Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Life in the Country~~

Life out here surrounded by fields can become a bit insulated - we are sometimes more in tune with the seasons then with "real life" in the neighboring towns. Daily life mirrors to a great degree the Almanac...for instance, I've watched for the Cardinals to reappear in the gardens and suddenly as if on cue, they arrived on the 24th....suddenly the raccoons are much more active in the night hours. Venturing into our small town to visit the Meat Market or the Farmers Market or the feed store can sometimes be a jolting re-emergence into what's occurring close to us but not yet affecting us in any measurable way.

We've developed what may be a growing friendship with the owners of the meat market - discussions held while our orders are being filled have led to an awareness of the many things we have in common, not the least of which is a shared wedding anniversary date (and a tendency to show up at the same place and the same time for a celebratory lunch when that anniversary rolls around~~). We've been concerned for their small business since the price of gas first shot up to over $4.00 which resulted in the area restaurants suddenly experiencing a loss of their regular customers (their bread and butter so to speak) and then their ordering less meat from our friends. Our friends haven't said too much, but we noticed when they stopped accepting checks because of the number of bad checks they began to have to deal with; we noticed that too many times, we were the only customers in the shop where before there was an almost constant stream. Today's visit was just a bit different.

Although once again, we were the only customers in the shop, we were there very early in the business day for that store so at first we didn't think too much about it, but it seemed that today, our friend needed to unload some of the burden he carried. We learned that restaurants are bouncing checks or going out of business...and there appears there is a fear that our little meat market may not survive the year.

Things have calmed down for us a bit financially - Dave survived two rounds of layoffs at his job and our daughter - a casualty of the declining restaurant business two years ago and now having to work two jobs to survive, has gotten on her feet well enough to move back out. Dallas' student loan situation was solved (for the present term - we'll deal again with it for next fall). We've breathed a bit deeper and a bit more calmly and fallen back into the gentle rhythm of our life....

It's still bad out there though for way too many of the "main street" folks. Let's hope that the focus of the present administration is more on the jobs that main street needs then on jamming through a bill that the majority of Americans, regardless of political party, just don't want passed.

Friday January 22 2010 - 58% oppose the present bills before Congress
55% in favor of suspending the current bill and working with Republicans on a new bill.
for a look at all of the January polls.

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