Good morning…long time no see. My Summer has been full, for one thing, I took a sentimental journey back to Nebraska, left out of here very early one morning, in mid June, got on the interstate headed west, crossed over the Mississippi River at V’Burg….I abandoned the interstate, at the first exit, Delta Louisiana, the rest of the trip, nearly 2500 miles, I took the roads less traveled, the back roads…the little Highways and byways. Up the eastside of Louisiana, across the bottom of Arkansas, into Oklahoma where I turned and went north, though Oklahoma, Kansas to Nebraska….through the small towns. I believe the biggest town I drove in was Hayes Kansas…maybe 20,000 people live in Hays.
I was a grand trip, they were cutting wheat in Oklahoma. Much of the hay being bailed was not in big round bales…but square and big, like the old time cotton bales. Cattle grazing…great expanses of pasture…but they seemed to be up next to the fences munching.
I even saw a couple of working windmills the old fashion ones…And I saw acres of the new fangled wind machines….they are not pumping water like the old time mills…but making electricity.
When I left Mississippi our corn was over my head tall… the corn became progressively shorter the further north I traveled …. in Nebraska much of the corn was less then a foot tall.
One purpose for the trip was, I wanted to take pictures, on the off chance, one day, my kids or grand kids just might get curious about where John and I grew up. Their interest to this point …I would rate as minor to nonexistent. They were mildly interested in the house my mother was born and raised in…when I told them it had been moved to Hayes Center, Nebraska and turned into a Bed and breakfast.
The Old Potter House
brought up to date!
I wanted to stay there…but it was booked up….Hays Center has a population of less then 500 people….I just googled it had a population of 240 in 2000...
The second reason I wanted to go was to sharpen up my memories…I lived in Palisade Nebraska until I was 12...then moved to Holdrege. I wondered if my recollections, especially of Palisade were anything close to accurate…I had been back to Palisade such a very few times in the past 50 years.
Palisade coming from the North
Main Street Palisade Nebraska
Palisade, population 460. When we left there in 1957, it had almost 700 people in it’s city limits. But still and all Palisade was much like I remember it….The depot was gone, but the school, library, and the post office were just as they were when I left….. The park was still down the hill from town. And the café on Main Street was still in operation…I was excited….I had lunch there twice…..Menu was pretty much like I remember it too…with the exception of the Mexican items that had been added.
I timed my trip to coincide with Palisade’s Pioneer Days, so sister Linda and I could meet up with our last surviving aunt, my dad’s baby sister, Aunt Ardyth who was coming in from Montrose Colorado, for her class reunion. And our cousins Alice and Iris….Alice came for pioneers days…Iris just happened to be passing through and we all meet up at the fire station for pancakes. …It was a grand reunion…I had not seen any of them in 50 years…..Alice is working on a Ring (My maiden Name) reunion next summer….so I will get to see more kin folks then. And this October Alice and Ardyth are planning to come to Mississippi!
Linda and Alice on right side of picture
I am getting up from here in a few minutes and going to the cemetery, to the graveside service for a young man, 29, Joe McCleary. I did not know Joe, but I know his mother Liz and his aunts Barbara, Merry Ellen and Sheryl, “The Henderson Girls” The Henderson girls are among the most compassionate, thoughtful and kind people I know….and they are hurting. I know, I will not be able to talk to them without crying…so I will not try….