How Come Such A Hobby, You Ask?

| July/August 1998

This article is reprinted from the County Star Weekly News Written and sent to us by Herb E. Beckemeyer 1123 County Road 900 E, Champaign, Illinois 61821-9623.

I don't think it would be proper for me to talk with you about my hobby without going back into the past for the reason I have such a hobby. So, let me first talk about the words 'hobby' and 'nostalgia.' I think these two words go together in my circumstances.

The word 'nostalgia' means (as one writer puts it) yearning for former things or places, or a 'homesickness.' In short, it is a memory of the past and, the older we become, the more noticeable it becomes. However, I was born and spent my boyhood in the early part of this century, and I do have many memories, and I hope many of you have a fine list of memories.

It is said: the young live for the future, the middle-aged live for the present, but most older folks live for the past. Their memories become their greatest possessions, and what a wonderful thing it is that the good Lord has blessed us with this ability to retain these memories, and even more so in our lifetime than any other equal time in history. We have seen more changes in our lifetime than any other people's in past history.

There seems to be one common denominator in all this, though the person having overcome the greatest obstacles and hardships seems to have the richest memories. Persons having been, as the saying goes, 'born with a silver spoon in their mouth 'having few hardships I feel, have few memories worthwhile, for they have not had to join in the fight for survival, using some hidden talents, improvising to meet the challenge of the more primitive times and conditions. To some extent, I pity that person who has always had plenty, for to me, he was denied the chance to fully develop his talents and create a fine list of memories.

Many of these memories are relatively simple, especially to an 'ole' farm boy, such as feeding chickens, calves, slopping pigs, walking a few miles to a one-room school house, shucking corn, shocking oats, walking bare-foot behind a plow or down a hot dusty road.


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