Saturday, October 6, 2007

The farm

When I was a little kid we lived in a very small town in Iowa. Durant, Iowa to be exact, population at the time: 1,500. Our high school had around 300 kids in it, 75 of whom were in the marching band. It was a town of mostly German immigrants and their descendants. My grandparents, having immigrated to the United States in the 1920s, were on their way to settle on the west coast and never made it past Iowa, if I remember the story correctly.

This small town is surrounded by farms and in school there was a mixture of farm kids and town kids. We lived in the middle of both worlds; living on a farm for awhile and eventually moving into town. Riding the school bus when we lived on the farm was an adventure...we would see the dust it kicked up long before we ever actually spotted the bus. My parents didn't actually own the farm, we just rented the house from the owner, who was retired, while his son farmed the land. Our walk to the end of the driveway was short and on cold, snowy days we could stand in the kitchen or living room and look out the window to watch for the bus. When we saw it down the road at the bottom of the hill leading to our house, we would grab our books and run out to catch it. We had it easy, though. Often times the farm houses were built down a "lane" off the main road and those kids had to walk/run what seemed like up to a quarter mile sometimes, in order to get to the end of their driveway to catch the bus. Maybe it wasn't as far as it seemed at the time, because we were little kids back then, but it sure seemed like some of those lanes were pretty long; especially in those cold, Iowa winters. Sometimes the moms would drive the kids to the end of their lanes and sit in their cars so the kids could stay warm until the school bus came. If you missed the bus and your mom or dad wasn't too busy, they could usually drive you down the next road and catch the bus at a neighboring farm.

Bill, our bus driver, was a little crazy and often flew by our house without slowing down, only to slam on his brakes as he would see us running out to the road. One of our neighbors had a St. Bernard that was deaf and partially blind. The dumb dog would run alongside the bus, but wasn't able to judge distance very well and was hit by the bus on more than one occasion. He would bounce off the side of the bus and take off running, only to be back the next day. It was a good, simple life for a kid. We only lived on that farm for a year, maybe two, but I loved it.

Psalm 65:9 (NIV)

You care for the land and water it;
you enrich it abundantly.
The streams of God are filled with water
to provide the people with grain,
for so you have ordained it.


Mom said...

Be thankful you didn't have to walk 5 miles in the snow, going uphill both ways!!:) LOL

Charis said...

People should read this.