Sunday, November 05, 2006

A short visit home

It's good to be home.
Seeing the familiar faces of family and friends, and the farm I call home, even for a short visit is always good for the soul.
Driving along dusty gravel roads, snow on the ground on the fields, a lone coyote loped across the road and then paused from a ditch to stare at my passing car. The last of the geese are migrating south, spending little time on these frozen ponds.
Driving past abandoned farmyards on these roads I know like the back of my hand, I thought of neighbors that no longer live here or have passed away.
There's where one of the old war veterans used to live. At Remembrance Day ceremonies, I recall him proudly wearing all his veterans.
Those yards represented past schoolmates, families long gone, the laughter of the kids disappeared.
Our school is now closed, an empty shell of learning.
There are some boarded up former stores ... old cafes ... businesses I loved to visit with my parents.
At an aunt's 75th birthday, the relatives gathered today. Familiar faces but we all joked about how we aged, changed, moved and yet returned for at least one day. The majority of us have strong farm roots or still farm. Most of the discussions were about agriculture: crops left still to be combined, how the hay crop was, how are the livestock.
Familiar topics we all understand.
The day ends. The last of the relatives drift away. Chores beckon, more chores to do tomorrow.
In a few days, I'll travel from Canada back to Oregon.
But for now I still linger, with memories and loved ones, and set my foot on soil I once tilled with my parents and brothers.
It's good to be home.

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