John Wetrosky, Columnist
Some puzzles just take longer to solve than others. This was a farm uncle's puzzle it took 30 years to solve. The corn is peeking out of the ground in farm country that hasn't been flooded this spring. The first green spears have gained enough height to be eligible for cultivating. Of course, in this modern day, cultivators are no longer used much due to herbicides. But my generation of farm boys learned to tractor cultivate to eradicate the first weeds and grass that would invade cornfields.
The old farmhouse sat out in the middle of nowhere. Weeds and high grass surrounded the old building that was now devoid of paint and missing most of its windows. The doors were missing and a rusted, long-handled water pump sat just outside the porch door. I was hunting pheasants along the weed-filled creek bottom when I spied the building sitting alone on the small rise. I decided to sashay on up and perhaps kick up a rooster or two along the way.
"Hey! How 'bout those Twins?" That phrase is echoing throughout the cafes and meeting places across Twins-land these days. The subject of the Twins' winning ways is taking over from depressing political talk, family issues and the cost of a cup of coffee. It is "feel good time" in the "Land of Lutefisk and Lefse."
Rainy days get me down. On that little Iowa farm I grew up on, rainy days really got me down. Rain is essential to farm country. It has always been that way. Either too much or too little is not desired. Just the right amount of moisture is sometimes hard to come by. This year, farm country is experiencing more than the desired amount of rain in most areas. Planting has been delayed in many areas and impossible in others.
"Quit trying to pass me and we'll get there faster!" my wife spoke over her sunburned right shoulder. The closest thing to a fishing boat I came to in my teen years was a boat my Uncle Frank owned and had anchored in a sandpit near Hawarden, Iowa. It was a small, wooden row boat that leaked a bit, but not enough to sink it.
It was a great Minnesota fishing opener even if not a walleye entered my boat. This is the week that next to Christmas, Fourth of July and Thanksgiving, another "holiday" exists. This Saturday is the official Minnesota fishing opener, as if any of you might need to be reminded. Those who don't fish could care less, but to anglers across the state and the region, this one of the most exciting outdoor events happening during any year.
Last week as I was thinking about what my column might hold for this week, a school bus full of high school seniors arrived in the parking lot outside my work site. They piled out of the bus like a swarm of bees and headed for our historic railroad depot. I saw a lady with a camera in her hands and figured out that this was a senior photo opportunity. It seemed so long ago that my class of 1965 enjoyed the same feeling as these modern day seniors. Some call it senior-I-tis. The malady strikes all high school seniors about this time of year.
I hope you all had a great Easter weekend. No doubt the kids' bellies are full of high octane chocolate, many rabbits are missing their ears and the hard-boiled colored eggs have their collective shells cracked by this time.
It was a late spring planting season. Snow lay on the ground at the middle of April and planting machinery sat idle around the farmstead. Due to my growing up years on the farm, I tend to watch farm programming on our TV set. To some, viewing these ag-related programs may seem to be a bit boring when compared to the cop shows, comedy shows and reality shows, but I enjoy hearing about the things that are going on in the ag industry.
Mr. Lewis taught American history while sitting on the edge of his desk, legs crossed, staring at the ceiling. The class in front of him, including me, glared boringly at the aged history books that sat on their desk tops with our pages opened to the Civil War. There was not much life in that 1950s classroom. The class needed a bus trip to Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.