I wanted everyone to know that I have been trying to keep up with their blogs. I've read them but haven't commented much because the only time that I DO find time to read them, is in the car while Hubby is driving. I've been reading them on my Iphone. Problem is, I can't comment. I guess there's no App for that. lol. Don't think that I forgot about you all. I haven't.
I MADE myself sit down for a bit. (Okay, it wasn't really that hard. I didn't have to MAKE myself sit down. But that does make me sound like I'm really working hard doesn't it? hehehe) I'm setting outside in front of my house, over looking our pond. I'm sitting on a lawn chair and I'm drinking sweet tea. Doesn't get much better than this. Something that Phelan wrote about on her blog today got me thinking about the differences in living here in the Appalachian foothills and living where I use to live.
I use to live in the farming lands of north central Ohio. It was FLAT! Our small 2.3 acres of land sat on the only elevated spot around. And when I say elevated, I mean it might have been 5 feet taller than the surrounding fields. Since it was the "tallest" place around, it got hit by lightning 8 times in the 18 years that we lived there. So coming down here to the "hills" was a bit of an adjustment for me, but,all in all, I like it soooo much better.
Up north we would have a tornado warning at least every month, down here, hardly ever. Although we did have an outbreak of some pretty bad ones a couple years ago. It's funny, when there is a tornado warning people, down here, FREAK OUT!!! I think it's funny. When I first came down here I worked as a data entry person. One day the Nation Weather Service issued a tornado warning. The girls that I worked with were crying and getting under their desks. Some were on their phones crying to their families. I was kind of laughing on the inside and was standing out in the middle of the street looking to see if there actually was one coming. More times than not, there isn't. When it was over, the girls were so emotionally tore up, some went home. Me? Well, I didn't see what the big deal was about. But, I did enjoy the break from the work. hehehehe
Down here there isn't as much wind. The hills block the constant winds. Now, I live on top of a ridge so we do get our share of the breezes, but NOTHING like what it was up there. Another difference is we don't have the mosquitoes here like they do up North. There is no run off for the water when it rains so, it can get like a swamp up there sometimes. The mosquitoes up there didn't have wings, they had propellers. They were HUGE!!!!! Down here we have little anorexic mosquitoes. They might buzz you now and again but, just shoo them off with a wave of your hand and they are gone. Big plus!!!!
There are a few things tho that are not so nice down here. There are snakes, poisonous snakes. There are copper heads and rattlers. We even have this really cool snake that puffs up like a cobra. You know, now that I think about it, I don't know if that one's poisonous or not. Hmmmm. We also have a lot of black snakes. These are the good snakes that eat mice and rats. They also can get into a chicken house and take your eggs. They aren't poisonous, so we don't mind those around.
Ticks are a big issue down here also, but we just keep chickens running around and we don't have problems. But, if you go out in the woods, just make sure you take a good shower and check yourself for ticks. (or have your husband do it. snicker. )
People are different down here too. Now, before you go and say that you have people like this around where you live, let me assure you that you don't. I've lived in different places, Appalachian people are a breed of their own. I can't really explain it, you just have to experience it. When I first moved down here I called this "La La Land." People down here live to have fun. Work is not that important to them. In fact, sometimes it's hard to find people that WILL work. They say this is a depressed area for jobs and that most people are on welfare here. Yes, there is an extraordinary amount of people who are getting assistance here. But, why not? They can get paid for nothing except being poor and they can still have their fun too. You have to realize, fun down here consists of going four wheeling, fishing, and hunting. Some drink and party. A lot do drugs. But as long as they can have their "fun" they are okay. People get by with very little around here. But they are okay with that too. There isn't much drive. If they get their electric turned off, that's fine in the fall and in spring. They don't need it. As long as they can have their fun. Then around the time the weather starts getting uncomfortable, they may find something to scrap to make a little bit of money so that they can have it turned back on. Folks, you think I'm making this up! I've got family members who Wal-marted away $10,000 in cash but didn't have a house to live in! They were fine with that. They lived with friends or relatives until they ware out their welcome. Then they move on to someone else.
Pan handlers are another big problem. They are on the street corners here more than hookers. hehehe. My husband worked at a factory where there was a guy whi use to stand on the corner and hold a sign that said "Will work for food." The factory owner felt sorry for him and offered him a job at the factory making very good money for around this area. The man turned him down saying that he could make more money standing on the corner. The factory owner told him to get off of his corner and called the cops. The man just moved down a street. It's bad folks
Now,(take a breath) not everyone is like that. There are a few who are hard workers, very hard workers. Some they can stretch a dime into a dollar. Some people, and they are few and far between, will work from sun up to sun down. These people will make something of themselves around here. Anyone who is a hard worker around here will never be without a job. My nephew is an example of that. He came from a family where he was abused and his mom was hooked on drugs. He scraped and clawed his way through school on his own. He started working odd jobs for people. He is now working a job were he is almost making 6 figures. We are so proud of him. See, hard work pays off.
There are soooooo many differences in the people here that it would make this an even longer post, so I'll write about some more of the differences later. Thanks for the inspiration Phelan!!!
So until next time,
Small Farm Girl, Appalachian American.