Tuesday, January 4, 2011

View From The Bridge 1/4/2011

“VIEW from the BRIDGE”
By Muncie

There has been much info on the Open House in the River Press Community Calendar and flyers distributed around town. If you pick up your paper and read it immediately, you will still have time to attend on Wednesday late afternoon from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. Take advantage of this opportunity to see the building that represents Fort Benton. Let the City Hall know that you appreciate what they have accomplished by your attendance.

I have missed the last two City Council meetings because of the holidays. I was very happy to read in the River Press about the grant for the extension of the Levee Trail. What a great addition to the beautification of Fort Benton. In my opinion, the Trail is one of the top attractions for nature loving visitors. They often walk the length of the Trail and return to the Visitors Information Center to compliment it.

The picnic area will be awesome for those of you picnic lovers. I expect that some sort of plan will be in the working for the design of the area. If you want your two cents worth in that planning, come to the Council meetings or join a planning committee. If you have questions, I am sure that Mimi or Patty would be happy to answer them. Actually, I know they can answer “all you need to know about City Hall.” I pester them all the time, they are graciously patient, and find the answers quickly. What would Fort Benton do without them?

Now the Longhorns get into it, hot and heavy. The season begins on January 6th, Thursday evening, on our own court with Geraldine. Besides an exciting games that we expect, we are looking forward to a great hamburger. We are somewhat tired of turkey and ham. Why do the burgers always taste better at the concessions then they do at home? (I take my own onions as we like a big slice on the burgers.) I will share if you are there at the same time I am. GO LONGHORNS AND LADY LONGHORNS.

The first story is about Connie Jenkins who was immobile in the snow as she turned off 13th St. into the alley behind the U.S. Bank. (Please do not ask what she was doing there?) Mike Donner spotted the situation and took off to get help. Mary and Tyler May happened on the scene and with help from Kirby from the Bank and Bob Hankins, helped to get her out of the icy ruts. The “Swat Team” from the Clubhouse arrived at the 14th St. entrance to the alley and when they observed that Connie was freed, they quickly dispersed back from whence they came. Her comment was, “I am so happy that I live in Fort Benton…a community where, if you are in trouble, there is help nearby.

The second story is about Dottie Meehan who was working on the Woman’s Club float for Winter Celebration. She had volunteered to go to her home to look for an easel the committee needed. Instead of parking her vehicle on her cleared off driveway, she parked in front of the house because it is a shorter distance to her front door. There had been a Chinook wind that caused slush on top of ice, and when she returned to the car, after not finding the easel, she was stuck.

She called Nancy LaChapelle to tell her that she did not find the easel and just mentioned that she may not be back to help as her vehicle was going nowhere. Nancy showed up immediately and driving by were Jessi Levshakoff and her son Mike. Several others came along to help but it actually took about an hour to finally get the vehicle moving. Does this sound familiar?

My story is about an ice incident. It was on December 15th when The Friends of the Library met at noon for their Christmas Pot-Luck and White Elephant Sale. I went to the Library around 10:00 a.m. with my salad and had some difficulty backing out of the handicapped parking spot. I had to go back and forth several times before I could manage it.

After the party, I had decorations to pack up and left the library about 1:30 p.m. I had an appointment in Great Falls at 3:00 p.m. and so I intended to drop Wally at the house and go right on. I backed half way into the street and could not then go forward or backward.

I jumped out of the truck and headed for the Post Office yelling to Wally that I would get Bo Sparks, (our Marine buddy,) to help. Guess what? Bo had just left for lunch. In the Post Office were several people and a man said that he would come and help, (I do not know who he was and I wish he would identify himself.) When we returned to the vehicle, there were several women who said they would help and sure enough they were able to push me into a position to go forward. However, it would not go forward. I had the gear in 4-wheel but not in the right 4-wheel (whatever that was. I did not know there was more than one position. All right, I admit it.) Since I did not get in touch with the young woman to ask if I could use her name, I can just say that she put it into the correct gear. Away we went with a toot and hollering thank you.

I dropped Wally off and heading onto 13th St. There was a terrible grinding noise and I realized the vehicle was still in that unknown gear. When I stopped at the stop sign, I could not manage to get it out of the unknown gear. I made a right turn and went to 16th St. heading back to the Post Office where I would seek help.

When I reached Franklin St., I saw the man from the Post Office who had helped at the Library, walking along presumably to his home. I stopped and asked for his help because it was now 2:00 p.m. and I had an hour to get to Great Falls. He very quickly got the truck out of the unknown gear, I was on my way, and was not late for the appointment. Oh happy day!

I too, feel as Connie does about living in Fort Benton. You just have to ask. I know that is a difficult thing to do, but perhaps after these stories you will realize that help is just around the corner, down the street or even your next door neighbor. Just ask!

We can now get serious about many projects. For instance, the two that come to mind are the Recycling and the Veterans Photo Programs. I will have more information about them next week and we can move on into this New Year with bright prospects. Please make one of your resolutions to volunteer a few hours a month whatever it may be. Do a kind deed every day without telling anyone. Be happy and enjoy every minute of every day.