Throughout May, there was always a fire burning somewhere in the general area: the huge fire on the GA border that jumped down into Florida, smaller fires in counties around us, a fire in the uncleared area at the commerce center about eight miles away, and at various other location, in various sizes. Late one afternoon, looking off into the distance, we spotted the distinct plume of another brush fire. This one, though, was only about 4-5 miles away, and the wind was blowing in our general direction.
I couldn’t resist. I grabbed the camera, jumped in my car, and went off to find it. Didn’t take much work to do that, since I could already tell where it was.
It was described as a “small but fast-moving brush fire” on the news. This road has houses on it, and when I got there, at one of the last houses on the road, a woman and her kids were sitting on their front step. On their roof was a sprinkler, wetting down the shingles in case the wind picked up embers and tossed them there. The end of the road was closed, but no one was evacuated and the fire was contained very quickly, thankfully – so quickly, in fact, that we never even received any ash falling on the property, as we have with other fires that have burned in the area.
So, we had our Memorial Day bash on the 27th of May. Remarkably, I took not one picture the entire day of any of the food. One of the reasons for that was because it all disappeared so quickly: about 35 pounds of ribs, 8 pounds of shrimp, a dozen and a half each burgers and dogs, cole slaw, two trays of broccoli gratin, potato salad, carrot cake, homemade bread and butter pickles, corn on the cob, baked beans, and on and on. Unlike last year, it didn’t rain. However, also unlike last year, suddenly, out of nowhere, we had flies everywhere. For three weeks, we’d seen not one of the pesky flying bugs. That day, they were everywhere, and a gigantic pain in the ass. Other than that, the sun was out, the sky was clear, the company was pleasant, and everyone had a great time. And, to top it all off, my aunt Julie flew down from Baltimore for an overnighter to be with us for the party. Everyone finally cleared out around 1 AM, we cleaned up the remainder of the party stuff, and hit the sack.
We’ve all seen the movies where someone is putting up a barn and the entire community comes out to help get the structure built. In most of the films I’ve seen, that community is either homesteaders out on the plains of the wide open west or an Amish community. In both cases, the men did all the manly man stuff and the women made lunch and brought them water. It took a day (or two), and in the end, the farmer or homesteader had a nice new barn.
Today is a gloomy, gray day, with rain threatening, and completely unsuitable for working outdoors. Of course, since we are getting into the rainy season, each afternoon has been turning dark and stormy, with rain coming down in amounts anywhere from sprinkles to downpours that result in visibility reduced to halfway up the front of the property.
When the rains came after a couple of months of no rain at all, we were happy. It saves the trouble of watering, and the ground definitely needs it. But there are Issues, as we say. And we’ll get to those. First, we’re going to back up a bit, and wander back into May.
It’s a (very) small town here. Small enough that the actual town in which we live doesn’t have its own post office. The nearest PO is in another pretty small town.