Sunday, June 15, 2008

Home Sick

I grew up in a small mountain ranching community boasting a population of a whopping 130 people. Even though we did not have our own "ranch" we had some livestock and my mom's family are all ranchers as far back as I know. I even have two uncle's (one, and two) who are very notable people world wide for their horse knowledge, that they got by being sons of a rancher. Geesh, I am off topic already and have not even begun. Now that I have bragged about my uncles let me get on with my point.

When I was growing up in this huge town of 130 people, I wanted nothing more than to leave. I hated wearing my sisters hand me down Wranglers and polo shirts (she is a tom boy). I wanted name brands like Guess, Gucci and definitely not in hand me down form ( I am ALL girly girl). I wanted a mani-pedi, dad wanted me to chop fire wood. I wanted to go shopping on Saturday, dad wanted me to help the neighbors brand cattle. I wanted something more exciting than crickets and frogs to listen to in the evening hours. I wanted my dates to not consist of going across the county line bridge for dancing by the creek because we could raise heck and our county sheriff could not bust us and the next county's sheriff was two hours away. I hated being considered a "hick". I hated that we could never leave for vacation because we had animals that we needed to feed and milk. I hated having to be bussed more than an hour to get to high school in the city. The weekend I graduated high school I took a job in the city and moved. I forgot all about my country roots, or so I thought. I was a city girl now!

Well two and a half years after I moved to the city I met JC. He was a flat lander. A farmer. He lived on the outskirts of the city but farmed about twenty minutes out. I decided very early on I was never going to marry a rancher and live in the mountains, but I had never said I would never marry a farmer. So we married. Mountain ranching girl turned city girl marries flat land alfalfa farmer. Ever heard the expression you can take the girl out of the country but you can't take the country out of the girl? That is so totally true. About the time I had Vootz I wanted to move back to the mountains. Try as I might I could not get JC to move. Something about not being able to grow crops on mountain sides, covered in oak trees. Go figure. We are technically living a "country" life style with the farming and all but ranching and farming really are very different, so are the flat lands and the mountains.

I have been reading over here a lot. (I am so addicted to her) She makes me homesick. I miss seeing the cattle, horses, rodeos, brandings, team roping and cattle drives. I miss the sounds and smells. I miss crisp mornings and laying in bed at night with the window open (because we lived in the middle of nowhere we could do that with out fear of being killed) like I was saying, laying in bed smelling the dew come in and hearing the frogs and crickets sing their lullabies. I miss the creeks and snow days and the smell of autumn. I miss the small town, everyone knows your last sneeze, atmosphere. I miss my horse and the sound of the bit clinking in her mouth, the sound of the saddle, (how to explain that to someone who has never been in a saddle I have no clue.) The softness of her nose. Here I am again trotting off into lala land. Back to my point, because I do have one.

The more I read over here the more I miss it. I have embraced a lot of my country roots again having been married to a farmer. I sport the occasional pair of jeans that are not worthy of the city fashion scene, I sport the John Deere logo frequently (which I would have NEVER done growing up), I work hard next to my husband unafraid to break a freshly manicured nail. I love to go out to the fields under all the stars that you just can't see in the city. I love to hear the sounds and smell the dew, but I really miss the mountains and flat land country is better than city but it is just not the mountains.

So, I guess my point is this, number one, thank you Ree for all the memories of what ranch life is. You detail it so perfectly it is almost like being "home", until a child screams and then I am plopped back into reality. Number two, I am almost hoping we do have to move to a nice, rural, small town, ranching community hopefully in the mountains, because dang if Ree hasn't made my homesickness all that much more present in my mind. (BTW Ree, nothing against the prairie, it is incredibly gorgeous, but I love my mountains.)

My dad took two of my boys "home" with him yesterday. They have talked about nothing else for the last twenty four hours. It has been all about the cows, the horses, the tree and rock climbing, snake hunting *shivers*(glad that was unsuccessful), the creek and just bein' able to run, run, run. They fell asleep fast and hard when they got home, it was NICE! Thanks Daddy, next time can I stow away too?


karen said...

How is your big sis doing? I havent seen her since High School some geez olmost 10 years ago. I remember you guys having to ride the bus all that way. I was real impressed you got up that early to do so.

I guess Im so much the WARM city girl I finally get to go get the WARM part for sure this weekend.

The Farmer's Wife said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
karen said...

ok just read my earlier comment. I guess Im trying to make myself younger than I am. I graduated in 93 so more like I havent seen your sister for 15 years.

I guess my brain is on the move right now.

foolery said...

Great post. I'm a flatlander myself (dairy-raised and back on the same ranch I grew upon), and I know about the feeling of coming home. But I'm not actively involved in agriculture outside of feeding hay and irrigating once in a while, or I might grumble a lot more.


-- Laurie @ Foolery :)

Lynnie said...

Oh man, I guess it's just human to want to grow away from how you grew up, just to end up missing it all the same! You really did a beautiful job describing this feeling. Although we live in a remote area on a farm, I am always drawn to live in the city again. But I know I'd never really be happy there without letting my kids get to play in real dirt!