Sunday, July 5, 2015

The 4th with Friends

Well, the title isn't quite accurate. It was actually the 3rd, but for us it was our 4th of July celebration cause we just drove on the real 4th. So just play along with me and let it be the 4th with friends. It has a better ring anyway.

We left the house Tuesday last week. With it being a holiday week, things weren't ideal as far as loads. Independence Day wasn't till Saturday, but a lot of stuff was closing on Friday. So we ended up with a long weekend.

There were 2 good things about so much time to get our weekend load to it's destination. First, we have been able to take our time getting over here, and ease back into work, rather than hitting it hard and exhausting ourselves right off.

And as it so happened, the route took us through the part of Nebraska where Malcolm did a lot of his growing up, and right past the home of some friends. So Malcolm gave them a call and since they were going to be home, we planned to stop and visit.

These guys are more than just old family friends. They also are involved in trucking, hauling cattle around the mid-west mostly. So Malcolm stays in touch with them, visiting on the phone frequently, and we occasionally run into them out on the road.

These guys stay really busy. They are either on the road, or bustling around the ranch working. This weekend they were busy hauling in their hay, and working on stuff at home. We arrived just in time to hop in the pickup and go check cows with Boyd.

It was maybe a 30 minutes drive I guess, out away from everything. Out to the quiet where you can hear the wind in the prairie grass, and the meadowlarks, and the Earth. We drove the pickup out to the pasture, and then the guys took the horses out to check the cows...

...while I chose to soak in the peace and quiet. I was offered the chance to go on the ride out, but I was wearing sneakers instead of boots and figured the guys would enjoy the time more like this.

Don't feel sorry for me. The chance to walk out across the pasture, all alone, and just soak it in is awesome!!! I used to do that all the time when we lived in Montana. I haven't had the chance to stand in the midst of the grass and be the only living soul in sight in almost 3 years!!! It was like spreading a soothing balm on the skin.

I walked around a bit, admired some flowers, got exited about finding a prickly pear cactus in bloom...
...admired the explorations and singing of a lark bunting. I've missed those little birds, and he sang me several long choruses of their beautiful song. And I found a good spot to just sit in the grass and let the sun bake my head and feel the Earth. Tennessee is wonderful and beautiful and I have no doubt that God has set us there because we belong there. But there is nothing like being out on the prairie, and I'm pretty sure it will always own part of my soul.

My favorite picture from the day:
These were blooming here and there. I dug around on the internet the day after our visit and I think they are probably "Prickly Poppies."

I did finally get on the horse just as they guys finished riding back in from checking the second group of cows. Sneakers or not, I couldn't pass up the chance to get on a horse, even it was only for a few minutes.

Back at the house, Jarred had got some ribs going on the smoker and the guys fixed us an awesome dinner! It was one of the best meals we've had in a while, including what I cooked at home. Boyd's youngest son, and his girlfriend joined us too, and we all sat around visiting while the ribs cooked.

After dinner, we visited a bit longer, and then it was time to get going. All in all, it was a delightful way to spend the day. You can't beat good company in a pleasant environment, doing things you enjoy doing, and coming home to some great food!

So a big thanks to Boyd and Jarred for a wonderful day! It was a treat! Maybe one of these days they will get down to Tennessee and we can return the favor!


  1. Looks like that's just what you guys needed! Hope the roads are being kind to you. How are the girls?