This October's bright blue weather exceeds any said month I can recall and that thinking is backed by many a resident, even older than I. Saw Alice still picking tomatoes on the 25th; to date no killing frost, and we are grateful for another ample harvest.
A colored boy was working in the garden when the Parson happened along. 'Nice garden you and the Lord have.' 'Yes Suh, but you all should see'd it last yeah when he had it alone.'
Managed to persuade a reliable man to 'jerk our jerseys' to permit us to take in the Mt. Pleasant and Mable-Hesper shows. Winding our way thru the hills of southwestern Wisconsin, GEORGE CHRISTIAN pipes up from the back seat, 'These people must be gonna move'. I says, 'What makes you say that?' 'Well, they got the land all rolled up'. In a short distance he added 'If thses roads were any crookeder Alice would need two steering wheels'. In less than 12 hours from the time we left home we were setting up George's tent. We found pretty much the same nabers as in previous years. There were D U R W A R D STEINMETZs from La-Farge, DALE McCLAINs from Lock-ridge, Ia., the ART HUYSERs from Sully, and the HUDACHEKS from West Liberty, BUD WAGNER'S 'housekeeping bus' normally parked under that big elm tree next to the railroad tracks was not there, neither was the elm tree. Observing the stump; it had been a shaky place to park at any time. Glancing to the south, in the midst of numerous trailers and tents was Bud's 'Wagon' and still adjancent to it was ED VOGAL's green tarp' from Buhl, Idaho.
Sleeping in basements too is a common thing during Old Threshers, and thusly we again shared with the OLIVER RHEAs from Meadville, Pa., the hospitality of the WM. SATER residence, OLIVER RHEA and MORGAN HILL (of Pa.) hit for the grounds at 'crack of dawn' but Mrs. Rhea rode over with us a bit later. All proceeded without incident; the first two days that is. Come Friday morning Mrs. Rhea was having a commotion in the far end of the basement. Alice says, 'You up already?' 'Yes I think I should be going home.' 'How come?' 'Well, I lost my dentures and blamed if I can find them; they been bothering lately and I'd take them out occasionally', then added, I'm in no mood to go over there today.' One can readily realize such a predicament on a pleasure trip. Rather reluctantly she u p p e d the stairs with us and in passing thru the kitchen, there were her dentures in a dish on the sink. Just goes to prove fairies really are.
Speaking of sleeping in basements, BOB McLAREN was telling, over in that house where he stays there must be close to a dozen fellows and lucky the guy that goes to sleep first, if at all. Says he's been staying there several years and the landlady is just like one in the family, except until when it comes to paying up. Bet they'll all be back there again come '64.
Sad indeed was the news that RAY ERNST had gotten hurt loading exhibits two days prior to the reunion. Certainly our prayers are for his recovery.
Was surprised and pleased to see my good friend BILL REW from Mercer, Wis. at the show. Whats more he was already promoted to 'tankie' and certainly a more qualified contender would be hard to find. He's a steam and saw mill man from the 'Gitchee Gumee' country.
Some people may be air minded, others feel better with one foot on the ground, but as for GLEN McNAMAR from Granger, Mo., he feels best with both feet on the platform of the New Giant engine. He was coming through the parade on Saturday with the New Giant when some difficulty ahead forced him to wait up, so this gave me a chance to talk a bit, while he was stoking his pipe. Said Glen, a youngster had asked to ride on the engine through the parade and Glen assured him it would be O.K. The lad then hurried home and came back wearing a clean shirt, but to make the situation more authentic he had smeared some mud on his face. After some patient waiting to get going, the old 'New Giant' started to roll and spray-his shirt with wet coal smoke. That kid took off across the grounds grumbling some protesting words. Glen says, 'that lad will never make an engineer'.
Apparently Mt. Pleasant surpassed any of its previous attendance. The President was seen carrying a walkie-talkie to keep in touch with the head quarters. Its a sure thing the narrow gauge railroad and steam merry-go-round have added appeal to this show. A write up of this event was noted in the September issue of 'Ford Times' magazine.
Two old acquaintance were recalling their boyhood days. Says one 'Wouldn't it be fun to run barefoot again like we once did?' 'Not me' retorted the other, 'I work on a turkey farm.'
We got up to Mabel-Hesper Steam Show on Sunday and stayed over night at JAMES SYLLINGS; our homeward half way mark. Sorta like there used to be back in the logging days, a 'stopping place.' Enjoyed playing 'cat and rat' with Shirley Sylling but just why she called it fun, of course she did win sometimes. The Mabel show has grown, steam threshing and log sawing, gas engine display, tractor pulling contest, helicopter rides, carnival and prizes with a talent show and fireworks finale.
We stopped a few moments on our was h o m e at the new JACKSON LUMBER HARVERTER PLANT on the outskirts of Mondovi. In the neat office of MARGITH JACKSON MEIS are many sawmill pictures and a world map showing locations of LumberHarvester mills. Out in back TOM MEIS was demonstrating their machine that makes wood shavings. Some prospective buyer evidently had come to see it work and sure enough, he was from Missouri.
The next procedure on the 'Johnson place' was to fill silo and here again steam power played a part. Belted our 9 x 10 Case to the Gehl silo filler.
If you are wondering what your wife is gonna have you do next, try sitting down.
Had the opportunity to attend the Beldenville show south of here. Several steamers were belted up and there was a large display of old tractors and gas engines. Here was a Garr- Scott clover huller now owned by ED HUPPERT and it was of a very early vintage and still in a nice condition with some original leather belts. 'And to think' says DAN BOOTH, 'that huller sat in a shed on a farm where I drilled a well and solved pump problems several times and didn't know it, but I still like my old 1869 Case apron thresher better.'
The Hardy Lindblad Case steam rig again this year went into action on some custom threshing. Combines have gained ground, but also lost some.
An Indian Chief stood on a high hill patting his little son on the head, 'Lookie sonny, pretty soon this will be all yours, white man going to the moon.'