Saturday, September 20, 2008

the ruined raspberry patch

The ruined raspberry patch.

Yes, ruined. I, in about 1998, was walking down the rural state highway to my nephew's house; right by the road, 40 feet from his house, was a patch of raspberries, the most "ethereal", and delicious raspberries that i have ever ever eaten. These berries must have been planted even before the 1850 house was built, he had an old raspberry patch in his garden but the berries did not live up to *these* berries along the road. There were never very many of them, as they had to live with the state road crews cutting them down every year. I had no way to take a cutting of them, either.
Well today I saw the biggest ditcher machine they make dig a 20 foot wide ditch along the road, wiping out every plant right down to three feet or more.

My aunt, next door, told the that "they will come back, they always have"!
NO!
They never ever did, people! Now every year or so, they come by with that machine to redig that ditch even the deeper.

I was subtly and deeply bothered by this, I Mourned the loss of some fruit that might have been the very very best of its kind, never ever to be seen again unless some "heritage" fruit people find another patch somewheres.

Well i have finally come to terms with those raspberries, i thought of this again today: thus the Post.
These berries gave their lives so that Seneca County could Live!

This upstate new york county, the county that I grew up in and lived in, on and off, became on "hard times" after about 1980. Most of the factories and the Hospital and the Army depot closed. the county is long long long, about 60 to 80 miles long and in fact it is one of about two or three counties where there are two country seats. Most of the jobs are at either end of the county or even further and in my 1998 Interlaken hometown, I knew of a couple where they each commuted 60 miles ONE WAY to work, and he drove south 60 miles and she drove North 60 miles.
This is the Point, people: that as the winter brings from 40 to 100 inches of snow and the blizzard winds can blow at 50 MPH for days and even weeks on end, the roads have to be *utterly* passable so that the few residents can get to work! This state road is by the milder temperature lake so that this road is any one's only Hope, if there is a blizzard and the 10 foot deep and 30 foot long snowdrifts, from such storms, have it where the drift is as hard as concrete! And...every commuter has to be on that road at 5:30 to 7:30 AM, for that 20 to 30 mile commute: that road must be Clear! Thus the ditch is there to catch the snowdrift, and where those raspberries were, the wind has nothing but barb wire fences to slow it down, for over a MILE!! Thus the ditch gets that drift, not the road.

People come first, raspberries a dead last!
Like of those pretty 40 foot oak tress, here in Tallahassee, Florida, where I live, where four of them died in Service to restoring the 150 year old church building! That reconstruction job took a year and the hundreds of heavy duty trucks so so compressed the soil around these trees that they all died: In Sacrifice to the church restoration.

a deep deep Truth, here, people: often something really good is lost, when something else that is good is placed on top of it! Life is Compromise, and which *thing* do you let die, in order to have something else live?!

So these berries gave their lives.

But!

Consider maybe if they were preserved, the road not ditched. there are a LOT of things, people, where I see that if you change one thing, you have to change everything around it! Might have to go back to 1880, people, to live like 1880, men work the farms, women cook, clean, and raise the kids. Yes, many many things are so [a new liked phrase, by me] "integrated systems", that if one thing falls apart, it all falls apart, as everything is connected to everything else.

I read the other day that a lot of long-commuting men, when they get up, they throw a pop-tart into the toaster and as it toasts, they grab their coat and briefcase and they grab this tart as they run out of the door and they SMUSH it into their mouths as they run to the car, to get every second advantage they can, on that 20 mile Urban commute! "awful", you say?!
well.....it is that OR not eat! or rather you want that man to not commute at all, stay home?!
Get up earlier? No. Need every bit of sleep. Maybe to have him stop eating only tarts is to have wife stay home and cook a decent breakfast and he come home for lunch and walk to work.
[I met a man in Rochester, New york, once, in the 70s, he worked 50 years in the same room, and lived three blocks away, now he was 70 or so, still lives where he was born, the house he was born in! *could* we all Go back?! would you want to?!

Buy your raspberries from the mega-mart, shipped from central America!
then enjoy what 2010 can bring to you, in the modern entertainmental sense!

freestone