Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Down Home Down Time

After two weeks of down time from blogging, I’m slowly getting back up to speed.

I may never get fully back to the old post-a-day pace. I’ve concluded that even bloggers — ESPECIALLY bloggers — need to smell the roses.

In my time away I spent four days in rural North Carolina at and around my sister’s horse farm situated a safe distance from Charlotte.

She has 10 horses, six dogs, five cat, two pigs and a tolerant and supportive (in more ways than one) husband.

My 10,000 daily steps took me down country roads beyond the fence line. Deer, raccoons and a fox crossed my path. Packs of dogs barked at me. I met an elderly neighbor who walks with a 7 iron ever since he was confronted by a rabid fox.

I’m sharing a photo of calves staring me down because their look matched that of four good-ole boys in a booth at a local restaurant where they really do serve fried green tomatoes.

I don’t know what makes a Yankee look like a Yankee, but I must have. There I was, snared in The Stare. It wasn’t hostile, mind, just unblinking and deeply noncommittal.

Wandering the back roads, I came across this an abandoned hulk of machinery with a promising name. I’m not sure what the “new idea” was. Probably a bad translation from the Japanese. To be exact: A bad translation from the Japanese come to rest in a North Carolina barnyard.

I probably stared at the name as long as the ole boys and the calves stared at me.

To bovines and Tar heels, I was probably the perplexing equivalent of a bad translation for a human being.

When it comes to alien, I can’t come close to my sister, a Northern liberal hussy if there ever was one. Her car bears in-your-face bumperstickers, and yet, the locals long ago moved beyond mere “tolerance” of her. Now they drawl in affection for her and her exuberant horse-happy ways.

It was a fun trip, which marked her 60th birthday to boot. I surprised, even shocked, her by showing up unannounced. If there was a gift in all of this, it was hers to me.

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