Tuesday, January 17, 2017

View From The Bridge 1/18/17

VIEW from the BRIDGE
By Muncie

I received a t-shirt for Christmas that says on the front, “My Happy Place”, in the middle of Montana outline. How I love that shirt and I feel that it was made just for me. A nice addition would have been Fort Benton but then, nothing is perfect.

I certainly am in my happy place and wouldn’t want to be anywhere else. I have been in every state except one. I never lived in any other state except Michigan but I did visit. I enjoyed some other states like New Mexico and Indiana but would never want to live there. Too hot and too cold and I love the four seasons.

I fell in love with Montana the first time I came here in 1988. I made the move in December of 1993. In May of the following year, I fell in love with the Mail Route and joined my Sweetheart Wally, for the greatest adventures ever.

The thing that I loved best was artifact and rock hunting. We played a game called, “Rock of the Day,” and I usually won for finding the neatest rock.

I did two days of rock hunting in Michigan when I found Petoskey Stones in a lake we were visiting. These stones are fossils and are Michigan’s state rock. I walked down 90 steps to the lake and saw these stones so clearly in the water. I spent the whole day collecting them and I had a bushel basket full. I visited there a second time and collected another basket full. Today I have very few left because I gave them away but still enjoy a huge bottle full of stones in water so I can clearly see the fossils.

I am relating this story because truthfully there isn’t much to write about today. It is Sunday and 10:30 in the morning. When I awoke it was 10 degrees and is now 38 degrees. We actually had a heat wave. My driveway is clear and dry. There are still lots of snow piles and I only went out one day this past week to do some errands.

Do you remember Dottie Meehan? She lived here in Fort Benton for about 10 years on the corner of 18th and Franklin. She moved to Great Falls to live next door to her daughter.

Dottie was a very active member of the Chouteau County Performing Arts Board. Last Friday night the C.C.A.B. gave her a farewell party at her home in Great Falls. There were 10 of us there plus a couple of husbands. A great time was had by all. It was a pot luck party and I really enjoy those. I love all those different kinds of dips and finger foods.

Stories were being told that I had never heard before. It ended up with GHOST STORIES and they should be put into a book.

We miss you Dottie, Dorothy, Debbie, Ashley, Sonia, Lori, Judy and Herb, Don, and all those that I do not know but you readers do.

If you ever hear from anyone who has moved and they want to share their experience, please get their story and let me know.

Dottie loves living next door to her daughter but doesn’t like living in Great Falls.  It is not like Fort Benton where you can almost walk anywhere. Great Falls is too confining. In most places you are too far from any services to walk to them like the grocery, drug store, post office, and library. Let us count our blessings.

She came to visit Fort Benton for a week and her sister-in-law Lorna had River Press personnel over for coffee and to visit with Lindsay.  It was wonderful to see her and listen to her stories about the move and how she has adapted.

At Lorna’s home I sat at the dining room table looking out a large window to the back yard. I have told you that I do not have any birds at my four feeders since I moved. I watched dozens of birds going on and off Lorna’s bird feeder. I am so jealous and want those birds to come and dine at my feeders.

When I heard that Lindsay was leaving I called Bethany to ask her if she was planning on moving. She assured me that she wasn’t because her husband is a farmer.

Now, every time I see Bethany, I ask her if she is planning on moving. It has gotten to be a regular question between us and we get a big laugh out of it. I just wanted that promise down on paper so she can’t back out.

I had also told her that I had expected her and Lindsay to build up out elementary school figures. (Now you get a good laugh out of this and it is my joke of the week.)

Congratulations to the Recycling Committee for the Montana State award for being the best city in Montana for recycling. Karen and Committee, you well deserved it.

I make almost every 1st Saturday morning and am amazed at the efficient way the whole thing is set up. The Freshman Class is to be royally commended for their volunteer community service. What a proud moment for Fort Benton.

Another nice thing was that our own newly elected Representative Jim O’Hara presented the award. A good time was had by all and our editor, Tim Burmeister, was able to tag along to get the story and the picture which appeared on the front of last weeks River Press.

Actually there is a big event coming up on Friday January 27th, Saturday the 28th and Sunday the 29th. It is being held in Great Falls this year. (Remember that Fort Benton held it last year and it is an every other year event.)

If you would like to attend the entire 3 days, call Connie Jenkins at 750-2918 for a reservation. There is a charge for this that includes your fantastic Chandee meals and other like meeting the artists. A member of the C.C.P.A. board has a vote which you would not have. However, I think that many of you will just want to enjoy an entire day of music on Saturday. This day is free to the public and you have to find your own lunch.

Impact/Consortium brings Performing Arts programs from cities and towns all across Montana. The purpose is for the artists to showcase their act. The Performing Arts groups then choose the acts that will perform in their town or city the following season.  

It is a great break in the winter routine so put it on your calendar and I’ll see you there.

“A wise person knows everything, a shrewd one know everyone.”  Anonymous

I saw a great commercial this past weekend that talked about patriotism. It said that you show your love of your country by being patriotic. How do you do that? I have written about the subject of putting up an American flag and to support the Troops by putting a green bulb in your porch light. Are you patriotic? I will see how many American flags are installed between now and Memorial Day. Come on folks!  What is the problem? The cost is about what you would spend on going out to dinner, a six pack of beer, or a bottle of wine. Just do it!