Saturday, February 2, 2013

Home Sick

Meaning I returned home and promptly became ill.  Bad cold, hopefully not the flu. Guess my body waited until the major events were over, then collapsed internally.
 So let me catch you up on the adventure.  I joined my brother who was recuperating from a hip replacement.  He was 4 weeks post-op and bored but otherwise doing well.  I soon caught his case of cabin fever.  For two weeks we did essentially the same thing -- have coffee and breakfast, go out on some made-up errand just to get out of the house, cook dinner, watch football (not my favorite), go to sleep, REPEAT.  It was snowy, then icy and cold in southern Idaho which precluded a lot of activities due to his slight limp and MD orders not to fall and hurt his hip.  We decided to leave the comfort and boredom of home and visit friends -- all to the north, of course!

First stop was in the Paloose of central and northern Idaho.  For years I have been reading Patrice Lewis, blogging and writing for WND from somewhere in the Paloose country.  It is a great expanse of deep soil on rolling terrain, perfect for growing wheat, lentils, garbanzos and other similar crops. Cattle seem to do well but the people are very dependent on the vagaries of the commodity markets. The people and local communities seem more interdependent and more self-sufficient than other US communities I've experienced.  Why buy Oscar Meyer at the grocery 30 mile away when your neighbor makes good pork sausage and might trade you some for a piece of your beef?

Now I get it. It is a challenging life, but very rewarding. We visited friends of my brother's.  They farm, raise cattle and have a Great Pyrenees (2 border collies, an indoor cat, barn cats, a few horses, etc...). 

They live near a small town that seems to be a pleasant community.  Despite growing up there, he spent 20 years away for a career and then moved back about 15 years ago.  Still seems to be seen as a bit of an outsider, but has a deep affection for the place and the people.  Deep roots in the deep soil of the Paloose.

Will close this chapter with a beautiful but snowy Paloose sunset
 and tell you about the next leg of our journey tomorrow!

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