How many miles was it? Can I get re­im­bursed?

Westside Eagle-Observer - - NEWS AND EVENTS - By Dodie Evans Dodie Evans is the former owner and long-time ed­i­tor of the Gravette News Her­ald. Opin­ions ex­pressed are those of the author.

Maybe you’ll re­mem­ber sev­eral months ago I was seek­ing an an­swer to a ques­tion con­cern­ing the num­ber of miles I’d walked dur­ing al­most 40 years of read­ing the temps and pre­cip­i­ta­tion recorded at the NOAA weather sta­tion in the back­yard. I fig­ured I’d made about 14,000 trips, some 75 feet both ways … and I won­dered how much shoe leather was in­volved. Not re­ally; it was just about the num­ber of miles which were in­volved.

This was writ­ten Tues­day, June 19, af­ter a cou­ple of weeks of hot, dry weather which was in­ter­rupted by a much-needed al­most-inch of rain a week ear­lier. Lawns are mostly green, truck patches are be­gin­ning to show re­sults in spite of a late start, and a pos­i­tive fore­cast (last Tues­day) pre­dicted a 50 per­cent chance of another much-needed rain. That would be a good start for the of­fi­cial first day of sum­mer. Did it hap­pen? Hope it did.

So here is sum­mer, hot as blue blazes, which are the de­scrip­tive words to use be­tween now and the Gen­try Fourth Free­dom Fest, the De­catur Bar­be­cue and the Gravette Day cel­e­bra­tion in early Au­gust. Res­cue is on the way: School be­gins, the county fair (hope­fully this year) will draw big crowds and, yep, foot­ball practice is … you know what I mean. So, in the mean­time, keep the AC fil­ters clean, re­mem­ber to wa­ter those fa­vorite shrubs, fight curl­ing leaves on the tomato vines and don’t be sur­prised if the cukes taste bet­ter be­cause of the hot sum­mer sun.

’Nuff of this, ex­cept to con­fess my late, very late, postage stamp gar­den is the worst ex­am­ple of a gar­den I’ve ever seen. It was planted al­most a month later than usual and, I’m not ex­ag­ger­at­ing, the first plant­ing didn’t come up ex­cept for six puny corn plants. Af­ter the se­cond plant­ing, with good re­sults, there is al­most a mess of green beans, the okra plants are strug­gling to form buds and the cukes, lit­tle fellers as they are, are al­most taste­able. And the corn? I’m not ex­pect­ing ears from those first plants, but the se­cond crop looks promis­ing — that is, if it rains and the plants are not too close together. There are a cou­ple of lit­tle green toma­toes and a cou­ple of green bell pep­pers, and that’s about it.

I de­bated a long time about putting a hot wire around the lit­tle patch to foil the deer and fi­nally broke down and got that shocker in place. No, I didn’t touch the wire or stick my tongue to it like to a frozen flag­pole. But I know it’s work­ing … I know it’s work­ing, so now let’s get on those two top­ics I promised in the last ‘cuff … It’s gonna be a real “C” con­glom­er­a­tion col­umn.

Item One: Con­fes­sion — In the re­cent Me­mo­rial Day col­umn, it was noted the first Dec­o­ra­tion Day oc­curred 13 years af­ter the end of the Civil War. It should have read “three years.” Also omit­ted was the fact the graves of Union and Con­fed­er­ate sol­diers were be­ing dec­o­rated long be­fore that first Dec­o­ra­tion Day procla­ma­tion. That’s what I get for re­typ­ing and not reread­ing the ‘cuff which came off the Old Un­der­wood. It does not cor­rect mis­takes.

Item Two: Maybe you’ll re­mem­ber sev­eral months ago I was seek­ing an an­swer to a ques­tion con­cern­ing the num­ber of miles I’d walked dur­ing al­most 40 years of read­ing the temps and pre­cip­i­ta­tion recorded at the NOAA weather sta­tion in the back­yard. I fig­ured I’d made about 14,000 trips, some 75 feet both ways … and I won­dered how much shoe leather was in­volved. Not re­ally; it was just about the num­ber of miles which were in­volved. As an aside, I’ve been do­ing this as a sup­ple­men­tal in­come which, as you can imag­ine, has dou­bled ev­ery year since I be­gan in 1979. Zero times two, com­pounded 40 times equals … wow, that’s a spe­cial bracket to be in.

Friend Bobby Kel­ley did the fa­vor and pre­sented me with the re­sults of his ef­forts which must have in­volved a slide rule, count­ing use of the fin­gers of the al­most 4,000 peo­ple in Gravette and an aba­cus. Huh? What’s that?

Se­ri­ously, I’ve re­cal­cu­lated and can find no no­tice­able er­rors. In fact, I came within one lit­tle fin­ger and both lit­tle toes to the same num­ber. Whew! That took some ef­fort. Thanks, Bob … but ….

I’ve added some other info to the prob­lem: There were nu­mer­ous days mak­ing more than one trip to the lit­tle struc­ture (call it a sta­tion) and, when mea­sur­ing snow­fall in the win­ter, it in­volved much tramp­ing through the drifts. And there have been those calls from Ok­la­homa ask­ing for spe­cial in­for­ma­tion about pos­si­ble rain­fall that might up the level of wa­ter in the Spavinaw which sup­plies some wa­ter for those Tulsa area folks who a cen­tury ago got con­trol of the lit­tle creek that flows in­no­cently through Ben­ton County. I got off track a bit there, but what I mean is how many more miles could have been in­volved in a fi­nal fig­ure since I am con­sid­er­ing ask­ing head­quar­ters for a mileage al­lowance. I’m sure they will re­spond and will prob­a­bly use the cur­rent mileage al­lowance for the en­tire to­tal. You fol­low me? If pushes come to shoves and those big bucks roll in, they could … could … be used to in­stall a storm shel­ter, big enough for the en­tire neigh­bor­hood. There. That’s that for this week.

Ex­cept … It was great to see that Gravette School District is join­ing area schools by adding a shel­ter in up­com­ing con­struc­tion pro­jects with the hope it will never be needed. But it will have other uses.

Next ’cuff, wanna hear the lat­est golf re­port? And a plan for a rain dance if we don’t get a soaker soon? Haven’t a clue. Maybe I should hold my breath.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.