Tuesday, January 17, 2017


These tree limbs (above header) lined with thick ice were taken several years ago when I was living in Kentucky. Trees surrounding my home were glistening in the aftermath of a serious winter storm that had moved through the area the night before. If one did not have to go out you were fortunate. 

Now years later I am staying for a while in California. No ice or snow where I am staying. Roses and other plants flourish around me in abundance. 

What a contrast in weather between these two places.  Below is a market stand photo outside a fine old California home. Oranges are ripe in their winter orchards. 

However each area has its goodness. It all depends on a person's likes and dislikes. For myself I have been a wanderer since I retired many years ago. Now, in a couple weeks I will be leaving to return to my birth state, Michigan. I think I just might become a permanent settler there. 

Many of you have lived in various places across the country. Where are some of the places you would recommend folks to settle (or visit)?

Tuesday, January 10, 2017


Historic barn original to the old Finley property -- now known as the Finley Nature Reserve. Benton County

Deep within the bowels of old barns are stories from our past. Many of the stories are dormant but many are still active in small pieces of human memory. 

As I often travel through rural landscapes my thoughts are given over to possible events that  could have happened  in and around these rugged barns. Of course my thoughts are not created from reality. Just from possibilities.

But yet, sometimes I would I run into old timers that would tell me a story about certain barns.  

The story I remember the most happened several years ago It was told to me by a woman who lived in a large white farmhouse that had several outbuildings on her farm land. I was lost and needed some directions -- this brought me to stop and knock on her front door.  She was elderly -- answering the door with a look of sadness on her face.

I felt I was being intrusive yet she was very openly talkative. Somehow I got around to mentioning her large barn with a nice silo attached. She then asked me if I knew about the barn.  

I didn't know about the barn and told her so. So she told me the tragic story of her husband and son working in the silo about a year ago when they were overcome by methane gas. She told me they immediately passed out and fell to the bottom of the silo -- killing them both. 

Old metal type barn near Amity Oregon on 99W.

This story she was telling me was grim by any measure. I was speechless and just listened to her sad story. Was  this actually a true story? 

Her story haunted me for days until I decided to find out if the story was true. I asked around the area and and indeed found the story to be true.

Deep in the rural area along route 35 in Lane County

Not all barn stories end well.