Eastern Oregon, in and around La Grande. is this old mans dream world. When I was younger, much younger, I dreamt of the day that I would be a farmer with a ranch in an area much like this. In fact, I used to get a magazine monthly that was dedicated to farming and farm life. To me it was what Boys Life was to other friends. The patchwork quilt across the rolling hills is something I never tire of gazing upon. And most of the farms and cattle ranches appear to be doing quite well compared to some of the news you hear about the lowly farmer. In my teen and young adult years I had the opportunity to work on a wheat ranch in eastern Washington as I have said before. It was hard work but I enjoyed every minute of the work, family, play and community.
Since the Vietnam war was going on and I was facing the draft, I elected to join the Naval Air Reserve. This move changed my life for ever. While I still kept contact with the folks on the farm I spent my boot camp at Sand Point Naval Air Station in Seattle. During my summer stay at the camp is was discovered that I have "stress failure of the knee cap" and I was ordered to go home. A short time later after a visit with a Navy doctor at the Bremerton Naval Ship Yard, I was Honorable discharged with medical circumstances. I was never active so I received no benefits.
After release from the Navy I continued to go to eastern Washington on weekends, vacations, during harvest time to help Wiley as best I could. I started working for Boeing, didn't like and left. The union I belonged to also represented the auto trades in Seattle so I was able to get a job as a lube tech. I did lube work for a while and then moved to selling auto parts and then to dealerships and management and here I am.
No farm but still looking at them, photographing them and enjoying them. Mia says they all look the same but there are slight differences if you know what to look for. And I never tire of looking at what some farmers will keep in their yards from the past. There are farms over here with equipment on them that go back years and some collector would fall over himself trying to obtain if only they would pry loose of them. They should put some of this stuff on Ebay. I am betting most don't know, much less care about Ebay.
We are next to an obvious major rail track. There is constant movement of trains through the area. A lot of very long trains that bode the question: Does the economy really suck? There is nothing like waking up to the sorrow and loneliness of a train whistle in the early morning darkness.
Have fun today, I need to get the lower cushion off our couch to take with us to Northwood so they can fix the seam and ship it back to our dealer. I'll let you know later how the tour goes. I love being on the road.