|New Pioneers Columns|
Some of our well-loved columns that appear as "New Pioneers Notes" in The Springfield Sun.
Tom, our black lab dog, exploded from his bed on the front porch after midnight in a frenzy of excited barking. The coyote pack on the hill, responding to some unknown signal, were in full chorus. Wild high pitched yells echoed back and forth under the winter Wolf moon, then stopped as abruptly as it started. Joining in the midnight concert, the bulls in the east pasture began to bellow, then the cows and calves chimed in for a full half hour of conversation before everyone decided it was a false alarm, and settled back down for the night. In the morning , the neighbor called to say some of the cows were out on the lane; a winter's night adventure that kept the farmer busy most of the next day.
Lately, as I traveled the country towns of central Kentucky, I've noticed a gradual shift in the names of the churches along the highways. I'd come to expect the usual litany of saints names on the Catholic churches, and the Protestant churches usually named after the location and the denomination. But I began to see names like New Beginning, Open Arms, Solid Rock, Greater Works, River of Life, Soul's Refuge, names that made me wonder why there is a shift from the older patterns. We southerners love our churches; the changing pattern of names made me wonder what people were searching for and what makes a church bring people back every week.
The two old men sat on their usual bench in the afternoon sun, sharing stories and opinions from years of friendship. “You know, I went to my grandson's house for supper last week. Dangest way of doing things nowadays. When I was young, we ate supper in the kitchen, and went to the outhouse for our business. Now they eat supper outside and the toilet is inside, bigger and fancier than most kitchens. Maybe I'm getting old, but it just seems backwards to me.“
Summer's garden season is winding down, gardens are flooding our county kitchens with buckets of tomatoes, squash, corn, peppers, cucumbers, beans, okra; more food that I can put on the table in one meal, so the refrigerator drawers are stuffed. Counter tops and pantry shelves are packed with shining jars of garden blessings, as colorful as grandmother's crazy quilt, both destined to warm up a long winter night.