Tour guide for America’s Third World County.
I took some time this a.m. and, persuading Son&Heir to come along, traveled some of the back roads of America’s Third World County. A few high points included going back over a road where I’d cleared out a fallen tree last Friday (was just noodling around, tree was blocking half the road, had me some fun moving it with Archimedes’ help –just checking to see if any local denizens had claimed the firewood), THE prettiest cemetery in the county and the edges of a nature conservation area.
Noodling around in the “piney woods” byways of America’s Third World County is just such a refreshing experience, methought a gig as a tour guide for the county would be an ideal gig. I mean, how many folks–even those who’ve LIVED here all their lives–know about that lil community cemetery out in the middle of nowhere, tucked into a hillside beside a rarely-graded dirt road? Wrought iron fencing with finials all around, always seemingly freshly mowed, well-kept, and with a neat lil gazebo tucked into one corner: just a lil gem.
And there are all sorts of lil gems all throughout the county–bluffs and caves (few of them well-explored–some apparently never explored!), pastures, woods, creeks and rivers, bridges, low-water crossings, high ridged two-tracks, winding hollows, forested cathedrals, gorgeous homes-hovels-dilapidated and abandoned structures: such variety and more. People groups? Amish, Somali, Hmong, Vietnamese, Latino, South Pacific Islanders, Blacks, Caucasians and more. And even within those groups, it seems that geography molds differences. Real Ozark hillbillies? We got ‘em. Salt-of-the-earth farmers and ranchers? We got ‘em. End-of-the-word survivalist compounds? We got ‘em, too. Party gals and guys? Too many. And on and on and on. And unless the property’s posted with warnings, most of the folks are approachable and pretty darned friendly–and their dogs are too.
And you can be pretty safe betting they’re also well-armed. And that’s a good thing, IMO, because well-armed folks in America’s Third World County are almost always at the very least polite and helpful. They may want to know why one is approaching their door, but that’s OK, because if one is polite in return, interested in and appreciative of the area, they’ll almost always be a fount of neat information.
Tour Guide, America’s Third World County. It’d be fun.
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