Thursday, March 27, 2014

Windy Day... and a Remarkable Woman

People who live around here -- and by "around here", I mean on or near Route 66 between Tulsa and Afton, -- might balk at me calling this the middle of nowhere.  But to me, the city kid, it's about as far from what I previously called civilization as I can get.  The bottom line, however, is that I LOVE it!  I never knew how fulfilled I could be by relative nothingness.  I love the brown of the fields in the winter.  I especially love the new green carpets of right now.  I love the wonder of how a little rain can alter the color of a field overnight.  I love the "up" cows and the "down" cows, although I haven't figured out what it all means.  Does the weather dictate whether the cows are up or down?  Doesn't seem so.  I love the horses and always wish I was riding one.

I love the chickens in the road.  If there had been a single chicken in a road near the NYC suburb where I used to live, it would have made the front page of the local paper for sure.  Here, it's just "Look out, chickens!".   I love the occasional farmhouse, always wondering what's happening inside.  I usually imagine bacon and fried eggs being cooked.  I can almost smell it.

And on days like this, traveling to Afton alone, I even love the wind which is affording me quite the steering challenge.  It roars across the road and across the plains sideways daring my steering wheel to stay in the middle of the ramrod straight road.  It's dark today too, low gray washboard clouds awaiting much needed rain.  I doubt Afton Station will have many visitors today, but I don't mind easing into the madness.  I'm quite good at being alone as long as I have books, crossword puzzles, and hope.  The start of each season has a day like this.

I was correct.  The day was very slow, with only three visitors altogether.  One, however, was worth the entire day, the windy drive, the cold showroom, and the gas money.

Miriam "Berger" Laisure, from Churubusco, Indiana came with her friend Ver-Linda from Grove, OK, whom she is visiting for a few days.  Miriam, who prefers to be called Berger, is 86 years old and still drives her 30-something foot motor home, pulling her car, all over the country.  But get this -- she is a 65 year member of the Motor Maids, a motorcycle group.  She rides a trike, and it's a beauty.  (She showed me a picture, as well as a picture of her '41 Ford, a gorgeous cherry red.)  This is a woman to admire!!    She's visiting her friend here in OK this week and Ver-Linda knew she would want to see our cars.  I'm so glad she had the opportunity, and that I had the good fortune to meet her.

That's a picture of Berger from the old days, on her bike of course!   I had such fun visiting with these two lovely ladies!

Our only other visitor today was a drop-in from town.  I left a little early because I had a call from Crazy Legs Walker telling me he heard of tornado warnings.  However, the ride home was fine, other than the strongest wind gusts I've ever negotiated.  Wow, my hands are tired from gripping the steering wheel.  By the time I got to Tulsa, though, the sun came out, the clouds were less threatening, and all was well.


Mike A said...

Aroma Road Department: When I was driving to college classes years ago, the two-lane blacktop between Salina and Tahlequah, there was a wee valley just south of Peggs. Off to the right, near the bottom, every morning at 7:30 when I passed, smoke would filter out of a small shack and my trusty Volvo would fill with the scent of bacon cooking. I always imagined a lone hermit who lived in the shack, who cooked bacon that he previously seasoned and smoked. And still, when I drive Highway 82 that way, I can detect that lingering aroma, and regret that I never stopped.

Laurel said...

Isn't it interesting and rather charming that an aroma can stay with a person for such a long time. I know exactly what you're saying, and now I want to drive that road myself and see if the aroma lingers...