Tuesday, January 14, 2014

View From The Bridge 1/15/14

“VIEW from the BRIDGE”
By Muncie

We say farewell to the most kind and gentle man I have ever met.  Gail Stensland did so many projects and supported so many projects, that we will never really know about.

My association with Gail was through the Community Improvement Association and the Shep Monument and Courtyard.  He was a fireball in getting things done and without any fanfare.  Of all the work that was done and has yet to be done on the Shep Courtyard, the memory of Gail will be there.

There was only one time that I worked with Gail and the Shep Courtyard Committee.  We placed a dozen bricks that had been purchased.  The first step is to remove bricks that do not have printing on them and replace with the finished bricks.  It was a fun and enjoyable evening.  I only helped once and I cannot even begin to guess how many times Gail repeated those same steps.

He will be missed by all but especially by the River and Plains work at the Museum.  Bob Doerk left us a year ago and now another icon of Fort Benton.  Goodbye for now Gail.

Well, it is half over and if the sky is clear you will see the full moon on Wednesday the 15th.  That in itself is an uplifting event.  Now that most of the snow and ice is gone, can we call it the January thaw?  Only two more months to go and it will be spring.

Birds visit our feeders every morning in flocks and as a result, we use quantities of bird feed.  A very nice thing happened to me the other day.  I had three 20# bags of bird seed on the front eat of my truck.  I parked in front of the house to take the seed to the feed box because that would be the shortest route.  I had already carried one bag to the box and was just beginning the trek again when I heard a voice, “Say, young lady, let me get that for you.”  (I loved the part about young lady.)  A young man was driving by in his truck and observed what I was doing.  He took the bag from my arms and asked if I had any more.  I said that I had one more bag in the truck and he handled that one with ease too.

Oh, how I remember the days when I could handle those chores by myself.  I certainly appreciated his help.  I do not think that he would want his name printed here but he knows who he is.

I truly believe that I must be showing my age.  For two weeks now I have had my groceries carried to my vehicle and doors opened for me. I heard one young mother tell her young son to open the door for me.   I know that these young people do not realize that someday they will be old.  It is not something I thought about when I was young and agile. Manners are not dead, just sometimes sleeping soundly.

Here is something that I read this past week.  The writer said that they were quoting lyrics from a John Prine tune.  “Ya’ know that old trees just grow stronger; And old rivers grow wilder every day; Old people just grow lonesome; Waiting for someone to say, “Hello in there, hello.”

The squirrel doesn’t visit us any longer. I do know that they are at the other end of town.  I gave up putting our peanuts because the crows were whisking them away.  Guess I will just have to look at the photo that Tim, our editor, took of a pair in our bird bath.  Good shot Tim.

No where in Chouteau County or New York’s Broadway, as a matter of fact, where you will be an audience to the Consortium Showcases a week from Saturday.  I was given a list of the Showcases yesterday and it looks fantastic.  It begins at 8:30 a.m. at the Fort Benton Elementary School and continues all day long.   You will laugh, tap your feet, listen to musical instruments, and hum/sing along.  Come and join many others who love to be entertained.  It will be inspirational, I promise.  You can check out the Showcase Schedule on the Chouteau County Performing Arts site at  http://www.fortbenton.com/arts/conference.htm

I’ll keep this up until the dining room at the Golden Age Senior Center is standing room only.  After all, I am a member of that organization and since they are non-profit, they need all the help they can get.  I am not a very active member.  I do not bake pies but when it comes to eating them, I am the most active.  See you there.

What do you know about Geography?  Q.  What percentage of Montana land does the federal government own?  A.  Below


A. 29.5%