Sunday, April 12, 2009

BETTER LATE THAN NEVER! THANKS FOR YOUR PATIENCE...

Do you remember this poem?

There was a little girl,
Who had a little curl,
Right in the middle of her forehead.
When she was good,
She was very, very good,
But when she was bad she was HORRID!

In spite of the weather conditions, (that I liken to the poem above) we are really trying to enjoy Arkansas. When the forecast is sunny and fair, it is a beautiful part of our country. The miles we have driven on the back roads are full of surprises like the exotic animals we found on a local farm, as you will see below. We are curious about the large number of “ponds” … it seems every farm has at least one and some are huge. We are not sure if they are natural springs (which would make them lakes I guess) or if they are man made but, whichever, these land-locked houses have their own waterfront view—how nice is that? Although we have misgivings about mosquito breeding when the warmer days arrive.

It seems to me

People who live in this part of the United States are very brave souls. They go about their daily lives as if nothing, (not even the stormy weather) will affect their world. As if, the next weather forecast might not contain the ominous, “scattered thunder and lightning, some storms may be severe.” warning. As if, they won’t be awake into the wee hours of the morning waiting for the thunderous hail to stop pounding their RVs and cars sitting outside and the storm to pass. As if, a tornado won’t touch down and cut a mile long-quarter mile wide swath of death and destruction through their neighborhood. We have been through one of those storms already this week and another one is due in today. Yes, it seems to me, these fulltime residents are some of the bravest Americans!

The newer palatial homes in the country are definitely on the upper end of the financial ladder with many acres of lush green fields and large herds of happy cattle blissfully grazing away. Apparently, raising beef has been lucrative in the past but we can’t help but wonder how things are going in this recessive environment. The long, paved driveways behind intricate iron gates complete the picture. Yes, there are some awful, junky looking places, complete with rusty old cars and garbage scattered around a falling down mobile home or trailer, but they are few and far between.

One thing we have noticed is a lot of empty houses. A bit overgrown but obviously middle class homes that look as if the owners just walked away. Few “for sale” or “for rent” signs are obvious and that is a mystery. We have also noted that for the most part, the remaining residents have a mowing obsession. They mow everywhere including the sides of the road, which are carpeted with wild flowers. A feast for the eye as you travel the red, blue and even gray (called “local” on the map) roads, which are all (for the most part) in good condition. Lovely drives on clear sunlit afternoons, which since we’ve been here have been too few and far between and apparently, the bad weather is not going away any time soon. I’ve just looked up the chances of dying in a tornado, which is 1 in 60,000, and the likelihood of dying from a lightning strike are 1 in 83,930. Pretty good odds considering dying from heart disease is 1 in 438 or cancer, which is 1 in 600. It may be “famous last words” but we refuse to let the FEAR of bad weather stop our travels. In the tourist brochures, I have read that one of the reasons people choose Arkansas for their home is the beautiful weather. Hmmmmm, we’re ready! We will just keep moving and hope to stay safe.
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Sunday evening:
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At last, we are back on line. This storm was not nearly as bad as the last one. I think when they happen during the day, rather than during the night it takes away some of the trauma. The rain was so heavy and the cloud cover so thick, it knocked out our TV satellite and there was some lightning so we lowered the satellite Internet dish and just put it back up a half hour or so ago. I apologize for the lack of dialogue with the pictures. I apologize but I'm exhausted and not feeling very creative. Hopefully, next week will be better!
Until next time,

8 comments:

  1. I live in the KC area now, but grew up in Missouri Ozarks. When you live anywhere in this part of the country (MO, KS, AR, NE, OK, etc.) you really do just go about as if the weather has little or no impact.

    Or, if you're like my husband and me, you love the stormy weather and long for the day you might actually see a tornado up close and person. There are many more of us (crazy storm lovers) than you might think.

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  2. I know people there don't get too excited about the weather but I DO. Scares me when I hear the tornadoes are close to Sharons. I am glad to live in a part of the country that the worst is snow. Have a blessed week.

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  3. You really do just live with the storms, especially in March and April. Every place has some sort of natural disaster I guess. I got over hovering in the closet about 40 years ago :) The ponds are usually from a spring, but they call them ponds. The big one behind our home is from a big natural spring.. personally I think it looks like a lake!

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  4. We toured parts of Arkansas last year, had no storms whatever (last of May, early June). We didn't get storms until we got to Missouri. Had to change plans and detour away from the flooded Missouri River. All part of the adventure!

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  5. Joy, glad that you are safe and as always I enjoy your descriptions of the places you visit. Even up here in the mountains we have to expect the unexpected---snow in April and even an earthquake a few years ago. Now that was a shocker! Stay safe and enjoy! :)+

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  6. Sorry that the weather hasn't been great. You just never know around here. Easter was really bad. Yes, we do go about most of the time as if nothing is going to happen. Of course I'd be a little more worried if I was in an RV rather than a nice brick house! I grew up in Arkansas though so I'm used to it.

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  7. Hi. We are "on your map" (#3964)and just checked out your journal. Great job on that. We are native to Arkansas and have been RV fulltimers going on four years. We are back visiting family before heading to Alaska in a few weeks. Perhaps we will cross paths somewhere down the road. Travel safe!

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  8. Anonymous12:10 AM

    Hey! You had me scrolling straight to the pictures when you mentioned all the huge estates but then you didn't have any pictures. Are you going to add some in later? Some people love the historical sites but you know me, I love the houses!

    I hope you had a good Easter. I love you!

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