Monday, June 4, 2018

People one meets along the way

Rules of the road
Yesterday it was glorious in central Montana.
So we decided to hit the road. During this time
of the year everything is GREEN. Hence once
out of town, an endless stretch of rolling green
prairies, pastures, and fields lay before us - as
far as the eye could see. All edged by several
mountain ranges that surround us. For a city
slicker like me it's always a sight to see. And
for any inveterate local, a verdant vision that
will soon literally fade and turn brown. Hence
many seemed to have the same idea. Meaning
that occasionally we met a pickup as we came
around the bend. And... waved of course!
Service center
Our destination was "Eddie's Corner." Located
at one of the few major intersections along the
road. A local institution - for sixty seven years
they've been filling tanks and bellies, wetting
whistles, and helping truckers keep clean with
showers, a laundromat, and barber shop. Soon
we were in our seats and I ordered a ham steak
dinner topped with a canned pineapple ring -
sans a cherry as after all this is the wild west!
Our waitress was a young lady and quite good.
However what was most impressive was her
"schtick." She knew how to serve up the latest
local gossip and dish with the best.
Out and about
The big news was that several folks had sighted
a wolverine out and about. Or then again, some
thought it was a badger. Hmm... or maybe it was
a coyote. Others wondered if it was some genetic
error. Whatever was lurking didn't matter. What
obviously was more important was chatting up
the customers and enjoying their company. And
what could be a more pleasant way to spend a
Sunday afternoon? You see, once you get out of
Lewistown most folks lead isolated lives. Thus
when they finally get to out where other people
are they blossom. Enjoying their time in the sun.
That is until it's time to do their evening chores.
Pot shots
After a lovely meal (which included a trip to
the salad bar and a slice of "dump" cake for
dessert) we hit the road home. On our way
we stopped by our one and only "big box"
store - Shopko. There Frank grabbed a few
plants to fill in some holes in his garden. We
normally shop our two local greenhouses.
But that late on a Sunday they were closed.
At the checkout we realized that the soon to
be ours fox glove perennial was missing it's
tag. So we waited as a young man ran out
to the greenhouse. And as all Montanans are
apt to do, soon were chatting with the clerk.
Roadside attractions
Turns out she was a wealth of horticultural
knowledge. Advising us to make sure that
our pets did not eat the digitalis. From there
she went on to recount the names and risks
of a variety of scary species. Sharing with
us that her dream was to be a botanist. All
too soon, the runner was back with a price.
And we were on our way all the wiser. You
see, the true way out west is to be friendly
to everybody. Which benefits all involved.
Somehow we always learn something new
in the process. Now if only our friends in
Washington could do the same...