11 April 2010
I have peppered this blog with pictures of Spanish colonial ruins in Mexico with which I obviously have a fascination. It therefore seems only fair to put up some pictures of ruins in the Midwestern United States of America.
I take my exercise here by walking “around the block,” meaning walking the country roads that track the Section lines of the Section in which the farm is located. This takes me by farmsteads that are now abandoned, farmsteads on what used to be family farms in my youth.
I spent a lot of time on this farm, sleeping over with the children in that farm house on occasion.
Later, when I was bigger and stronger, I left a lot of sweat in the hay mow of the barn that used to stand on this foundation mowing away hay bales as they were transported up into the mow through a large door up under the eaves on the end of the barn by the usual arrangement of a large hay fork operated with a block and pulley system mounted inside the barn.
This farmstead does not look too bad, but it was a beautiful layout in its day, the home of my best friend in the country. It housed what was called a Grade A milking operation with a large herd of Holstein cattle. Because of the strict inspection of Grade A milking operations, it was maintained in immaculate condition. The least bit of weathering of the buildings resulted in a new paint job. Immediately. Everything was clean. No other way to describe it. Clean.
In the foreground there used to be a smaller second house where the hired man, Tommy Scofield, and his wife lived. Tommy was an old Scotsman with a fantastic sense of humor in stark contrast to the grim, stern personality of the owner,his boss and my friend's father, who was eye-ball deep in hell fire and damnation religion.
Off in the distance there is Blodgett Cemetery where some of the people who inhabited these nearby farmsteads are now buried along with some of my relatives on my father's side. I used to sled on the hill adjoining this cemetery.
Blodgett Cemetery has been around for a long time.
None of this is intended to imply any sentimentality on my part at all. These locations are interesting curiosities to me. All things change. The only thing that endures is change.