-up of the store for 9 a.m. Friday and have asked me to come by and take photos. My pleasure. Anyone who can help is welcome to come  bye and help. Route 30 and Chamberlain Mills Road, at the center of downtown West Hebron. Photo album going up this afternoon on my Facebook Page.

I am not like Thom and Linda – I don't really want to be cleaning up the store. But I am grateful for them. They make people like me possible.

Posted in Farm Journal